Flower Giving Etiquette When Gifting Different People

As you probably know already, flowers are amazing gifts for different kinds of occasions and recipients. But different flowers also have different meanings, and like with any other gift proper timing is crucial.

To ensure your floral gift effectively conveys the right message, there are a few rules to follow when gifting flowers depending on who they are intended for.

Without further ado, here’s a brief look at flower gifting etiquette for different types of recipients.

1. Your Date 

If you want to give flowers to someone you are dating, it is important to consider the meaning of the flowers you send. For instance, lilies and roses tend to have romantic overtures, and probably shouldn’t be sent to someone that hasn’t been your special someone yet.

Besides the flower type, other things to consider when sending romantic flowers may include:

  • The recipient’s personality: This means choosing a flower that resonates with his or her personality
  • Your stage in dating (casual, just getting started, or serious relationship): If it’s a casual date, something subtle and simple would suffice. You may also want to avoid spending too much on the flower bouquet. 

2. A Spouse

If you’re married, you and your significant other will most likely understand each other, and you know that giving someone flowers is a gift of love. 

So, if your sweetheart brings home a bouquet of tulips, roses, orchids, hydrangeas, or daisies in the colors red, pink, white, yellow, or purple, there’s most likely a special occasion to celebrate. Giving flowers to a spouse on occasions like anniversaries and birthdays is always appropriate. 

Flowers also make great gifts for Mother’s Day and other special holidays like Valentine’s Day or Women’s Day. For most couples, utilizing coupons from flower delivery services is also a way to send flowers occasionally to their spouses without exceeding their monthly or annual budgets.

3. A Friend 

There are so many reasons why you’d want to give a friend flowers. Perhaps your pal is just having a bad day or going through a tough situation like divorce. Maybe you just want to say thank you, apologize, or celebrate their achievement.

Nonetheless, you want to ensure that:

  • The flowers communicate the intended and appropriate message
  • You properly time your gift
  • Do some research to determine what they’d probably love the most?

4. A Grieving Person 

Again, flowers make some of the best sympathy gifts. If a friend or someone you know just lost someone close to them, a bouquet of flowers can be a thoughtful gesture of sympathy. It’s an effective way to console or show a person in grief that they are not alone in their difficult times.

If you’ll be sending flowers to convey your sympathy, you want to consider:

  • Send white flowers only for funerals and memorial services
  • Potted plants such as peace lilies or bonsai trees could also do
  • Write a comforting message: A personal note is also key when conveying your condolences

5. A Sick Person 

If someone dear to you is sick or admitted to the hospital, there’s no better way to wish them a quick recovery and cheer them up than sending or bringing them a bouquet of flowers when you visit. Since flowers elevate mood and promote happiness, those blooms could go a long way in helping them get out of that hospital bed.

You could even use them to express love on Valentine’s Day to a stranger or someone you’ve lost touch with. But it’s always proper to:

  • Have the flowers accompanied by a get-well-quick card with a personal and motivating message
  • Make it about them, not yourself
  • Avoid mentioning the illness
  • Find out if they have any allergies to flowers beforehand

6. A New Parent

When your friend becomes a new parent, you might feel unsure about what to do. You want to be helpful, but you do not want to be intrusive. Does it make sense to send them flowers? Of course, it does, and it is definitely appropriate.

Parents who receive flowers from friends and family after giving birth are happier, and they experience less stress and anxiety. Flowers are also a great way for other people in the family like siblings or grandparents to celebrate the baby’s arrival.

Nonetheless, it pays to consider which flowers they would love and whether there are any allergy concerns. For obvious reasons, make sure to send the blooms only after you receive the news that the newborn has arrived, safe and healthy!


Yes, flowers are a great gift in many scenarios. They can communicate love, appreciation, care, sympathy, gratitude, best wishes, and a diverse range of other messages.

But the intended message is best passed across if proper etiquette is observed! The rule of the thumb is to have various considerations in mind, including why you’re sending the flowers, flower symbolism, the recipient, and the best time to send the gift.