To please a loved one with flowers, it is not enough just to choose fresh, beautiful plants: the size, color, and the number of stems in a bouquet are important in the composition. Color symbolism usually comes down to questions of taste, but in the number of plants one can be mistaken in such a way that the recipient of the bouquet will receive only disappointment instead of the pleasure of the gift. There are no clear rules dictating how many flowers to give in a given situation – only recommendations based on the country’s cultural traditions and common sense. Knowing these guidelines will help you avoid the awkward situations that can happen when giving flowers.
Before Christianity, the main religion of the Slavs was paganism, in which even and odd numbers had opposite meanings. The even ones were a symbol of symmetry and rest – stopping, including the life cycle. The odd ones symbolized the movement accompanying life. So in the culture of our people the tradition of giving bouquets with an even number of flowers to the deceased has become entrenched. It is customary to give alive compositions with an odd number of stems.
There is no such tradition in eastern and western countries, so a flower gift for a European or American must have an even number of stems in the composition. But the Japanese can be given any even number of flowers, except for four: “four” in Japanese is consonant with the word “death”, so flower arrangements with such a number of plants in this country cannot be given to living people.
There is no symbolism here: when choosing a bouquet as a gift, you need to think about how comfortable the recipient will be. The concept of comfort is interpreted broadly and includes:
Florists do not have a unanimous opinion on how many flowers can be given, but there is a rule of a dozen: if there are more than twelve stems in a monobouquet, their number does not matter and can be either unpaired or paired. You should also not worry about the number of flowers of one type in prefabricated compositions: they can combine several pairs of plants of different types. Bouquets of bush plants can be made up of a pair of twigs: their inflorescences consist of many small buds, the number of which is not usually counted.
Try to find out in advance how superstitious the recipient of flowers is. If he considers thirteen flowers in a bouquet a sign of misfortune or is upset when he receives fourteen roses as a gift, do not listen to the recommendations of florists. Happy birthday to a superstitious person who turns an even number of years, he is given one flower more or less than his age.
Acceptable options for bouquets are determined by the reason for which they are presented, and the degree of closeness between the donor and the recipient. In addition, the size of the composition depends on the species of plants of which it is composed. Large buds or inflorescences allow you to give flowers one by one: this is done with roses, gerberas, sunflowers or hydrangeas. The smaller the bud, the more magnificent the composition should be.
If the flowers are intended for an unfamiliar person, the bouquet may include 3-5 plants, which can be diluted with decorative greenery. A loved one can be presented with a composition of seven to fifteen flowers, depending on their size and type of holiday. Family members are usually given their favorite plants, and their number is selected according to the significance of the date.
According to the same rules, bouquets are selected for name days and anniversaries: how many flowers are given for a birthday depends on the birthday person’s preferences, the donor’s financial situation and the relationship between them.
Bouquets of flowers from medium and large buds, recommended by florists for various occasions:
If the recipient of the bouquet is familiar with numerical symbolism, the number of plants in the composition can be selected according to the value that you put into the gift.
Bouquets with more than 21 flowers are usually given only to family members and close people on significant dates.