Meaning of Orchids

Orchids come in every size, shape and color imaginable.

Orchids come in every size, shape and color imaginable.

Orchids are a popular choice for bouquets, wedding flowers and potted plants. If you're giving an orchid as a gift or choosing them for centerpieces and floral displays, consider the meaning of the orchid you choose. Each color and type of orchid has special significance in the language of flowers.

Ancient Greece

The orchid is named for the Greek word "orchis," which means "testicle." Not surprisingly, orchids are traditionally associated with virility. One orchid, the Paphiopedilum orchid, was named for the temple of Aphrodite, the goddess of love and desire, at Paphos. If you're giving a gift of flowers to the man in your life, you might consider a bouquet of orchids or a potted orchid for a playful and suggestive present.


With their simplicity, vivid color and elegance, orchids are considered a universal symbol of beauty. Long, delicate purple orchids, called ladies' slippers or ladies' tresses in Victorian England, are an especially pretty choice for a romantic bouquet. A gift of orchids adds beauty to any space, whether you opt for cut flowers or a growing orchid.

Mature Love

Orchids are an ideal choice for Mother's Day or a gift for an older female relative. The Cattelya orchid is especially symbolic of maturity and affection. Consider Cattalya orchids for a corsage, arrangement or bouquet. Potted Cattelya orchids are relatively easy to grow, even for someone new to orchids, and may be a good gift for a woman who enjoys gardening.


Choose pink orchids when you want to send a message of pure affection. Pink orchids are ideal for a romantic interest, a dear and treasured friend, or a sibling you adore. Many different types of orchids are available in shades of pink, both as cut and potted flowers. Opt for your favorite pink orchids for a fresh arrangement, or choose an easy-to-grow variety if you're giving a potted orchid.

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