The Secret Language of Flowers


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Ever wondered why we surprise someone with a bunch of bright yellow flowers to cheer them up or declare our love with a dozen red roses?

It all stems from an age old art form, one that I have been fascinated with for a number of years now. It’s called Floriography, or the language of flowers.

Floriography became truely popular during the Victorian Era. It was during this time that flowers were used to convey a message, with each flower having a special symbolism that needed deciphering by the person on the receiving end. A rose was not simply a rose, it carried a message, and even the colour of the flower could affect the meaning it conveyed.

The meanings and traditions associated with flowers have changed over time, with different cultures developing varying ideas for the same flowers, but the fascination persists just the same.

These days flowers tend to be chosen for the appearance of the bloom and the colours available. But sometimes it can be fun to design your wedding bouquet with a specific meaning in mind!

Let us uncover the stories these blooms hold and open you up to a whole new language – the language of flowers.

Acacia - love and beauty

Amaryllis - pride

Anemone - forsaken

Anthurium - hospitality

Apple blossom - preference

Aster - delicate and dainty

Bird of paradise - joyfulness 

Bluebell - Humility

Carnation, Fascination, divine love

       - Red carnation, My Heart Aches, admiration

       - White carnation, Innocence, pure love, women’s good luck gift

       - Pink carnation, I’ll never forget you

       - Yellow carnation, Disappointment, rejection

Calla Lilly – Beauty

Camellia – Perfect Loveliness

Chrysanthemum - Cheerfulness, wealth

Cornflower - impassioned feelings 

Daffodil - Regard

Daisy - Innocence, hope

Delphinium – Swift

Forget-me-not - True love memories

Freesia – Innocence

Gardenia - Secret love

Gladioli - sincerity, exasperation. 

Hibiscus – True Beauty

Holly - Hope

Hyacinth - Games and sport, playfulness, rashness

     - Hyacinth blue, Constancy of love

     - Hyacinth purple, Sorrow, forgiveness, regret

     - Hyacinth yellow, Jealousy

     - Hyacinth white, Loveliness, prayers for someone

Hydrangea – Understanding

Iris - A message, faith & wisdom

Ivy - Friendship, continuity

Jasmine white - Sweet love

Lavender - Devotion, virtue, luck

Lilac - Joy of youth

Lily - Majesty, truth, honor

Lily-of-the-valley - Sweetness

Lisianthus - outgoing nature

Lotus Flower - Purity, enlightenment, self-regeneration, and rebirth

Magnolia - Love of nature

Marigold - flower of the dead, grief, cruelty and jealousy

Nasturtium - Patriotism

Oak - Strength

Orchid – Rare Beauty

Pansy - Thoughts

Peony - Happy life, happy marriage

Poppy - Eternal Sleep, Oblivion, Imagination

Rose - love 

  • Dark red rose: unconscious beauty
  • White rose: purity, innocence, reverence, silence
  • Pink rose: grace, happiness, gentleness
  • Yellow rose: joy, friendship, the promise of a new beginning
  • Orange rose: desire and enthusiasm
  • Lavender rose: love at first sight
  • Coral rose: friendship, modesty, sympathy

Rosemary - Remembrance

Snapdragon - deception

Stock - bonds of affection

Sunflower - Adoration

Sweet pea - Pleasures

Sweet William - Gallantry

Tulip, Perfect Lover, Fame

     - Tulip red, Declaration of love

     - Tulip yellow, Sunshine in your smile

Violet - Loyalty, devotion, faithfulness, modesty

Wallflower - Faithfulness in adversity

Willow - Sadness

Zinnia - Thoughts of absent friends

Please tell us which flowers have meaning to you! If we are missing one of your favorites, please let us know which one and its meaning.

Debbie & Dave

When my amazing bookkeepers Mum decided to come to Canberra for her wedding she reached out to me to see if I could work my creative magic and create some gorgeous florals and setup some floral decor at the venue.

Now Debbie is one cool cat! We sat down to talk and we ended up spending hours chatting away. Debbie told me about how she met Dave, about how she found love again and the lengths as well as physical miles they travelled to be together and it's truely the sweetest love story. 

Debbie gave me a few requirements, she wanted a small bouquet in deep reds and white to tie in with her champagne dress and her bridesmaids dress that was a deep burgundy red and the rest she left up to me. The end result, a combination of lisianthus, tulips and freesias and local red roses the ones with that divine old fashioned rose smell.


Venue: Frankies at Forde | Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist 

Bronwyn & Lyle

Bronwyn & Lyle were married in April this year at Mt Stomlo Observatory. This wedding was super fun to create with lots of bright colours to work with.

Bronwyn & Lyle chose a bright, fun colour scheme, which really suited their fun personalities. In the bouquets I used combination of peonies, roses, billy buttons, stock, sweet william and tulips in hot pinks, yellows, oranges and deep purples.


Venue: Mount Stromlo & QT Canberra | Photography: Kelly McInnes Photography | Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist | Dress: Luv Bridal | Hair: Wildflower Hair | Makeup: Tara Florence Artistry |  Suits: Ferrari Formalwear

A very special wedding

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We got the opportunity early this week to join an amazing group of wedding suppliers to make Kathie’s dream come true to marry her love Adam with her beautiful daughter Annabelle as flower girl. Many of you may have heard of 3 year old Annabelle Potts who was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor late last year. We are grateful to have been a part of such a special day for this lovely family.

