Flowers and Valentine’s Day have been deemed synonymous since time immemorial. There is immense pressure on people and not to mention, an incredible amount of expectation, to make the day memorable for loved ones. But how did this day, celebrated by millions worldwide, come to be?
Legend has it, Valentine’s Day originated during the third century in Rome. During this time, Emperor Claudius II, feeling that single men made better soldiers, outlawed marriage for young men. A young priest named Valentine, indignant, defied Claudius by continuing to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. Claudius eventually discovered Valentine’s actions and sentenced him to death. During his time in jail, Valentine fell in love with his jailer’s daughter, who used to visit him in prison. Before he was put to death, Valentine sent a letter to the girl and signed it, “From Your Valentine” — an expression we still use today. Valentine was executed on February 14, 270 AD. The end of the story may be a bummer for many, but the day is undoubtedly one of the most widely celebrated days worldwide.
As well as chocolates and candlelit dinners, flowers are the face of Valentine’s Day. For centuries, flowers have symbolised fertility, love, marriage, and romance. But what most of us fail to realise is flowers for your Valentine don’t always have to be roses. Who knew?
If you have a loved one you’re planning to surprise this 14th, surprise them by not giving them roses.
Here are five beautiful alternatives to red roses to surprise your person:
Roses aren’t just red
Many may think of roses as a cliché option for Valentine’s Day; however, you may be surprised to learn that there many other species of roses to choose from.
When buying them as a Valentine’s Day gift, instead of red, you can opt for pink and white, both of which are available at most local floral shops. Each shade has its very own meaning, red for love, pink for sweetness and white for purity. If you want to experiment a little, opt for a mixture of red and white roses as it symbolises unity.
What most of us fail to realise is flowers for your Valentine don’t always have to be roses
Tulip – the flower that symbolises balance and unity
Renowned for their bulb heads and curving leaves, tulips in Bangladesh mostly come in shades of baby pink, yellow and a white-purple hue. Unlike most flowers, tulips boast a unique quality, as they continue to grow long after they’ve been cut. A bouquet of bright tulips is a great option for those wishing to give a gift that’s not too elaborate but still says “I love you.” If you’re a duo who’ve been together a while, this is a great option for you since tulips are also a symbol of balance and comfort.
The dahlia for the elegant
An unconventional pick for the unconventional couple.When given as a gift, the dahlia flower expresses sentiments of dignity and elegance. It is also the symbol of a commitment and bond that lasts forever. If you are one of those people who don’t want to go too overboard with a plethora of red roses, but at the same time, you want to give flowers in a way that show off your classy taste, then the dahlia is for you. But beware, this one is a rarity at even the most renown flower shops in Shahbag and often run out in the wee hours of the morning. So if the Dahlia is your pick this 14th, be prepared to put in that effort.
Lilies – for the fashionista in your life
Lilies are a great option for those who want to celebrate Valentine’s in the Caribbean islands but are too broke for it. If you want a tropical ring to your celebrations, then the lily is an ideal option. White lilies complement red roses too so you can experiment here as well.
Orchids for the traveller
Orchids are reminiscent of the far-off places they hail from (Hawaii, Brazil, the Amazon Basin), adding an exotic hint of fantasy to your floral mix. Orchids in particular are delicate and graceful, representing love, luxury, beauty and strength. Another option other than plain old roses.
“But, what if my girl hates flowers?”
We all have these women in our lives, don’t we? You know what to do.
Munzereen Shahid is a writer, food enthusiast and an avid shower singer. A college student with big dreams, a love for pandas and a major case of wanderlust.