You might think you know what the flowers you give/receive on St Valentine’s Day mean, for instance ‘I love you,’ but what message do they really convey?

We consulted Flora Symbolica: The Language and Sentiment of Flowers, a Victorian oracle on such matters, to find out.

flora symbolica

* Anemones – withered hopes; forsaken
Purple Anemones.jpg

* Daffodils – unrequited love

daffodils.jpg

* Hyacinths (purple) – sorrowful

 hyacinths.jpg

* Hyacinths (white) – unobtrusive loveliness

 white hyacinths.jpg

* Jonquil (small narcissus) – I desire a return of affection

 Jonquil.jpg

* Lily (white) – purity and sweetness

 white lily.jpg

* Ranunculus – you are radiant with charms

Ranunculus.jpg

* Roses, deep red – bashful shame

Red_Roses.jpg

* Roses, white – I am worthy of you

white roses.jpg

* Roses, yellow – decrease of love; jealousy

yellow roses.JPG

* Snowdrops – hope; a friend in need

snowdrops

* Tuberose – dangerous pleasures

 Tuberose.jpg

* Tulips – a declaration of love

 tulips.JPG

* Wallflower – fidelity in adversity

 wallflower.jpg