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guy's guide to buying flowers for women

Buying flowers is definitely a good thing. And buying flowers for the special lady in your life is a great thing. But an easy thing? Not really. There are so many flowers to choose from, and so many colors and arrangements, it's hard to know where to begin. It can be even more confusing if you're buying more than one bouquet – an arrangement for your wife and one for your daughter, your mother or your sister.

A man could ask for her favorite flower, but that would give the surprise away. Or he could just pick out a bouquet himself. Either way, most women will appreciate the gesture. But, for that extra wow factor we offer the following guide to choosing just the right and appropriate floral bouquet for your wife or girlfriend, relatives, friends and colleagues.

Consider your relationship status, her personality and her style, – does she enjoy time-honored traditions or is she more of a fun-loving adventurer who relishes surprises? Is she a romantic that loves traditional roses? Is she Green and loves the earth and nature? Then maybe a plant is a good choice. Is she exotic? Then she may love orchids and other tropical arrangements.

Flowers to buy if you're in a long-term relationship

Nothing says passion like red roses, also known as the lover's rose. They're sexy and alluring, yet classic and elegant. Red roses make a stunning bouquet and reveal an intense, romantic love.

If, however, you’ve given her red roses the last few years and you'd like a variation on that theme, there are several ways to go.

You could stay with roses, but try a new color, such as orange. Or you could stick with the color red and choose another flower. Red tulips are a beautiful and sophisticated choice. The tulip's velvety black center is said to resemble a lover's heart, darkened by the heat of passion.

Another option, of course, is to mix roses or tulips with other flowers, which add new layers of meaning to your bouquet. For example, asters are a love flower, though far less famous than the rose.

Pink alstroemeria conveys devotion and pink stargazer lilies represent prosperity. Also, peonies have a high romance quotient and are considered a sign of good luck and a happy marriage.

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Flowers to buy if you’re not a couple, but you really like her

Purple roses and purple lilacs symbolize love at first sight.

So, assuming you don't want to say that quite yet, your best bet is a mixed bouquet. A few red roses will subtly indicate you'’re interested without overdoing it. Orange roses also signify desire, and a mix of orange, peach and white roses would be exquisite.

Or you could take a pass on convention and pick something more unusual, like Bird of Paradise, which represents joy and (surprise, surprise) paradise. This angular and striking flower would be a great gift to give her for Valentine's or just before the two of you take a beach vacation.

Bird of Paradise is a cool bloom to have in your home, too, so consider buying two.

Similarly, an orchid makes a lovely gift, unexpected and exotic. She'll have no doubt that you think she's special.


Flowers to buy for a female friend or colleague (or a first date)

Just as red means romance, yellow reflects the warmth and fun of enjoying another person's company, laughing at the same jokes, sharing similar interests. Yellow roses or tulips make gorgeous bouquets and send a message of joy and cheerfulness. Sunflowers, too, are a surefire way to make someone's day.

Daisies and freesia are strong symbols of innocence and friendship as well, and will make a unique gift your friend is sure to remember. Many women love the fresh charm of a daisy, and freesia is an especially fragrant flower. Be specific when signing the card: "Thanks for your help on the project" or "You're a terrific friend."

These guidelines also work for a first date. Once you've asked her out and planned where to go, a simple bouquet is a nice gesture. Here, the card could read: "I'm really glad I met you" or "I can’t wait to see you tonight."
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Buying flowers for female relatives

Looking for blooms to brighten Mom's Valentine's Day or just to let her know you're thinking of her? The perfect choice is pink carnations. That's because they are a symbol of maternal love.

Additionally, pink roses express gratitude, appreciation and admiration. Pink blooms anytime of the year will show how much you care. White makes a pretty accent with these arrangements.

While you're at it, grandmothers, sisters, aunts and daughters are bound to appreciate the beauty, delicacy and grace in a bouquet of fresh flowers. Once you get the hang of it, buying flowers isn't hard at all!
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