Anniversaries are special milestones in a marriage that are worth celebrating. As wedding milestones sail by, what it takes to remain married changes. Because of this, each wedding anniversary is associated with a different flower with a unique meaning. Discover every flower for each wedding anniversary by year and their associated meaning now.
First Anniversary: Carnations
The carnation is the traditional flower given to a partner for a first anniversary. While any color can be given, pink or light red flowers add more meaning.
Carnations themselves represent fascination, devotion, and commitment. The colors pink and light red are associated with admiration. These exciting concepts are well-suited for marking the first anniversary of a fresh relationship.
Second Anniversary: Cosmos
Cosmos represent fortification and joyfulness. These flowers look fragile, but they are extremely easy to grow, and they also grow quickly. This perfectly correlates to a second wedding anniversary.
While the newness of a marriage isn’t completely worn off by the second year, the excitement has become routine. Things are still new and vibrant, but real emotional growth in a unified way has started to take root.
Third Anniversary: Sunflowers
Sunflowers bloom in the summer and are brightly colored, which makes them a symbol of happiness and warmth. Their strong stems and tall stature also make them an emblem of endurance. Since a third anniversary proves that a relationship is happy enough that it’s enduring, sunflowers are a perfect flower for the occasion.
Fourth Anniversary: Geraniums
Geraniums make a great fourth-anniversary gift because they stand for comfort and friendship. By the fourth year of marriage, the relationship has become routine. Not only has romance been reaffirmed by commitment, but a deep friendship that only comes with time spent together has developed.
Fifth Anniversary: Daisies
Daisies are adaptable and simple, making them a great symbol for a fifth wedding anniversary. By the time a couple has spent half a decade together, they’ve been through many challenges and have had to adapt to different circumstances. Despite this, the simple fact is that the marriage has survived because the couple is in it for the long haul.
Sixth Anniversary: Calla Lilies
Calla lilies are associated with sixth wedding anniversaries because they represent faithfulness, purity, and divinity. These associations are deeply rooted in Christian religious traditions such as Easter. Churches often use the calla lily during Easter since they bloom right around Easter Sunday.
By the sixth marriage, a couple has sussed out that they will probably be together until death steals someone away. They’re convinced this is their soulmate, and their bond is becoming so intrinsically a part of their identity that it seems otherworldly.
Seventh Anniversary: Freesias
Freesias are scented flowers that are delicate and hard to grow. Despite this, they are an extremely popular gift on a couple’s seventh wedding anniversary. They symbolize innocence and trust.
Since freesias are so fragile, it’s appropriate that they work as a good symbolic gesture on the anniversary that marks the time of the fabled seven-year itch in relationships. Many couples by this point have grown bored with each other, but solid relationships built on fidelity and trust manage to make it to this milestone. The marriage has survived despite how easy it is for them to fall apart.
Eighth Anniversary: Clematises
Traditionally, an eighth wedding anniversary is celebrated with the clematis. Clematises have been a popular cultivar for years, and they held a special meaning to Victorians in the nineteenth century.
During the Victorian Era, clematises were seen as a symbol of cleverness and ingenuity since these vined flowers could climb any terrain. This applies to a relationship nearing the decennary since most couples have navigated complicated problems together by this point. It takes a certain amount of ingenuity to keep a long-term marriage fresh, and it takes a bit of cleverness to overcome obstacles to keep both parties happy.
Ninth Anniversary: Poppies
A ninth wedding anniversary means a marriage is shy of a decade old! Poppies symbolize success and love when applied to marriages. Since wild poppies grow at the height of summer, they bring a flourishing warmth to the table when used as a gift.
While poppies are popularly used to symbolize death in America, they also represent love and success in other cultures. This is the meaning correlated with these flowers as an anniversary gift. To avoid a death connotation, avoid red poppies.
Tenth Anniversary: Daffodils
A tenth anniversary is a big deal, so a vibrant summer flower like daffodils is the perfect choice. To Victorians, the daffodil represented admiration. Their yearly appearance in the spring without replanting also makes them a symbol of endurance.
Make sure not to give your partner a solitary flower, which can be bad luck. It takes a supportive community, or at least the pairing of two people, for a relationship to make it a decade. A single flower doesn’t represent the coupling that many daffodils do naturally, so it’s best not to symbolize being single when trying to celebrate togetherness.
Eleventh Anniversary: Morning Glories
The morning glory is a gift when celebrating an eleventh wedding anniversary. That’s because they represent everlasting love.
Morning glories are hard to keep contained. They spread easily and quickly, and they’ll take over gardening spaces without effort. Because of this, they make a great symbol of long-lasting love that won’t be destroyed easily.
Twelfth Anniversary: Peonies
Peonies symbolize honor, wealth, and romance. Their blooms are full-bodied and fluffy, filling up the space they occupy with gusto. Their boldness and abundance when they bloom in the spring emphasize the pride and honor couples feel at having a successful union for 12 years.
