Gorgeous, gorgeous, hydrangeas. Derived from the Greek words, hydro’s (water) and angos (barrel or jug). A water jug!!!
It has controversial meanings around the globe: in Japan, it was seen as an apology or gratitude. It was once given to a maiden by an emperor, for neglecting her….aaawww
Victorians on the other hand, considered the hydrangea to be a negative plant and sent them to people they felt were braggers or who boasted about their false accomplishments. They also, sent them to chastise poor maidens that they considered frigid and would never find a husband lobl!! Not something you would even think of doing today…thank goodness…:)
The hydrangea also sends mixed messages or a passive aggressive archetype symbolising dual meanings. So, a customer can send hydrangea flower bouquets to an honest, heartfelt, kind person OR a heartless person who doesn’t think about others feelings; They could also send them to someone they think has grace and beauty OR vanity and narcissism; or perhaps to show blissful love OR frigid disinterest! Confused already!
Best to pair hydrangeas with other flowers, so you don’t give out the wrong message to the recipient. An important note to mention is that hydrangea flowers contain minute amounts of cyanide, obviously not enough to knock out a florist!
Their colours vary depending on the amount of acid or alkaline in the soil. Acidic yields blues and lavenders, alkaline yields pinks, reds and magentas, an in between pH level yields purple or bluish pink. They bloom around November and through the Christmas period here in NZ.
I love working with hydrangea flowers and greenery. They are easy to handle, have wonderful texture and not only hold their flower well, they also hold other flowers in place in any bouquet. They look amazing in large urns at weddings and gatherings. If they start looking a little droopy, just pop them in a bucket of boiling water, leave them for an hour and they will perk up again.
Disclaimer: This article is written from my view as a keen gardener and florist for many years. Plant origin and medicinal values are a compact compilation of my research and personal use. Gift presentations and ideas eventuated and are related to NZ lifestyle and celebrations.