The Secret Code of . . . Flowers!

You’re probably not going to believe this, but there’s a secret way of passing messages using . . . flowers! OK, I know, it’s not exactly 007, but the Victorians sent secret messages to their boyfriends and girlfriends by giving them a particular flower.

I only know this because I was recently sent some bunches of flowers to say ‘Get Well Soon’ . . .

flowers - from oup

So I googled ‘why we send flowers’ and discovered:


‘The secret language of flowers’

Which all sounds very romantic. But if you’re thinking of sending someone special some flowers – you might need to be careful. . .

flower - carnation

A pink carnation says: I will never forget you.


But a yellow carnation means: disappointment and rejection.

Blimey, that could be a bit risky if you’re colour-blind.

flower - daisy

The humble daisy says: I’ll never tell.

Ooooh . . . secrets!

flower - clematis

But the clematis means: cunning and trickery.

Oooer! That sounds a bit dodgy!

flower - sunflower

A sunflower warns of: pride or false riches – but only if it’s a tall one.

If it’s a dwarf sunflower it means: adoration.

Oh, for crying out loud – how confusing is that!?

And don’t even ask about Hyacinths!

A blue one means: consistency, but a yellow one says: jealousy.

Whereas a purple one says: sorry, but a red or pink one means: joy.

BTW if anyone sends you a turnip it apparently says: charity.

Seriously? Who sends anyone a turnip!

Couldn’t find out which flower says: “My new book is out on Nov 5th” – but here it is anyway!

Nixie Winter Wonderland



6 thoughts on “The Secret Code of . . . Flowers!

  1. How about holly for Nixie’s Winter Wonderland or flowering cactus? Better still, why not the biggest mixed bunch of flowers you can find. And cake. Naturally. CONGRATULATIONS 😉

  2. Happy book birthday for tomorrow! I just finished reading ‘Forget Me Not’ from Jo Cotterill’s Sweet Heart series and when I opened this post up I was surprised to find out that the language of flowers was your topic, when I had just read about it in Jo’s book!

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