choose wisely

Choose Wisely

by Anne Middleton, on November 3rd, 2015

A special relative of mine is becoming an octogenarian this month.  And although she remains very young at heart, determining the appropriate offering to commemorate the occasion was puzzling and elusive. What the heck do you get an individual who has experienced eight decades of living? 

After much angst, I decided on fresh flowers….the perfect present that, when delivered, deposits a smile on every woman’s face (unless it is from an unwelcomed lover).

My aunt loves roses, but when I proceeded to order these delicate blooms, I was confronted and I faced a conundrum.  It turns out every shade of a rose has a unique and novel meaning.

Roses have inspired people over the ages to develop language all their own by ascribing meanings to color, variety and the number of roses being gifted. Silly me.  My knowledge of these precious petals was very traditional.

The well-trained florist consulted with me to impart their wisdom and to assure I was cognizant of the symbolic meanings associated with roses.  This connoisseur in flora chastised me that serious thought and deliberation was required prior to selecting the color or variety of these thorny blossoms. 

Luckily, Flower Expert compiles a concise list of rose flower meanings below.

• Red Roses: A red rose is an unmistakable expression of love. Red roses convey deep emotions and can be used to convey heartfelt regret and sorrow (as many husbands have discovered after wronging their spouse).

• White Roses: White, the shade of purity, chastity and innocence are generally associated with new beginnings and make an ideal accompaniment to a first-time bride walking down the aisle. Additionally, white flowers can be used to express sympathy or spirituality.

• Yellow Roses: Yellow roses are an expression of exuberance since they easily evoke sunny feelings of joy, warmth and welcome. They are symbols of friendship and caring and indicate purely platonic emotions.

• Pink Roses: Over all, pink roses are used to convey gentle emotions such as admiration, joy and gratitude.

• Orange Roses: The unusual orange rose is reminiscent of a fiery blaze and signifies passion or energy.  They are chosen to express intense desire, pride and fervor.

• Lavender Roses: The gentle beauty of this rose corresponds to "love at first sight". Darker shades of lavender roses (close to purple) convey a sense of regal majesty and splendor.

• Blue Roses: A perfectly blue rose is still elusive and cannot be achieved naturally.  Blue roses therefore embody the desire for the unattainable. They say "I can't have you but I can't stop thinking about you.”  Ooooo.

• Green roses: Green is the color of harmony, of opulence, of fertility. It is also a color indicative of peace and tranquility. But we wonder….shouldn’t green mean wealth as it is the color of money?

• Black Roses: Black represents death and farewell. But these morose roses are actually not black at all.  Rather, they really dark red roses. Sending black roses to someone indicates the death of the relationship.

I now comprehend that there is a considerable depth to the gesture of gifting roses. Nevertheless, if you are reading this right now and chuckling at my inexperience and ignorance on the hues of blossoms, then you  are certainly ripe for one of the over 120 Florist positions posted on provides an emmense range of careers all over the world. Regardless if you are a searching for employment among living botanicals or wish to enjoy life as a brain surgeon, can help get you started.