Why do brides carry ﬂowers?
They represent sending good wishes. The ancient Romans incorporated ﬂowers into wedding ceremonies because they were known as symbols of fertility, ﬁdelity, and new beginnings! What ﬂowers would you pick for a new beginning? Who knew the flowers you picked could have such meaning??
Gladiolus and Poppy
The August birth ﬂowers, gladiolus and poppy, both symbolize remembrance. These two summer bloomers come in a variety of colors and make for great cut ﬂowers. Gladiolus, a symbol of strength and love, provides height to the garden and a splash of much-needed color in the ﬁnal full month of the summer season. The poppy, known best for its red color and made famous by a poem written more than a century ago,
has long been associated with those lost during times of war.
The gladiolus is a member of the Iris family (Iridaceae) and is native to Africa, the Mediterranean, and southern Europe, with more than 300 species that come in a range of vibrant colors. Also known as “sword lily,” the gladiolus got its name from the sword-like appearance of its leaves. “Gladiolus” itself comes from the Latin word gladius, meaning “sword.” The stalks appear in early summer, producing foliage that reaches between 2- to 5-feet-tall, depending on the variety. The ﬂowers are classiﬁed in ﬁve categories that indicate size, from large-ﬂowered and miniature.
Gladiolus Meanings and Symbolism
The ﬂower has long been a symbol of strength, victory, healing, and honor. It has also been associated with moral character, remembrance, and intelligence. In Victorian times, romantics believed that the beauty of the gladiolus could pierce another’s heart with love. In ﬂoral meanings, the ﬂower also came to symbolize infatuation, love at ﬁrst sight, and faithfulness. Each color holds a different meaning: Red symbolizes love, romance, and passion; pink means compassion and a mother’s love; white represents innocence and purity; yellow symbolizes friendship and joy; and purple means fortune and beauty. In addition to being one of the August birth ﬂowers, the gladiolus is traditionally given as a gift for 40th anniversaries.
The Gladiolus in History
The ﬁrst South African species was brought to Europe in the mid-18th century. By the early 19th century, enthusiasts in England began the process of hybridizing the ﬂowers and making them more well suited to the home gardens. In ancient Rome, the gladiolus was known as the ﬂower of the gladiators, with spectators covering the winner of the ﬁght in the colorful blooms. It became popular in the U.S. around the turn of the 20th century, which led to the creation of the American Gladiolus Society in Boston in 1910.
The 10 Best Beach Flowers for Your Wedding
1. Calla Lilies
The trumpet-shaped bloom of calla lilies mimics the shape of a wave, making them the perfect beach flower! This timeless bloom looks great on its own, as well as the focal point of larger bouquets and arrangements. Calla lilies are stand alone flowers that can speak for itself with a sleek and sophisticated look.
2. King Protea
The tropical king protea is a dramatic show stopper. Its circular, crown-shaped flower with spikes is the largest type of protea and can vary from red, green, white and pink. This tropical bloom will add texture and an exotic touch to any beach bouquet. Its oval-shaped petals and white fuzzy texture in the center will definitely make a statement.
3. Oriental Lilies
Oriental lilies are also known as “the Queen of Flowers,” and rightfully so! They are star-shaped flowers with large petals that exhibit ruffled margins. These flowers are also full of fragrance. They’re available in a variety of shades, including white, hot pink and yellow.
4. Monstera Leaves
Monstera leaves are bright green and large — they’re as a big as a plate and perfect for table-scapes and centerpieces! Their overall unique shape makes them a popular for beach weddings.
Orchids are beautiful line flowers that have multiple blooms per stem and add height and texture to a floral arrangement. Orchids come in many varieties and colors.
6. Birds of Paradise
If you’re looking for something tropical, birds of paradise fit the bill. These lovely flowers feature orange and royal blue petals and a beak-like center, giving them the appearance of tropical birds. Birds of paradise represent love, thoughtfulness and faithfulness.
7. Pin Cushions
Bright and colorful pin cushions are a tropical bloom that nicely complements a sunny, cheerful beach wedding.
Anthurium is another fabulous tropical flower to consider adding to your mix or beach florals. Anthuriums flowers are available in a variety of shapes, colors and patterns which makes them the ideal flowers for beach wedding decorations.
9. Xerographica Tillandsia Wedding Air Plants
Xerographica tillandsia is a one-of-a-kind floral to add to your beach bouquet. Their unique shape is reminiscent of a starfish, making them a beautiful accent to your other beach flowers.
Just because you’re having a beach wedding doesn’t mean you have to use tropical flowers. You can use traditional classics like roses. No matter the setting of your wedding, roses will always be fitting as beach flowers. Roses come in every color, size and style so you can find one to fit your aesthetic.