7 Perfect Occasions for Gifting Carnations

As one of the most popular cut flowers, it may not come as a surprise that carnations make great gifts and decorations for many different occasions. Whether you’re looking to support someone during a tough time or help them celebrate a big moment, a carnation bouquet may be just the gift you’re looking for.

Perfect Occasions for Gifting Carnations

The Best Occasions to Give Carnations

The following occasions are great times to give someone a single carnation or a whole bouquet.

1) Mother’s Day

Carnations have a long history with Mother’s Day, which is one reason why they’re the perfect gift for your mom, grandma, aunt, or any other motherly figure.

The link between carnations and this matronly holiday started on May 10, 1908. On this day, Anna Jarvis sent over a hundred white carnations to the West Virginia church she grew up in to honor her late mother and all mothers.

Since then, white carnations have been seen as a way to honor deceased mothers, while people have given pink carnations to living mothers.

While white and pink are the traditional colors for Mother’s Day carnations, don’t be afraid to send your mom a bouquet of carnations in her favorite color.

2) Anniversaries


While a carnation’s color impacts its symbolism, carnations can be symbols of love, devotion, and romance. And that means they’re great gifts for anniversaries commemorating your wedding day or first date.

If you want to pick carnations that scream romance, you can’t go wrong with a bouquet of red carnations. These flowers symbolize passionate love and romance, which makes them a great choice for any occasion related to romantic love.

3) Birthdays

Carnations could be the perfect birthday gift if the birthday person likes flowers with an understated rather than in-your-face beauty. We’re not saying carnations aren’t beautiful, we’re just saying their delicate petals cause you to turn to examine them over and over again.

When choosing a color for birthday carnations, it’s always a good idea to choose a hue that fits the birthday person’s favorite color. However, you can also opt for pink carnations, which people link to feelings of respect.

Carnations are especially fitting gifts for those with January birthdays since they’re the birth flower for those born during the first month of the year.

4) Apologies


Let’s face it; we sometimes mess up. And when this happens, it’s best to admit our mistakes and apologize.

If you’d like to send someone flowers to tell them you’re sorry, yellow carnations are a great choice. These cheerful flowers go with feelings of disappointment and regret, which means they are a great way to show someone how you feel.

5) Funerals

When someone passes, we do our best to remember their attributes and support the loved ones left behind. One way to do both is to honor the deceased with funeral flowers.

Pink and yellow carnations are the colors that are best suited for times of loss.

6) Romantic Gestures

Romantic Gestures

Before weddings and anniversaries, there are first dates and many special moments in between. And it’s not uncommon for some of these romantic moments to include flowers!

Whether you’d like to let a friend know you’re romantically interested in them or want to let your new partner know you appreciate them, carnations can be a fitting choice.

Light red carnations let another person know you think they’re great, which means they can be a suitable flower for new relationships. And once you’re a bit deeper into a relationship, you can give red carnations to let someone know you love them.

7) Housewarming

If someone you know moves into a new home, giving them white carnations can be an excellent way to wish them good luck in their fresh start. These beautiful blooms make an excellent floral housewarming gift

Suitable Occasions for Gifting Carnations FAQs: 

What Does It Mean When You Give Someone Carnations?

The meaning of a gift of carnations will depend on the flower’s color. For example, dark red carnations are tied to feelings of romance, light red carnations mean friendship or casual interest, yellow carnations mean regret and white carnations may mean someone is wishing you a new start.

Are Carnations the Official Flower of Mother’s Day?

Due to their historical involvement with Mother’s Day, carnations are the official flower of this holiday. White carnations are for deceased mothers, while pink carnations are the official flower for living mothers.

What Color Carnations Are for Love and Romance?

Deep red carnations are symbols of love and romance.

Wrapping Up

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, anniversary, or new home, there’s a carnation that can make an excellent gift. With rich symbolic meaning and plenty of fragrant carnation varieties to pick from, gifting these beautiful flowers are perfect for a host of occasions throughout the year.

For more, see our in-depth guide to carnation growing zones and native ranges, tips on managing non-flowering carnations, the best companion plants for carnations, the best locations to plant carnations, and how to propagate and transplant carnation flowers in your garden.

Spread the love