The cultural significance and symbolism of Chinese flowers

Flowers have played a significant role in Chinese culture for centuries. They’ve appeared in countless poems, paintings, and other literary works. They’ve also been used in ceremonies and rituals to express emotion and spiritual meanings. If you were a florist in ancient China, you were treated with great respect, notes Helen Lee in her book, The Tao of Beauty.

The most prized bloom was the peony, also known as the “king of flowers” as it was used to decorate emperors’ palaces. Chrysanthemums were called the “Golden Flowers” and played major roles in festivals in addition to being used in celebratory teas. Flowers also were a critical part of feng shui, the practice of arranging items in the home to create balance with the natural world.

The use of flowers as a decoration, gift, or means of communication is still practiced today in China. The styles and messages may be a bit more relaxed, but the meanings are still the same. Living plants and floral arrangements add beauty, peace, and positive energy to your home.

Chrysanthemums, which symbolize happiness and vitality, are a popular autumn flower in China and carry special significance during lunar new year celebrations. Since ancient times, people have drunk wine from mums’ fermented petals. The peony is a symbol of wealth and prosperity and is considered one of the most beautiful flowers in China. Historically, peonies were grown and enjoyed by Chinese emperors and other important people. They decorated peonies in their grand homes and planted them in royal gardens. 

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