If you're planning a wedding with lots of personal touches, think about personalizing your flowers, too. But instead of basing your choices on color and style alone, let each flower's significance and meaning inform your decision, as well.
The "language" of flowers has been around for centuries. During Victorian times, flowers were used to express emotions when words and gestures failed. Today, many couples follow this romantic practice and create bouquets and centerpieces with flowers whose meanings have some significance to them. While flowers with a love connection, like roses and carnations, are popular, there are many other meaningful traits like new beginnings (daffodil), faith (iris), and perseverance (hydrangea) to consider.
While most flowers have good vibes and positive sentiments, you'll want to steer clear of those whose meanings have a negative association—begonia symbolizes "beware" and tansy, "hostile thoughts."
Color plays a substantial role in a flower's meaning. Everyone's favorite wedding flower, the rose, has different meanings depending on the hue. While a red rose symbolizes passion, a white rose means purity, and a pink one signifies joy and admiration. The same goes for hyacinths: The white variety means loveliness, the blue kind represents constancy.
Ahead, discover the meaning behind 41 popular flowers used in weddings.
Don't call amaryllis a wallflower! With its bold colors and lily-like style, it has rightfully made a name for itself in the botanical world as a "splendid beauty."
You don't need a breeze to be charmed by the allure of this delicate bloom, which comes from the Greek word for "windflower," and symbolizes anticipation.
If you're going with a heart theme for your wedding, this tropical beauty, which stands for hospitality, has a Cupid-inspired shape that will fit right in.
Like an extra in a movie who stays in the background, this popular bouquet and centerpiece filler—which signifies festivity—is often there to support the star flowers. With tiny white clouds for petals, it deserves top billing of its own.
When people think "wedding flower," this bloom often comes to mind. With its trumpet shape and elegant air, the calla lily more than stands up to its meaning: regal.
Far beyond being just a lapel decoration, carnations can be massed together for a lush look that's affordable. The pink variety means gratitude, and white is pure love, but stay away from striped, which represents refusal.
Brides who want to incorporate these delicate pink buds, which symbolize the fragility of life, into their décor better act fast: They're only around for a few short weeks in the spring.
Looking like a cross between a pompom and a daisy, mums are a full-bodied favorite of weddings for their variety of colors, shapes, and sizes which aptly symbolize joy.
A climbing plant of the buttercup family with large showy petals, clematis could be considered a brainy flower—after all, it symbolizes ingenuity and mental beauty.
What do marriage and this shapely spring flower have in common? Both represent new beginnings, which is tailor-made for a couple's big day.
A kissin' cousin of the daisy family, dahlias originated in Scandinavia and mean from the valley, perfect for a wedding with a garden theme.
If ever there was a flower that made the world smile, it's this pretty little thing, whose meaning is innocence. The daisy's free spirit vibe goes well with casual weddings.
If you've been planning your big day for months (years even), why not give a nod to your excitement by including this bell-shaped bloom, whose meaning is anticipation, in your arrangements?
A sweetly fragrant spring favorite with up to 10 tiny, bell-shaped flowers on each stem, this beauty originated in Africa and represents innocence and friendship.
This tropical treasure, known for its fragrance and waxy petals, symbolizes joy. It's earned a reputation as a popular flower for a bride to wear in her hair.
A wildly popular member of the daisy family, the Gerbera differs from the traditional variety with rows of overlapping petals. With a name that means cheerfulness, its no surprise that it has the same sunny disposition.
If you're athletic and looking for a flower that symbolizes your love of games, look to the highly fragrant hyacinth, which was named after a Greek boy and represents sport or play.
If you love full-bodied flowers, this round bloom with an abundance of tightly packed petals is the one for you. Bonus: it's marriage ready symbolizing both perseverance and heartfelt emotion.
The inspiration for the fleur-de-lis, France's national emblem, the iris represents three important entities: faith, valor, and wisdom. It's best known for its deep purple shading.
Also known as camellia, this classic Southern charmer, which grows as a flowering shrub, has lush petals similar to the peony and glossy leaves. Newlyweds choose it because it exemplifies graciousness.
Let's hear it for a flower that has a dual personality: It symbolizes both beautiful spirit and fickleness. Part of the buttercup family, larkspur is a complex flower like the orchid, with an irregular shape.
Don't just pick this flower for its gorgeous color and scent—give it a place in your arrangements for what it symbolizes: devotion and virtue.
Is your SO the very first person you fell for? Awww. Consider walking down the aisle carrying a bouquet of this purple bloom whose meaning is first love.
The symbol of modesty and virginity, the white variety of this timeless flower is a wedding staple. The other shades have significant meaning also: The orange lily symbolizes passion, while yellow represents gaiety.
Lily of the Valley
Just one look at the tiny petals of this dainty bloom and its symbolism makes perfect sense: sweetness and purity of heart. The flower is also thought to represent a return to happiness.
Generally associated with the south, this large showy flower with a distinctive fragrance is prized worldwide and has been around for 20 million years! Fittingly, it symbolizes nobility and dignity.
Also known as grape hyacinth, this flower develops small, urn-shaped blossoms that are usually purple (symbolizing mystery, calm, and creativity) but also comes in dark blue (for power and confidence).
Carrying a bouquet of this exotic beauty on your wedding day is not only a sign that you love a dramatic touch but that you are a person of refinement and charm, everything that this stunning bloom symbolizes.
Romantic couples may love peonies for their lush fluffy petals, but they'll cherish the meaning even more: The bloom symbolizes a happy marriage.
For your wedding, choose the right color of this eternally cheerful bloom: A red poppy is linked to pleasure, yellow stands for wealth and success. But steer clear of white, which signifies consolation.
Dating back 300 million years, this flower comes in many sizes and colors that symbolize courage and diversity. It was named after the Greek god Poseidon's son, Proteus, who could change his shape at will.
Queen Anne's Lace
Symbolizing delicate femininity and complexity, this wedding favorite of frilly white blossoms comes with a naming legend: Queen Anne was challenged to create a lace as delicate as a flower.
Well known for its diversity of brilliant colors, this rounded bloom is similar in appearance to camellias, with multiple layers of crepe-paper-thin petals. It's no wonder the flower symbolizes radiant charm and attractiveness.
If you want your bridal bouquet to tell the world how you feel about your better half, nothing says it better than red roses, which symbolize passionate love. Pink (admiration) and white (purity) say a lot, too.
Though this bloom stands for two vastly different ideas: One, gracious lady, seems more fitting for such a lovely flower than its other meaning, deception. The latter may have come about because if you squeeze it a certain way, the flower looks like a dragon's mouth.
Lots of family and friends will wish you and your partner well on your wedding day. Get a head start by filling your celebration with this flower that's a symbol of good luck.
Big and lush, sunflowers—symbolizing dedicated love—are beloved for their striking appearance and look-at-me allure, which are often used at rustic, country-themed nuptials.
If you want your wedding to be remembered as one of blissful pleasure, incorporate some of this delicate flower into your centerpieces.
If it's spring, it's tulip time. This darling beauty comes in many colors, each with a different meaning. Among them: Red means declaration of love, yellow is sunshine, and the variegated kind symbolizes beautiful eyes.
Anyone wishing for something blue in their bouquet should check out this pretty bloom known for its blue star-shaped flowers and greenish-gray felted leaves symbolizing peace and harmony.
Gardeners are wild about this flower because it attracts butterflies, and couples love it for the gorgeous variety of colors like magenta (symbolizing lasting affection) and scarlet (symbolizing constancy).