Candy Buffet, Styling & Printables By: Platinum Invitations & Candy Buffets | Flowers By: Orchid & Vine | Chalkboard By: Allira's Inklings

Meghann & Dave

Meghann & Dave were married in early autumn this year at Meghann’s parents farm just outside of Canberra. Meghann had been living over in Canada for the past few years with her Canadian Fiancé but chose to come back to Australia to have her wedding. I knew Meghann growing up, we went to the same school a few years apart and her parents live just down the road from the house my partner grew up in. I was excited when I found out she was getting married and thrilled when she asked me to do her flowers.

Meghann and Dave chose a pastel pink and white colour scheme, which looked divine. In the bouquets I used David Austins, Garden Roses and lisianthus in a gorgeous colour palette of soft pinks and ivory with flowing soft grey eucalyptus foliage. Words cannot even begin to describe the sweet fragrance from these bouquets. It was heaven creating them.

As I drove up on the morning of the wedding to deliver the flowers I had to catch my breath, the view was picturesque. The driveway was cobbled with trees lining each side, there was a rosiness to the leaves that hinted to the beginning of autumn in the air. When I arrived her mum greeted me, we chatted for a while and you could tell she was elated that her daughter was here in Australia, getting married in the gorgeous place she grew up. After dropping off the flowers her mum gave me a sneak peek at the location the ceremony would be held and the beautiful rolling hills that would featured in the background of their ceremony.

There are many beautiful places to have your wedding in Canberra but there was something so special about seeing Meghann get married here in her old home.

Tiahn & Andy

Tiahn & Andy were married in early autumn this year. When they first came to me Tiahn & Andy had no idea what they wanted when it came to flowers. So when they came to their consult with me I spent time with them really getting a feel for their style and personalities and understanding what they wanted their big day to be like.

I guided them on choosing flowers in a colour scheme that worked in with their theme and would look lovely against the navy blue dresses picked out for the bridesmaids. In the end we came up with a classic styled bouquet for Tiahn and her bridesmaids with white sim carnations, peach carnations, white snap dragons, white freesias and white lisianthus with ivory satin ribbon and pearl headed pins to finish.

"the bouquets turned out so much better than anything I could find on Pinterest!" - Tiahn


The funniest part was on the day a very nervous groom put on the lapel corsage meant for his mother and she had his buttonhole! It turned out to be one of the funniest stories of the day. After Tiahn told me this story I now make sure to label all the items, I’m so used to making corsages and buttonholes I forget not everyone has seen one or had a chance to wear one before! 



Photography: Fairweather Photography | Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist

Janaya & Scott

Our first wedding of the year, and what a way to start. The day was absolutely perfect, and the love between Janaya and Scott was palpable!

When I arrived to drop off the flowers, I found Janaya dressed to the nines in her stunning gown with sneakers on! She’d just been out getting pre wedding shots done out in the paddocks at Poacher’s Pantry. The flowers for Janaya's bouquet were a gorgeous mix of roses and dahlias with soft grey dusty miller foliage. For the tables we used Dahlias in Mason Jars to tie in with her bouquet and the rustic theme of the wedding.


Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist | Photography: Henry Paul | Venue: Poacher's Pantry | Dress: Affordable Bridal, Gundaroo NSW | Hair: Steven Lloyd | Makeup: Zoe Barton |  Shoes: Shoes of Prey | Suits: Roger Bartholomew | Entertainment: Jake Edgley | Catering: Poacher's Pantry | Celebrant: Amanda Corbett.

Nick & Jola

It was an absolute treat to do Jola and Nick's Wedding. I have known Jola since we were 5 years old, we went to school together through Primary School and High School, so it was really special to be able to make the flowers for her big day.

Jola loves yellow (good choice! it's my favourite too) so we made sure her bouquets shone like the sun with a gorgeous selection of roses, sunflowers, and orchids, with lots of lush foliage a few succulents added in for some added texture. Jola had a gorgeous trail to her bouquet which really set her apart from her bridesmaids which held classic posies in matching her theme. All the bouquets were wrapped with Navy ribbon to compliment the girls dresses and the bridal bouquet had trails of ribbon that accented the trail of the flowers.

The ceremony was held at the beautiful Gold Creek Chapel followed by a reception at the Lobby where we used crosscut wood logs with a scattering of yellow flowers in little vases to sit upon each of the tables. 


Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist | Photographer: A Shot Above the Rest | Ceremony venue: The Chapel Gold Creek | Reception venue: The Lobby | Reception set-up and styling: Orchid and Vine Florist

Matt & Steph

It was lovely creating the flowers for Matt & Steph's beautiful Spring wedding. Matt and Steph choose the National Gallery of Australia as the venue for their big day and it couldn't have been more perfect. They had a stunning outdoor ceremony out in the Sculpture Gardens surrounding the Gallery followed by an intimate reception at Gandel Hall. The choice of flowers really complimented Steph's beautiful dress and we were able to incorporate the same flowers into the bridal arbour that was featured at their ceremony. 


Flowers: Orchid and Vine Florist | Photographer: Keepsakephoto by the Keeffes | Ceremony venue: Sculpture Gardens, National Gallery of Australia | Reception venue: Gandel Hall, National Gallery of Australia | Celebrant: Gina Callan, Licensed to Wed | Dress: Nouveau Riche | Bridesmaids’ dresses: Zimmermann | Groom and groomsmen’s suits: InStitchU | Bride’s hair: Sapphire Hair and Makeup | Bride’s shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Makeup: Sapphire Hair and Makeup | Ceremony set-up and styling: | Cake: Cheryl’s Signature Cakes | Band: Baker Boys | First dance song: Feels Like Home – Chantal Kreviazuk