The History of Mother's Day Flowers

Did you ever wonder about the history of Mother's Day’s flowers?

Spring is usually associated with the revival of nature – beautiful flourishing gardens and green landscapes come to most people’s minds when they hear the name of this season. But besides the adorable gardens, people often think about one of the most popular spring holydays – Mother’s Day. The founder of Mother’s Day is Anna Jarvis who was born in West Virginia and remained childless her whole life. This lady organized the first Mother’s Day celebration and used carnations which were the favorite flowers of her mother to honor everything mothers do for their children and for the society.

mini carnations Lightly fragrant long lasting miniature carnations

Anna Jarvis’s mother – Mrs. Anna Marie Reeves Jarvis inspired her to celebrate Mothers Day as she had often expressed her wish to honor all mothers’ contributions. So when Anna’s mother died in 1905, she decided to fulfill her desire and put an end to most American’s bad attitude to their moms. Carnations’ role in Mother’s Day begun when Anna sent 500 carnations to the church in West Virginia in honor of her mother. Mrs. Anna Marie Reeves Jarvis found carnations as darling garden care flowers so her daughter used them to symbolize her love and sorrow of her mother. People were so impressed that they supported Anna and start lobbying with her for Mother’s Day to be announced as an official holiday. After the holiday was declared in 1914 by President Woodrow Wilson florists and gardeners saw a great business opportunity and started selling excessive amounts of carnations a few days before the celebration. Anna Jarvis stood up against this practice and were really hurt by the commercialization of her mother’s favorite spring garden flowers. In 1923 she even tried to stop the celebration of Mother's Day by disturbing white carnations sellers, but eventually got arrested for her public order violation.

 

standard carnation - mother's day flowers Carnations were the original symbol of Mother's Day

Anna Jarvis undertook a campaign against the U.S. Postal Service’s stamp depicting white carnations that was published in the 1930s for Mother's Day. She wanted the words “Mother's Day” to be removed from the stamp, but did not have an objection about the carnations. Nowadays giving flowers for Mother's Day have become a traditional way for people to express gratitude for their mothers’ care, love and kindness. Carnations are still the most sought flowers for this holiday and have turned into its emblem. Their endurance and purity made them even more popular on Mother's Day. Gardeners cultivate new colors of carnations almost every year, but red, white and pink remain the most common ones. For instance, wearing a white carnation is to honor a deceased mother, wearing a pink carnation is to honor a living mother. The colored flowers are gifted to a living mother, while deceased mothers are most often honored with white carnations that people bring to their grave sites. In Japan, for example, red carnations are the typical Mother's Day flowers. In addition to the beautiful flowers, contemporary celebrations of Mother's Day including children serving breakfast in their mothers’ beds and giving them different types of gifts. This special day is very profitable not only for the gardening industry, but also for plenty of restaurants as families do not allow mom to cook the dinner.

One thought on “The History of Mother's Day Flowers”

  • David Morris

    Well, people use these beautiful flowers to express their love to their mother as mother's day is a specific occasion to express your love and respect to your mother.

    Reply
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