Flowers have forever been used as a symbol of love, admiration, and affection throughout history. A single beautiful flower or a bunch of them forever remain a means of communicating where you are able to convey your emotions without even saying a single word. Beautiful, fragrant flowers that come in a myriad of shapes, colors, sizes, and fragrances offer a wide variety of options for people to choose from.
Although each flower has its own history and symbolization, roses continue to be a popular choice when it comes to sending well wishes to friends, family, and loved ones.
Roses are often thought of as being the flower of love. If you want to give flowers to a loved one, a red rose immediately comes to mind. However, this is not fair to the roses! After all, roses come in a variety of colors and types, each having its own significance and symbolization. In fact, you can choose a particular type of rose for practically every occasion.
So let’s dive into some of the details of the types of roses and what their colors symbolize before identifying them for a particular occasion.
Types of Roses
When we think about roses, a picture of a red rose immediately comes to mind. But roses are much more than just a simple red rose. There are a wide variety of roses with a close approximation being more than 150 types and thousands of hybrids.
Depending on their size, shape, color, and life, roses can broadly be categorized into three groups, each group having its further subdivisions.
Old garden roses are the conventional, naturally flowering roses that were grown before the newer species of roses were bred in 1867. These roses are beautiful with a strong fragrance and have lots of petals. They only flower once a year in the summers. They can be found in the form of small shrubs to tall plants up to 20 feet in height. Old garden roses can further be divided into two subclasses: Antique roses and Old roses.
Old roses are the ones that were found in Europe before the 1700s whereas Antique roses are the ones that came to Europe in the late 1700s and trace their origins to the Chinese rose.
Modern garden roses are the ones that were bred after 1867. The first hybrid tea rose known as “La France” was grown in a garden in 1867, which completely changed the way people knew roses. Not only did these hybrid roses come in a variety of colors and shapes, they could bloom multiple times in a year. They do not have as many petals as old garden roses, but the flower size is bigger.
Although modern garden roses have a longer shelf life, they do not have any of the conventional rose’s fragrance and aroma.
Wild roses are the species of roses that occur naturally and are mostly native to North America and Europe. The true wild roses have exactly 5 petals and are mostly found in pink color and rarely in red. These roses are quite delicate with a wonderful aroma.
Most of the roses that we see today are hybrids that fall under the modern roses category. Some of these most popular rose types include:
- David Austin roses — These are one of the most popular types of roses that are bred to get the best features of both the old and modern garden roses. These roses feature the beautiful shape and fragrance of old garden roses and the repeat blooming quality of modern roses. However, these roses are not disease resistant and cannot withstand extreme conditions.
- Hybrid tea roses — Hybrid tea roses are types of modern roses that come in a variety of colors and feature long stems and big flowers. They are quite delicate and require more care.
- Miniature roses — Miniature roses are a type of hybrid tea roses that have a much smaller flower size, smaller stem length, and come in a variety of colors. These roses are much stronger than tea roses and have a longer shelf life, hence they are preferred over other types.
- Polyantha roses — Polyantha roses are smaller sized roses that usually grow in bunches. They are strong and sturdy as compared to other types and come in red, pink, and white colors. They are also easier to take care of.
- Floribunda roses — Floribunda roses are a hybrid form of polyantha and hybrid tea roses. They look much like hybrid tea leaves with a significantly larger flower size. They grow in bushes and have strong stems.
- Grandiflora roses — Grandiflora roses are a blend of floribunda and tea roses with long stems and large flowers.
- Shrub roses — Shrub roses are characterized by their cabbage-like shape and are a blend of old and modern roses. They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are very easy to take care of. They bloom repeatedly and are low-maintenance.
Different types of roses come in a variety of colors. Some roses feature a single color whereas others have dual or multiple tones. Traditionally and in modern culture as well, the colors of flowers and specifically roses symbolize different feelings and emotions. These are discussed as under:
A red colored rose symbolizes love, romance, passion, and desire. Since olden times, red roses have been used to convey feelings of love and passion. From emotions ranging from affection, longing, admiration, love, desire, and romance, a red rose says them all.
Pink roses are mainly a symbol of joy, happiness, gratitude, and appreciation. They also symbolize femininity, elegance, and admiration. Light hues of pink in roses are usually used to symbolize elegance and innocence whereas deeper hues of pink roses help convey the deeper emotions of gratitude and appreciation.
Pink roses are ideal for occasions where you want to thank someone and to present to someone as a token of gratitude or appreciation.
