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Flower Meanings: How to Say, “I Love You” with Flowers for Valentine’s Day

written by Laurel Nakai February 9, 2018


While roses are the queen flora of Valentine’s Day, (more than 220 Million roses are produced for Valentine’s Day every year!) there are hundreds of options when it comes to the perfect bouquet.

Flowers have been used to convey emotion and meaning for centuries. Over time the practice became known as Floriology and was especially popular in Victorian Era England. Through myths, legends, religious and cultural traditions, flowers have become powerful symbols for expressing emotion.

Whether you’re looking for something traditional or modern, you won’t miss with these flower choices for Valentine’s Day. Find your own unique way to say “I Love You” in the language of flowers!  

Romantic Love

Red and Pink Roses– The definitive flower of Valentine’s Day, roses are classic, elegant, and romantic. Red roses are associated with true love, while pink signifies joy and passion.

Tulips– Red tulips are a lovely alternative to roses, and with the meaning “undying love” they are a perfect centerpiece for your Valentine. The meaning is tied to the Turkish and Persian legend of Farhad and Shirin, a Romeo and Juliet type love story.  

Violet- Add some blue or purple violet to your bouquet for a pop of color and to signify faithfulness.

Forget me not– It’s all in the name! These whimsical flowers are a fun and playful way to say “I love you.”



Iris– For your true-blue friend, try this flower associated with wisdom and trust. In Greek mythology, the goddess Iris carried messages to Zeus and Hera. The Iris is also the inspiration for the fleur-de-lis, a decorative symbol originally used by French royalty.

Delphinium–  Do these words describe your friendship: “Levity, fun, big-hearted, ardent attachment, and joy?” Then Delphinium is the perfect fit!

Peach blossom– Wish your friends a “long-life” and show your “generosity” with the dainty peach blossom.

Gladiolus– In ancient Rome, Gladioli were associated with gladiators. A gladiolus represents strength and integrity and is the perfect match for the friend who never lets you down.  



Peony– In China, Peonies signify prosperity and honor, while in Japan they are a symbol of masculinity and bravery. Men love flowers, too!

Chrysanthemum– Choose a yellow chrysanthemum for your “precious one” or pick the perfect color for your loved one’s personality. In Australia, Chrysanthemums are the official flower of Mother’s Day because of their nickname— mums.

Lilac– Lilacs are symbolic of youth and innocence. In Celtic traditions, they were seen as magical due to their intoxicating aroma, and in Russia, holding a sprig of lilac over a newborn was said to bring wisdom. These flowers add a little extra sweetness to any arrangement.

Quirky and Flirty

Aster – Aster’s are known as a “talisman” or symbol of love and are associated with Venus, the Roman Goddess of Love. These flowers pair beautifully with others or shine brightly on their own.

Blue Roses– For that one-of-a-kind Valentine, the blue rose means “mystery, attaining the impossible, and love at first sight.”

Gardenia– Depending on the culture, these flowers can signify “secret love, joy, sweet love, and good luck.” These flowers are elegant and romantic and look great as a centerpiece.

Orchid– These exotic looking flowers have a long history of being associated with fertility, love and elegance. Because the flowers were so rare in Victorian England, a gift of Orchids was seen as a symbol of deep affection— the rarer the species, the more passionate the love!

Every Valentine deserves something as unique and beautiful as they are. Be sure to check out our DIY pages for more inspiration and flower combos!