Flowers of Easter
Easter is one of the most important and popular Christian holidays. It is observed to commemorate the resurrection of Jesus Christ, three days after he was tortured to death. Easter falls on the last day of the lent season. Lent is a long period of celebration that starts from Shrove Tuesday; or Mardi Gras, the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday which means ‘Fat Tuesday’ because it is the last day where you can eat everything before Lent and ends with Easter. One of the holiest festivals among Christians, Easter is celebrated across the globe with great fun and fervor. Special Church services are organized across various countries over the entire Easter season. The holy occasion is welcomed with the same feelings, gusto and enthusiasm.
In the Western hemisphere, Easter fun doubles, as it not only commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ from death, but also welcomes spring season, as it is said flowers bring in goodness in the life of a person. Most importantly, Easter symbolize revival of life after death. According to the scriptures, the tomb of Jesus was empty, three days after his crucifixion. Thus, Christians believe that they too can receive new life after death. A festival of joy and happiness, Easter celebrates Christ or the flowers and blossoms that come to life in spring, right after the dead and lifeless winter chills. On Easter, the gardens are filled with colorful, vibrant flowers and buds. While the grass forms a green carpet over the earth’s surface, colorful flowers form the intricate design over it. The flowers fill the entire atmosphere with sweet fragrance, adding charm and charisma to the festivity. Easter is a joyous holiday celebrated in the spring to honor the Resurrection of Christ.
Easter flowers are a central theme to religious celebration but are also part of secular Easter festivities. The expression Easter derives from old English word EASTRE OR Eostre. Easter refers to the Anglo-Saxon goddess of dawn and spring, but under Christian influence, the modern English term Easter took over the present meaning. Hence, the word was borrowed as a sematic loan, which means only the word, but not its original meaning is borrowed. Thus a pagan festival was changed from a celebration of spring to a celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus by the Christian church, which means Jesus now owns the intellectual property rights on Easter. Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the full moon that falls on or after the spring equinox on 21st of March every year. Thus, Easter is celebrated on different dates every year that usually falls between March 22nd and April 25th. This festival denotes life, rejuvenation, reward, rebirth and restoration. Lots of flowers are associated with spring and Easter festivals.
Religious Symbolism some flowers have been given special meanings by Christians to help them celebrate Easter. While the gardens are filled with colorful vibrant flowers and buds generally, the colors of Easter are more pastel and passive than flowers that are used for other occasions. Whether you wish to present traditional flowers that symbolize the death and Resurrection of Christ, or simply want to brighten the holidays, understanding the symbolism and meaning associated with Easter flowers and colors will help you choose appropriate Easter flowers for any event. There are several flowers thought to symbolize the Christian belief of the Resurrection
Palm Fronds and Olive Branches
Palm Sunday marked the start of what is often called ‘Passion Week’ the final seven days of Jesus earthly ministry, Palm Sunday was the ‘beginning of the end’ of Jesus’ work on earth. As Jesus ascended towards Jerusalem a large multitude gathered around him, they understood that Jesus was messiah, so they gave him the royal treatment. The crowd’s action along the road gave rise to the name ‘Palm Sunday’. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road others were cutting branches from palm trees and spread them on the road while some waved the palm branches. On Palm Sunday, palm fronds are symbolic floral items used to commemorate that first ‘Palm Sunday’
Known for its purity and holiness, is one of the traditional flowers for Easter. Easter lilies are often white. It represents purity and goodness and hope and as such represents the Resurrection of Christ. These help Christians to remember that Jesus was pure and perfect when He died on the cross.
It is believed by some, that lilies sprouted in the places, where drops of blood fell down from Jesus. Another legend, the first lilies appeared when Eve shed tears of repentance upon the earth during the crucifixion. Another legend proclaims that when visitors returned to Mary’s tomb after her death, all that was found was a bed of lilies as Mary had been taken directly to heaven. white lilies symbolize chastity and virtue. Much of the decorations for Easter revolve around the lily. Apart from the churches being decked with lilies, the flowers also find a prominent place in homes.
Passion flowers have been given lots of different meaning over the years. It helps Christian to remember Jesus dying on the cross. The three stamens represent the three nail wounds of Jesus or the Trinity of God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit of the three crosses. The circle of petals represent the crown of thorns that Jesus wore or as the flower has ten petals they can represent the disciples that did not deny or betray Christ. The leaves represent the spear that went into the sides of Jesus. The passionflower normally last for three days and represents the three days Jesus spent in the tomb.
All tulips symbolize passion, belief and love, but white and purple tulips have special meaning. White tulips represent forgiveness while purple represents royalty both important aspects of the Christian Easter celebration. Red tulips symbolize the shedding of Jesus blood and unconditional love.
Baby’s Breath; These delicate flowers represent the Holy Spirit.
Daisies: White daisies symbolize the innocence of the Christ child.
Hyacinth: These flowers represent peace of mind
Irises: These flowers symbolize faith, wisdom and hope. The Greek word for rainbow is Iris representing the link between heaven and earth.
Daffodils: The beautiful bright yellow daffodils (Narcissus) also signify great importance on Easter. The flower is symbol of Jesus Resurrection from the dead, that is, a new flower is born from a seemingly dead bulb.
Azalea is another popular flower associated with Easter. It comes in colors of red, pink and even cream blooms. The flower is Chinese symbol of womanhood and symbolizes the thought ‘take care of yourself for me’. Just like lilies and daffodils, azaleas too are considered to be ancient symbol of Christ Resurrection, good tidings and rejuvenation.
Anthuriums: With their open, heart-shaped flowers and tropical disposition, its no wonder that anthuriums have come to symbolize love and charity or hospitality. White symbolizes purity, while pink and red represent passion and unconditional love.
Secular Easter Arrangement and Traditional Easter Flowers
Because Easter is celebrated in the spring it is not uncommon to include a host of spring blooming flowers in a floral arrangement or bouquet to celebrate the holiday.
Daffodils: Sunny daffodils brighten Easter décor. When presented to a friend that can represent unrequited love or friendship. Tulips: For non-religious floral arrangements, brightly colored tulips represent the coming of spring. Red tulips symbolize true love, while yellow colored tulips tell the lady that her eyes are beautiful. Tulips of any color between married couples means ‘Our love is perfect’
Hyacinths: In secular displays, the hyacinth’s meaning depends on its color. Red hyacinth says “Let’s play” while white expresses that you think the recipient is lovely. A purple hyacinth asks for forgiveness.
Bird-of-Paradise: Bearing an unmistakable resemblance to a colorful bird in flight (to heaven), represents joyfulness, (and not surprising) paradise itself.
Single petaled Roses: The five petals of old-fashioned wild roses represent the five wounds of Christ. Red roses represent the shed blood of Christ for forgiveness, while white roses symbolize His purity.
Who Should You Send Easter Flowers To?
Easter flowers are appropriate for mothers and grandmothers or other close relatives, but they can also be sent to your sweetheart to celebrate this special day. They are suitable for groups, such as a church social groups, to co-workers or even to staff of your child’s school or daycare center, hospital wards, old peoples’ homes, are always welcome. If you are invited to Easter dinner or to join in on Easter celebrations, sending or hand carrying flowers is a nice touch. Lots of churches all over the world hold flower festivals and funfairs at Easter, when the whole church is filled with displays of flowers. Some are made into scenes from the Easter story.