In today’s fast paced, text savvy world we are perhaps less comfortable with nuances of communication then the Victorians were. However back in the day it was quite common to convey a message by means of the humble rose whose various colors could communicate a sentiment to the recipient that they would be able to readily discern. The romantic simplicity of such jesters is typically Victorian and has in some part lingered into our modern day with the ever-popular tradition of giving flowers for Valentine’s Day.

What then can we learn from this act of sending one or more roses? Most importantly the choice of color is key if you are aiming to send an unwritten message with your bouquet! Once you know the significance of the various hues you can become an expert in the subtlety of floral communication and have much more fun than texting.

Red Roses

The best-known meaning must be associated with the red rose which is universally regarded as a symbol of love and therefore the most popular choice for Valentine’s Day, special   romantic dates and the like. Interestingly the number of roses would also communicate a further message ranging from a single rose declaring love to a dozen representing a request for the recipient to be the sender’s loved one.

White Roses

Not surprisingly, at the other end of the spectrum, the white rose represents purity and someone yet to receive love or perhaps young love. Sent to someone it could indicate that because of their purity they are worthy to receive the recipient’s love. These flowers are often given to children or young ones, or those who are newly in love.

Other Colors

If your intentions are not so pure then maybe the choice of color would be the orange rose whose fierier tones would symbolize underlying passion and attraction. If, however the attraction is instant the choice of color must be in the purple or lilac wheel house whose more unusual and ethereal hues indicate this somewhat unexpected and inexplicable surge of emotions.

Equally strong in its inference yellow was associated with jealousy in the Victorian era but today signifies friendship, caring and even joy, so it pays to make sure you keep up to date with the latest developments in the floral language if you don’t want to be misunderstood! A full bouquet of yellow roses now reflects the association with sunshine and will convey happiness and friendship to the recipient if they are familiar with the modern take on this color. The iconic pink rose, as its color so aptly exudes, represents grace or if the blooms are more peach in color, modesty.

As the color intensifies in the flowers so too the level of emotions conveyed, so if you pick a rose with a salmon hue you are stepping away from the modesty of pink but not quite in the realms of the fiery orange! Similarly, the choice of a burgundy colored rose versus a pure red could signify something subtler then the obvious message of the more familiar color, perhaps a more restrained less revealed beauty or love. The romantic and whimsical nature of giving flowers with meaning and thought harkens to a bygone age but it might be time to revive the practice and encourage communication with a more colorful language!