Symbolic Flowers for Mother's Day: What Each Bloom Represents

  • Mar, 27 , 23
  • Thanks A Bunch Florist

Flowers are a popular gift for Mother's Day, and for a good reason. Not only do they brighten up any room with their beauty and fragrance, but they also carry deep symbolic meanings that can convey a range of emotions and sentiments. In this post, we'll explore the meanings behind some of the most popular flowers given on Mother's Day, and how you can use them to create a personalised bouquet for your mom.


Roses are a traditional Mother's Day flower and appear in a variety of colours, each of which has its own symbolic meaning. Red roses represent love and passion, while pink roses convey gratitude and appreciation. White roses symbolise purity and innocence, yellow roses are associated with friendship and joy. To create a personalised rose arrangement, you can mix and match different colours to represent the different aspects of your relationship with your mum. For example, a bouquet with a combination of red and pink roses could convey deep love and gratitude, while a mix of white and yellow roses could represent the pure and joyful bond of a mother and child.


Carnations are another popular flower for Mother's Day, with a history that dates back to the early 20th century. Anna Jarvis, the founder of Mother's Day, chose carnations as the official flower of the holiday because they were her mother's favourite. Different colours of carnations carry different meanings. Pink carnations symbolise a mother's love, while white carnations represent purity and good luck. Red carnations are associated with admiration and love, while yellow carnations are said to bring cheerfulness and joy. You can use these meanings to create a unique bouquet for your mum, such as a combination of pink and white carnations to represent a mother's pure and unconditional love.


Lilies are another flower commonly associated with Mother's Day, and they come in a variety of types, each with its own symbolism. White white lilies symbolise purity and innocence, pink lilies represent love and admiration. Orange lilies convey warmth and happiness, while yellow lilies are associated with gratitude and thankfulness. Lilies are also believed to be a symbol of motherhood, making them a particularly meaningful choice for Mother's Day. To create a beautiful lily arrangement, you can mix and match different colours to create a bouquet representing your unique relationship with your mum.

Other Symbolic Flowers

While lilies, roses, and carnations are among the most popular flowers for Mother's Day bouquets, there are many other blossoms that have significant meanings. Chrysanthemums, also known as "mums", are a common option for Mother's Day gifts because they stand for love, honour, and dedication. Chrysanthemums are the ideal flower to send to mums on their special day because of their vibrant, cheerful colours and lasting blooms. Chrysanthemums make an elegant and thoughtful present for any mother, whether they are given as a bouquet or planted in a garden.

The History of Mother's Day Flowers

While giving flowers on Mother's Day has become a profoundly ingrained custom in our society, this wasn't always the case. Mother's Day's beginnings can be found in the early 1900s when Anna Jarvis launched a drive to make Mother's Day a recognised national holiday. During the Civil War, Jarvis's mother worked to bring mothers from opposing sides of the war together as peace activists. After her mother's death, Jarvis wanted to honour her mother and all mothers by creating a holiday dedicated to celebrating them. She chose carnations as the official flower of the holiday because they were her mother's favourite flowers. She would often wear a white carnation, and Anna continued the tradition by wearing a carnation on the first official Mother's Day in 1908. The tradition of giving flowers on Mother's Day soon caught on, with carnations becoming a symbol of the holiday.