Flowers: The Language of Romance

    Juliet said that a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet. She’s right on the money, but for some guys, knowing the right name is important. Indeed, whatever the name, a gift of flowers alone will be appreciated. To see that extra sparkle in her eye, however, requires extra thought on which flowers to give.

    Some women are picky about flowers while others are indifferent toward them, but it is, of course, Valentine’s Day. If you’re going to be spending some cash on flowers, be sure to at least choose the right kind. The best blossoms to give to your leading lady are the ones you know she likes best. If you don’t know her favorite, ask her friends or roommates who might. But for those of you who are clueless and think that any flower will do, consider the following words of advice:

    The Rose

    The safest bet is the rose. Valentine’s Day without red roses is like St. Patrick’s Day without shamrocks, or a birthday party without cake. As an everlasting symbol of love, the red, red rose will not fail to delight your valentine. If you believe them to be too cliche but can’t manage to ignore them entirely, try tweaking their image. There are other colors in the spectrum of a rose’s versatility, though red is its dominant color. Consider pink or amber roses, cream ones with pink edges or lavender ones, if you can find them. Have faith in roses and try to look past their high price.

    The Carnation

    “Carnations seem so impersonal and last minute,” Thurgood Marshall College junior Cathy Lee said. “It’s what you get at the end of the year in high school for participating in a club along with 200 other members.”

    Don’t try to give carnations to your significant other on Valentine’s Day unless you know she loves them. Although they’re fairly pretty to look at, carnations have the reputation of being the cheaper flower option, which, unfortunately enough, causes some disdain. But unlike roses, carnations have a long vase life and will live longer to impress your lover.

    The Orchid

    As a symbol of perfection, orchids are yet another option for a Valentine’s gift. More commonly seen in Hawaiian leis or balmy California backyards, orchids still hold the potential to be an alluring gift. Ranging from deep purples to yellow to creamy white, orchids have an exotic aura to them that will surprise your valentine.

    The Mixed Bouquet

    Already arranged and prepared according to the visual aesthetic of the florist, a bouquet of mixed flowers is the easy way out. However, it is crucial to choose the right bunch. Some bouquets are more tastefully arranged than others, while some can be a horrible mass of color-clashing weeds. Focus on the bouquets with simpler combinations and avoid the ones that have too much leafy foliage.

    The Calla Lily

    For a less conventional option, give your girlfriend a bouquet of calla lilies. With their long stems and simple shape, these satiny white, trumpetlike blooms have an air of elegance to them that is perfect for the sophisticated woman. Remember that in many cases, simplicity is key.

    Take heed when buying flowers that have special meaning. Daisies and lilies are symbols of innocence and purity, while irises and poppies represent death. Yellow roses signify varying meanings of friendship or infidelity.

    Whether it’s daisies or peonies, sunflowers or daffodils, much can be expressed in the gift of a charming bouquet, as it shows that you care on the one day you can pamper your lover or potential lover-to-be. So good luck with your flower-giving endeavors and more flower power to you.

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