Why In Carnation Do We Even Send Flowers?

reasons for sending flowers

We’re glad you asked! In 2016, well-seasoned local florists (Hello!) are only a few mouse-clicks away, making the gesture of flower-sending easier than ever. Being the recipient of a beautifully arranged spray of flowers is an instant day-maker. They elicit feelings of warmth and inclusion. We engage with their aesthetic, their fragrances, and the sentiments of the sender.

But have you ever been curious as to where it all started?

Sending flowers to express a particular sentiment or thought is by no means a modern concept. Meaning has been attached to flowers for centuries. From Europe, to Asia, to the Middle East, History is littered with its tales. In Victorian Society in the 1800’s, it was commonplace for overt verbal expression of emotions to be prohibited. So how did they get around it? They sent flowers! Carefully selecting different flowers for an arrangement acted as a ‘coded message’ for recipients to decipher.

Those clever 19th century rascals!

As time went on, ‘the language of flowers’ (formally known as Floriography) evolved. Countless floral dictionaries were written and continue to be re-printed to this day. Fast forward a couple of centuries, the sending and receiving of flowers continues to maintain its historical roots as a language.

Popular reasons for sending flowers

We send arrangements with different intentions and messages (albeit a tad less mischievous than in the 19th Century), for example:

To express gratitude

Gift giving as a way to say ‘thank you’ to people in our personal and professional lives has a big impact. Neuropsychologist Rick Hanson (author of the bestselling Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love, and Wisdom) has said that “when you say “thank you” to someone, it’s a small moment with big ripples: a confirmation of a deep and wonderful truth, that we all depend on each other”. Gratitude in action is significant and underestimated.

To express our well wishes

Hey! Congratulations! – From engagements, to new bundles of joy, to graduations – sending flowers is always a favoured way to help celebrate milestones and achievements with the people in our lives.

To express empathy

A well thought out flower arrangement can let loved ones know they are in our thoughts and have our sympathies, especially during tough times when words evade us.

To show love

Well this one was obvious! Especially for women. The origins of the meaning of the rose go as far back as Rome. According to legend, The God Zephyrus loved flowers with such zeal that he changed himself into a rose because the Goddess Flora was interested in nothing else. When Flora saw the rose, she kissed it, fulfilling  Zephyrus’ wish. Talk about romantic!

Of course, significant moments and occasions aren’t the only reason we send flowers. Sometimes we just want to let someone know we are thinking of them and the gesture of a bouquet can say it all. In the hustle and bustle of modern day life, small, simple acts of kindness can create lasting impressions and positive change.


Flower arrangements are an excellent agent to express sentiment and emotion to the people in our lives. The language expressed by flowers holds fascinating historical roots. It is rich, versatile and incredibly pertinent to our lives today. The team here at Sydney Flowers are here to help. We are honoured to be apart of the process, and oh-so-passionate about what we do!

Our same day delivery and expertise in the industry make sending flowers simple. Remember us for your next occasion!