“How cunningly nature hides every wrinkle of her inconceivable antiquity under roses and violets and morning dew!” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Floriography, or the art of speaking with flowers has been used for centuries. But one flower in particular has become iconic in its use for conveying strong emotions.  Love, Friendship, Triumph, Hope, Sorrow, Regret even Sympathy…only The Rose has managed to convey them all.

“The single rose is held as a symbol of completion, of consummate achievement and perfection  Be it red, white or yellow, roses convey so much alone or in a bunch, or matched with other, complementary flowers. This brief foray into floriography will allow you to understand their true meanings.


White Roses
Purity, Secrecy, Innocence, Reverence, Worthiness
One of the oldest varieties of rose, Rosa Alba or the white rose symbolizes purity and innocence.  White roses are often used in bridal ceremonies because of the wholesomeness and virtue these flowers bring to mind.

Red Roses
Love, Respect, Courage, Passion, Well Done, Congratulations
Red roses are immediately associated with passion and love.  A single red rose signifies “I love you”. Red roses can also convey thoughts of courage and congratulations.

Pink Roses

Happiness, Romance, Admiration, Sweetness, Thank You
Ranging from a subtle hint of color to deep and bright, pink roses have come to mean joy, happiness, gratitude and admiration.  The light to medium pink roses can show sympathy or admiration.  Deeper pinks denote gratitude.

Yellow Roses
Friendship, Caring, Thanks, Welcome or Welcome Back, Joy

In German culture these beauties are a symbol of infidelity and dying love, but more traditionally they’re a symbol of friendship and happiness.

Roses in Shades of Orange

Desire, Enthusiasm, Pride, Happiness

Orange, coral and peach are closely related colors, with orange being the more vivid and coral and peach being subtler, these flame like roses are used to denote desire and fascination. Just as the red rose means passion and the yellow rose means friendship, orange roses often mean a cross-over between these two emotions.

Peach Roses

Appreciation, Sincerity, Gratitude, Modesty

Peach roses are often sent as gesture of appreciation or gratitude rather than as a token of love.  Their gentle yet pleasing color can also be an expression of sympathy.

Lavender Roses

Probably the most mystical color of rose is lavender.  It is said if someone gives you a purple rose it means they fell in love with you at first sight. Purple is also a royal color, a single purple rose means you find the person majestic, opulent and special.

Roses which are and are not….

Blue Roses

There is actually no such thing as a blue rose.  The blue roses that exist are  variations of purple or lavender which only appear to be blue.  In keeping the meaning of the blue rose is held to be a figment of the imagination, or something non existent and unobtainable.

Black Roses

Like the blue rose. true black roses don’t exist in nature. Black roses are actually roses of such the deepest red or purple, that they appear to be black. Giving someone black roses commonly means something negative such as the death of a relationship or wishing ill will. Some, however believe  that black roses symbolizes mysticism, rebirth or the beginning of something new.

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