close up of white flower petals for white flower bouquet

The History & Meanings of White Flower Bouquets

When it comes to flower arrangements and bouquets, white is an enduring, much-loved choice. White flowers can symbolise purity, freshness, new beginnings and innocence. White flowers can also be a good choice for almost anyone and almost any situation. Their fresh neutrality will suit every décor and be offset beautifully by green foliage. 

Of course there are times when white is really the best choice for flower bouquets. So, let’s look at the times when a white flower bouquet is the perfect choice, and the meanings of some of our favourite white blooms.  

White flower bouquet

A flower bouquet is synonymous with so many occasions: from birth to death, weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, and even Olympic medal ceremonies. The formal arrangement of flowers into a small hand-held bouquet is said to have been a part of human history since ancient Egyptian times

White flowers can often be overlooked in favour of vibrant, colourful blooms. But a white flower bouquet is an enduring and perfect choice for so many occasions. 

When to give a white flower bouquet

close up of white flower bouquet against white and yellow pillows

As you’ll see from our discussion below about the symbolism of popular white flowers, a beautiful bouquet of fresh white flowers can be the perfect choice to congratulate, delight, express sympathy, send apologies, say thank you or show your love. 

In a mixed bouquet, they can bring freshness and calm to your home, the home of a loved one, an office space or staffroom. As white is ‘all the colours reflected back to us’, it plays well with whatever style, colour or theme of the space in which it is displayed. 

White flowers at home or work

White flowers are a lovely choice to display in your home or office, or to send a friend or loved one. Choosing flowers to complement your style can be an important factor, as can choosing the right vase to best display them! A white-on-white bouquet of blooms is elegant, timeless, and sophisticated. And beautifully displayed in a vase, your all white bouquet will add freshness and tranquillity to your home.  

Our suggestion: White Seasonal Bunch

The meanings of white flowers

White roses

close up of white flower bouquet of roses

White roses traditionally mean purity, new beginnings, and peace (whether that is remembrance or to express sympathy). White roses are a lovely choice for a bridal bouquet or to congratulate someone on their new home, new job or on graduating from school or university. 

A bouquet of white roses can also mark the start of a new pregnancy or relationship. They can be sent to celebrate a birth. Or can be chosen as an expression of sympathy on someone’s passing or on the anniversary of someone’s death.  

White chrysanthemums

close up of white flower bouquet featuring chrysanthemums against an all white background

In Australia, white chrysanthemums are synonymous with loyalty and honesty. But in Western Europe, China and Japan, a bouquet of white chrysanthemums would be chosen for mourning or grief. However, no matter the occasion, these delicate white blooms are sure to bring peace and light to the loved ones in your life.

White carnations

small bunch of white carnations lying flat on a green background

Our enduring Flower Farm favourite, the carnation, is the perfect flower for so many occasions. For a white flower bouquet, both carnations and gerberas are traditionally associated with pure love, such as a mother’s love. For this reason, a bouquet of white carnations is an excellent choice for Mothers’ Day

White lilies

large bunch of white lilies with green stems

In Australia, the fragrant white lily is traditionally chosen to express sympathy or send condolences. Its association with purity and innocence is thought to be a sign of respect for the person who has passed. 

White tulips

A bouquet of white tulips is commonly chosen to send apologies, as they are symbolic of forgiveness. In modern times they’ve often been chosen as wedding flowers, particularly religious services, as they can also represent honour, purity and holiness. This also makes them the perfect choice for a religious milestone like a communion or baptism.

White orchids

White orchids are symbolic of innocence and purity. This makes them a wonderful choice to express hope or to celebrate new beginnings. Their elegant shape also makes them popular for bridal bouquets. White orchids are also a lovely choice for baby showers or to welcome a new baby.

Ready to send your own bouquet of white flowers?

At The Flower Farm, we can create a white floral bouquet out of the freshest, most beautiful local white blooms. Get in touch today to send your best wishes for a special occasion or just because. Our florists would love to create a bespoke white bouquet for you.