hydrangea symbolism

Hydrangea Flower Meaning and Symbolism

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Regardless of where you live in the world, the elegant hydrangea is likely a staple in your backyard garden.

This elegant flower has captivated people all over the world with its bright fragrance and gentle beauty, but its true meaning lies beyond its visual appearance.

This flower has some impressive symbolism, and you’ll want to grow or give one even more once you find out what it means.

What Does Hydrangea Mean?

The name “hydrangea” was first coined in modern Latin in 1753 by Linnaeus. The word is a compound of the Greek words “hydr” (a stem of the word “hydor,” which means water) and “angeion,” which means “vessel.” The name is a testament to the cup-shaped seed pods of the flower. 

hydrangea meaning

What Does the Hydrangea Flower Symbolize?

The hydrangea species has several deep meanings depending on the color and culture in which it is viewed. It can portray heartfelt, honest emotions of any kind, along with basic sentiments like gratitude, understanding, and abundance.

Often viewed as a sign of grace and beauty, the hydrangea’s symbolism can sometimes be taken a bit further- some view it as a symbol of vanity and narcissism!

However, more often than not, it is tied to sentiments of thanksgiving and forgiveness. Depending on the hydrangea types and colors, the meaning might vary.

What Does a Blue Hydrangea Mean?

blue hydrangea

Blue and pink are two of the most common hydrangea colors. As blue is a cool color, it only makes sense that blue hydrangeas are connected to feelings of rigidity. They are often sent to express a desire for forgiveness, regret, or rejection.

What Does a Pink Hydrangea Mean?

pink hydrangea meaning

Pink hydrangeas, like blue, are very common. In fact, hydrangea colors can vary from pink to blue (with every shade in between) depending on the soil pH.

Pink hydrangeas are most often viewed in a positive light, with the color symbolizing romance, love, marriage, and other heartfelt emotions. 

What Does a Purple Hydrangea Symbolize?

purple hydrangea meaning

Purple hydrangeas, halfway between pink and blue shades, generally symbolize a desire to understand someone on a deeper level.

The color purple is also representative of wealth and abundance, so a purple hydrangea can also represent prosperity. 

What Does A White Hydrangea Mean?

white hydrangea flower

A white hydrangea holds symbolic significance often associated with purity, innocence, and grace. The pristine color of these blooms makes them a timeless choice, representing new beginnings and elegance. White hydrangeas are frequently chosen for weddings, symbolizing the purity of love and the grace of the occasion.

Additionally, their classic and versatile nature makes them suitable for various settings, conveying a sense of timelessness. In more somber contexts, white hydrangeas are also used to express sympathy and remembrance, offering a message of peace and tranquility in funeral arrangements.

What is the Cultural Significance of the Hydrangea?

Depending on where you live, the cultural significance of the hydrangea might take on different meanings. In Japan, the flower is linked to gratitude.

The story goes that an emperor once gave hydrangeas to a maiden as a symbol of his love and as an apology for his distraction with his work. Today, florists in Japan use the hydrangea to represent genuine, heartfelt emotion.

Victorians looked down upon the hydrangea and as a result, it was not a popular plant. These beautiful blooms were often sent to those that were viewed as braggarts, but could also be sent to chastise someone. According to medieval legend, a woman who grew hydrangeas would never find a husband. 

What is the Symbolism of a Hydrangea Flower Tattoo?

There are many meanings to a hydrangea flower tattoo. Although this flower often symbolizes frigidity and a lack of sympathy, a hydrangea tattoo has a totally different meaning.

In most cases, it means recognizing someone’s gratitude toward you and being appreciative of what others have to offer you. 

When Should You Give Someone a Hydrangea Flower? 

A beautiful and delicate bouquet of hydrangeas can be given to just about anyone. They can be used on many different occasions, including when you want to convey a heartfelt emotion, give thanks, or express an apology.

More often than not, hydrangea flowers are given on fourth wedding anniversaries, too. Just pay attention to the color of the hydrangea, and you can give this flower to just about anybody.

See more: How to care for hydrangeas

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