Giving flowers on Valentine’s Day is a tradition that goes back several centuries. It may have its roots in a Swedish tradition started in the 18th century. Historians are not sure exactly when giving roses first became a token of love, however. Red roses have long symbolized fertility and true love, and they were often used in weddings. In addition, the sweet scent of flowers was once thought to ward off disease – giving flowers, therefore ensured the receiver’s good health. Despite the lack of concrete historical data regarding the rose’s tradition, we do know these things and more.

1. Roses Send a Message

Charity-Green1Bouquets of flowers were once used as a way to send a message to the receiver, discretely. During many time periods in history, significant numbers of people were illiterate. Sending flowers was one clear way to send a message without the need for words. In the case of roses, the message is love. It is no surprise that to send roses became popular for a holiday celebrating love.

2. Roses symbolise love

Red roses have traditionally symbolised romantic love. Pink roses can symbolise this too, but some people feel that pink represents a chaste form of love or simply gratitude and caring thoughts. Yellow and white roses symbolize friendship and peace, respectively. These are less commonly given on Valentine’s Day — unless they are used as part of a large bouquet.

3. Roses Express Love Even From a Distance

When you are unable to be with your loved one, you can send roses, knowing that the message will be very clear. Cards are lovely to send, but lack the beauty that roses offer.

Roses will stay fresh for many days – sometimes weeks – if kept properly. When they have finally started to wilt, your beloved may then dry the petals to keep as a token of your love.

4. The Red Rose is Attributed to the Goddess Aphrodite

All of the Greek goddesses have symbols and sacred plants associated with them. Aphrodite, the goddess of love, lust and fertility is associated with the red rose.

5. Most Women Prefer Roses

Most women associate roses with romance and prefer their beloved send roses rather than other flowers – indeed, sending a bouquet of anything other than roses may cause unpleasant emotions. Unless your loved one has specifically asked for another kind of flower, you should always send roses.