Thirteenth Anniversary: Chrysanthemums
Chrysanthemums represent longevity and rebirth since they rebloom for a handful of years and are some of the last flowers to disappear before frost sets in. Many iterations of the relationship have existed by the thirteenth year of a marriage. Despite this, the wedding vows have stood the test of time and are celebrated even when dark times have been on the horizon.
Fourteenth Anniversary: Dahlias
Dahlias represent determination and beauty. These flowers are robust and colorful and tend to bloom after most other flowers have wrapped up their displays for the year. Couples celebrating their fourteenth year together also bloom together longer than many people.
Fifteenth Anniversary: Roses
Roses are a common flower given as a symbol of love, and their use at a milestone anniversary, like the fifteenth year of marriage, is a great choice. The rose symbolizes passion and love, and just like when things were fresh during dating, fifteen years of marriage only happens when two people love each other deeply and passionately.
Twentieth Anniversary: Asters
A twentieth anniversary is a huge deal; asters are the chosen flower to celebrate. They symbolize faith and wisdom as they used to adorn shrines to gods in Ancient Greece. The aster is associated with the Roman goddess Venus, the goddess of love.
Making a marriage work for twenty years deserves a celebration as big as those used to venerate the gods. In European Christian traditions, asters were used to honor the wisdom and divinity of Michael the archangel. They are a special flower used in big celebrations of larger-than-life characters.
This aligns well with the grandiosity of achievement that is reaching a twentieth wedding anniversary. Asters come in various colors, and an entire flower bouquet can be crafted with no additional species involved.
Twenty-Fifth Anniversary: Irises
Irises are tall, vibrant, and strong. They are also the chosen flower for twenty-fifth-anniversary celebrations. It takes a vibrancy of character and a special type of strength for a couple to achieve a quarter of a decade together. Such an achievement should make partners stand tall as they’ve done what most people cannot.
Thirtieth Anniversary: Lilies
Lilies are large and commanding, which associates them with pride. They are also a common funerary flower. This means their funerary association with humility is also pulled into their meaning for a thirtieth wedding anniversary.
It may seem contradictory to present your lover with a flower representing pride and humility at once, but this is a perfect combination for a marriage that’s going strong after three decades. It takes pride in yourself and one another to achieve such a lengthy commitment.
This moment also deserves a sense of humility. Many people do not live long enough to reach a thirtieth wedding anniversary, and many more people lose their marriage to conflict well before this milestone is achieved.
Thirty-Fifth Anniversary: Coral Roses
Before people understood the damage to coral reefs, a thirty-fifth wedding anniversary was celebrated with a chunk of real coral. Now that society has wisened to the destructiveness of real coral used as ornamentation, the color coral has been associated with this milestone instead.
Since roses are a popular symbol of love, giving coral roses to mark a thirty-fifth wedding anniversary is extra special. The color coral takes its meaning from its aquatic namesake in that it represents success and longevity.
The oldest corals on earth are over 4,000 years old, while some coral reefs have successfully survived over 40,000 years. Since 35 years of married life also takes an extraordinary commitment to survival, roses in this color are perfect for the occasion.
Fortieth Anniversary: Gladioli
The gladiolus is a long and colorful flower that has long been associated with swords. Because of this, they symbolize that a partner’s heart can still be penetrated by love despite the unwavering passage of time. A fortieth wedding anniversary is a time to honor integrity and victory, with the gladiolus doing this best.
Fiftieth Anniversary: Yellow Roses
Yellow is a joyful color, and yellow roses are often associated with friendship when given outside the context of marriage. Within a marriage, celebrating joy and friendship after 50 years together is a perfect way to commemorate such a huge anniversary.
If a couple is honored enough to achieve 50 years together, it’s because they not only love each other, but have built the kind of friendship needed to endure anything. It’s so rare for commitment and devotion to last half of a century without being broken, making this huge milestone a moment of great joy. Roses are the flower of love, so representing this joy and friendship with the classic rose flower is the perfect gift for such a big occasion.
Sixtieth Anniversary: Orchids
It’s an honor to reach sixty years of age, let alone be in a marriage that lasts 60 years. A sixtieth wedding anniversary is represented by orchids, which symbolize luxury and fragility.
A marriage that lasts 60 years is an exceedingly rare experience encapsulated by the fragility of an orchid. The amount of effort that goes into a marriage that lasts so many decades is tantamount to the effort that goes into being educated enough to tend to orchids the way they need.
Summary of Flowers for Each Wedding Anniversary by Year
|Meaning of Flower
|Commitment, Fascination, Devotion
|Warmth, Happiness, Endurance
|Purity, Divinity, Faithfulness
|Romance, Honor, Wealth
|Wisdom, Faith, Grandiosity
|Strength, Vibrancy, Standing Tall
The photo featured at the top of this post is © iStock.com/yogesh_more
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