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Roses are red: What do the colors of roses represent?


It’s true that roses are red, but these elegant flowers come in a gorgeous array of other colors. We all know that red roses symbolize love, but what do the different colors of roses represent? Read our rose color guide so you can express your emotions and send the right message.

Red roses

Nothing says “I love you” like red roses. Whether you give one or a dozen, the red rose is the universal symbol for romantic love and enduring passion. According to Teleflora, this coveted rose also conveys respect, the creative spirit of love, and true love that is stronger than thorns. If you receive a bouquet of red roses on Valentine’s Day, you can be sure that you are the object of the giver’s deepest adoration.

Beautiful close up of red rose

MORE: 8 popular flowers to give for Valentine’s Day that aren’t roses

Pink roses

Pink roses are beautiful to behold and signify different meanings depending on their hue. The experts at Passion Growers, an environmentally conscious premium rose supplier and provider, give the pink rose highest honors as symbolizing admiration, gentleness, grace, gladness, joy and sweetness. Dark pink roses express gratitude, while pale pink roses are often given for more sympathetic occasions.

Closeup of blooming pink rose

White roses

Often referred to as the bridal rose, white roses are traditionally associated with marriages and new beginnings. They represent humility, purity, innocence, loyalty and truth. These striking but quiet roses are also given as a sign of remembrance and reverence, according to the online flower delivery company ProFlowers. A bouquet of white roses is a special way to tell someone “I’m thinking of you.”


Yellow roses

Yellow is the only traditional rose color that has no romantic meaning behind it. The experts at FTD, the largest flower delivery company in the world, suggest giving yellow roses to your friends. These sunny flowers are a symbol of friendship and caring. Yellow roses convey joy, happiness, warmth and cheer. They are perfect for brightening up a friend’s day.


Lavender roses

Want to tell someone that you’ve taken one look at them and have experienced love at first sight? Hand them a lavender rose. This light purple-hued rose is a great Valentine’s Day flower if you want to reveal adoration or attraction to a potential mate. Passion Growers also recommends lavender roses as a way to offer a daily reminder of your love and eagerness to grow your relationship.


MORE: Valentine’s Day traditions that have been loved and celebrated for centuries

Orange roses

When you look at a bouquet of orange roses, you can’t help but get warm and fuzzy feelings. Orange roses, according to FTD, combine the meaning of red and yellow roses and are ideal for budding romances — especially ones that originated from a friendship. These brilliant flowers indicate enthusiasm, passion, energy and desire. Giving someone orange roses will make you both giddy with excitement about your relationship.


Black roses

Black roses are typically associated with death and mourning, but these unusual roses have more positive meanings as well. According to Rose For Love, an online retailer known for unique handmade roses, black roses can signify death of old habits or old order that leads to change and a hopeful journey into unexplored territory. They can inspire confidence and enthusiasm for what’s to come.

A black and white rose on place alone on the ground on a white background.

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