Why Do We Send Flowers For Mother's Day? There's A Sweet Reason Behind It

by Casey Suglia

Mother's Day is going to be here before we know it and I am already struggling to find my mother the perfect gift. While I know there are some things that she'll really enjoy, I also know that I will lose track of time and order flowers to her home on the day before Mother's Day. Which isn't a bad thing, flowers are a lovely gift to receive. But whether you're on the giving or receiving end of a lovely bouquet this Mother's Day, it sort of makes you wonder — why do we send flowers for Mother's Day?

According to the National Retail Federation, Americans spent an average of $172.63 on their moms in 2015 and that makes sense — nice bouquets plus their delivery fees are pricey. The NRF also claims that over 67 percent or more than two-thirds of Mother's Day shoppers, buy flowers for their moms spending over $2.4 billion on flower arrangements for Mother's Day. That is huge — and also proves that you are not alone in sending your mom a less personalized, but still just as lovely gift like a bouquet.

But, in order to understand why we spend so much and send so many flowers, we must look at the history of Mother's Day as a holiday.

According to National Geographic, the holiday was first started in 1905 after the death of West Virginia native, Anna Reeves Jarvis. Anna Reeves Jarvis was a woman's organizer who fought for sanitary conditions and lowering the infant mortality rate in the 1850s. In remembrance of her mother and all that she fought for, her daughter Anna Jarvis, began holding Mother's Day observances in 1908 so that people could dedicate a day to remember their own mothers. The holiday officially became an observed holiday in 1914 thanks to president Woodrow Wilson.

Because it is held on the second Sunday in May, some believe that the giving of flowers on Mother's Day is simply a sign of the season, a gift that is seasonal and fits right in with the spring. But flowers are also a sign of life and fertility — just like the gifts our own mothers gave us. Not to mention, they're beautiful and smell nice, just like my own mom (and probably yours, too).

When picking the perfect bouquet of flowers for your mom, keep in mind that different flowers have different meanings — not that your mom will read too much into whether you buy her white roses or red roses.


Typically, carnations are the most traditional Mother's Day flower, with pink carnations representing gratitude and red carnations representing admiration. Roses are always a great way to tell someone you love them or flowers like sunflowers or tulips are a super fun alternative to the traditional Mother's Day selections.

No matter the pick of flower or the date and time you realized you didn't have a Mother's Day gift, flowers are a perfect and simple way to tell your mom how much you love and appreciate her.