White roses signify purity, innocence, spirituality, and tranquility. White roses represent new beginnings and help convey the message of accepting challenges to take a fresh breath of air and start anew. White roses also resonate with sending condolences to friends and loved ones as they help convey the message of support and humility.
Orange roses, although not widely used, symbolize deep passion and enthusiasm. They differ from red roses in the message that they convey which is not centered on love. Orange roses give the message of intense energy and enthusiasm about any feeling that can range from love to support to friendship and joy. The deep sun-kissed glow of the orange roses help give energetic, positive, and enthusiastic vibes.
Yellow roses symbolize bright, cheerful, and joyful emotions. They stand for friendship and compassion and are a clear indication that you care. Yellow roses are used to convey warm feelings and a sense of happiness when you want the recipient to feel that their support and friendship bring you immense joy. Yellow rose is also associated with prosperity and success.
A purple rose symbolizes royalty, love, and elegance. The emotions that this flower depicts are not as intense as red or orange roses but definitely deeper and intimate than white and yellow ones. Purple roses are also associated with health and life. Lilac colored roses are generally used to convey positive and happy emotions whereas deep purple roses are associated with mysticism, royalty, and luxury.
Peach roses symbolize gratitude, affection, and sincerity. They are similar to pink roses in the kind of message they give but the peach/cappuccino/latte hues of this rose add a touch of added elegance and style and look more beautiful and unique.
A blue rose is not flowered naturally but is usually dyed on white rose, therefore, it is not as common. However, it can be used to convey emotions such as mysterious desires and confessions. Blue roses are often found in myths and legends and hence they are associated with suspense and mystery.
Green roses are also not available naturally; however, some white roses may have a green tint to their petals that occur naturally. Green is the color that is associated with life, freedom, and energized spirit. Green roses can be used on occasions where you want to convey a cheerful and lively vibe. Emotions of positive support and appreciation can be conveyed with green roses.
Roses can be considered the most popular choice of flowers for any kind of occasion. And why shouldn’t they? Afterall, they are beautiful and come in a variety of colors that symbolize different emotions and feelings. Whatever the occasion, you will always find a rose that is fit for it.
White roses are the go-to roses for any kind of wedding event since they are associated with purity and unity symbolizing the bond of marriage. In some cultures, red roses are also associated with weddings but white roses are the predominantly used ones in weddings.
Love and romance cannot be conveyed better than by using red roses. Sometimes, orange roses may also be used to add in an element of deep passion and desire.
Yellow roses are the perfect symbolization of friendship and support.
For birthdays, you can use different colors of roses bunched together. Red roses as well as pink/peach roses work well on birthdays. Alternatively, a multicolored bouquet of red, pink, yellow, and white roses can also be associated with birthdays.
Pink/Peach or purple colored roses are the perfect gift for mothers whether it is for Mother’s day or for her birthday.
To wish someone good health, you need to use roses that have an uplifting and lively vibe. Therefore, green, yellow, orange, and purple colored roses can be used for this purpose.
Pink and peach colored roses are associated with gratitude and sincerity. Nothing can work better than a bouquet of pink/peach roses when you want to thank someone.
White roses are often the choice of flowers when one wants to sympathize with others or send their condolences. Cream or pale pink roses can also be used for this purpose.
Since roses are considered the best type of flower for almost every occasion, one should be aware of how to care for them when someone gives them so that they stay fresh as long as possible. The following tips can help increase the shelf life of roses so you can enjoy their presence and company longer.
- The first step is to take the flowers out of their bouquet packing so they can be placed in a vase. Take out all the extra leaves and stems that may have been used as fillers in the bouquet and keep only the flowers with their stems.
- The second step is to keep the roses hydrated by placing them in water. For this purpose, you would need to cut some part of the stems from the bottom. Take a sharp pair of scissors and make a diagonal cut to ensure maximum surface area for water absorption.
- Take a vase and fill ⅔ of it with water. If possible, get some flower food from a florist and mix it in the water to increase the flowers’ life. You can even make your own flower food by mixing together 2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 tablespoon sugar, and half tablespoon bleach. This mixture helps slow down the growth of bacteria and fungi.
- Now place the roses inside the vase. Shorten the stem lengths according to the size of the vase. Also remove any leaves from the stems that get submerged in the water to prevent them from being a cause for bacteria growth.
- Now check your roses and remove any dark or wilted petals that are surrounding the actual flower.
- Arrange the roses in the vase according to your preference and place the vase in a cool space away from direct sunlight.
- For an even longer life, cut small portions of the stem diagonally from the bottom of the flowers after every 2-3 days. This ensures that the roses stay fresh for a longer time.
By following these tips, you can make your roses last much longer.
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