Hydrangeas are a very popular choice for gifting due to their large beautiful blooms. The name of hydrangea came from the Greek word “hydor”, which means water, and “angors”, which means jar or vessel. It was named this way due to its resemblance to an ancient water pitcher. Plus, it is rather the perfect name for hydrangeas as they require plenty of water and moisture to be happy and blooming.
Hydrangeas has been historically significant in Japan, where it was first cultivated. Blooming during the rainy season, they transform places like the Meigetsuin Temple into a hydrangea heaven. It has even become a must-visit place for hydrangea appreciation! Legends has it that a Japanese emperor gifted hydrangea to the family of a girl he loved as an apology for neglecting her.
The Japanese were not the only ones who have enjoyed the vibrant colours of hydrangeas for centuries. Hydrangeas are also found in North America and Europe. With the world becoming more interconnected due to globalisation and international trade, the flowers can now be enjoyed everywhere in the world.
The symbolism of hydrangeas remains debatable. Japanese contemporary florists often use hydrangeas to portray genuine and pure emotions. Their European counterparts in the Victorian era thought otherwise, where hydrangeas were sent to label someone as a braggart. Victorian men also send hydrangeas to women after getting rejected to suggest that they are frigid. What poor taste! Despite the opposing views in the meaning of hydrangeas, there is however a consensus that hydrangeas are flowers to symbolise the 4th wedding anniversary, having symbolic meanings such as devotion, understanding and thankfulness.
Pink hydrangeas are often linked to love and romance. Purple hydrangeas are often given to indicate a desire for gaining deeper understanding of another or to symbolise abundance and wealth. White hydrangeas symbolises purity, innocence and grace. It could also mean arrogance and vanity as well. Blue hydrangeas are connected to gratitude, understanding and apology, it could also mean frigidity.
Despite all these variations in symbolism, hydrangeas are a popular choice for many floral arrangements due to its beauty. They look like a bunch of butterflies flying together!