Long time ago, people in Japan used to make poetry, called Waka, to express their emotions and feelings to profess their love in a love letter or store their feelings in diary. Waka describing flowers and seasons are thought to be more elegant and more romantic. Though those customs were set by people in the past, the connection between people and flowers has transcended time and continues to have a strong presence in current day Japan. For example, children will give their mothers carnations, whose hanakotoba is ‘appreciation’, on Mother’s Day. It is kind of similar to the custom of sending people cards for specific occasions in the United States. Because each flower has a specific hanakotoba, many Japanese buy flowers instead of cards and just send the flowers to people instead of writing the message.
Below are some hanakotoba of some common flowers:
I love you – Rose
I’m into you – Peach
eternal love – Tulip
true love – Margaret
my eyes are only for you – Sun Flower
think of me – Pansy
beautiful heart, elegant lady – Cherry Blossom
love to mother, appreciation – Carnation
lady’s heart, sincere heart – Cosmos
perfect beauty, mysterious beauty – Gerbera
see more hanakotoba?