The History of Gifting Flowers on Father’s Day

Father’s Day, celebrated in many countries around the world, is a special occasion to honour and appreciate fathers and father figures. While the tradition of gifting flowers on Mother’s Day is well-established, the practice of giving flowers to fathers on their special day has a more nuanced history. Let’s delve into the historical background of gifting flowers on Father’s Day, tracing the origins and evolution of this tradition.

Early Origins of Father’s Day

The concept of Father’s Day can be traced back to the early 20th century, when Sonora Smart Dodd, inspired by the newly established Mother’s Day, sought to create a similar day to honour fathers. In 1909, Dodd proposed the idea of Father’s Day in Spokane, Washington, to honour her father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran and single parent who raised six children.

Evolution of Father’s Day Traditions

In the years following Dodd’s initial proposal, Father’s Day gained popularity and recognition across the United States. However, unlike Mother’s Day, which quickly became associated with the tradition of gifting flowers, Father’s Day initially focused more on activities such as wearing a rose to honour living fathers or a white carnation to honour deceased fathers.

Emergence of Floral Gifts for Fathers

While the tradition of gifting flowers on Father’s Day may not have been as prevalent in its early years, the practice gradually gained traction over time. As societal attitudes towards gender roles evolved and expressions of affection towards fathers became more commonplace, the idea of giving flowers as a symbol of love and appreciation on Father’s Day began to take root.

Cultural Influences and Commercialization

The commercialization of holidays, including Father’s Day, also played a role in popularizing the tradition of gifting flowers. Florists and retailers seized the opportunity to promote floral arrangements and bouquets as thoughtful gifts for fathers, contributing to the growth of the floral industry surrounding Father’s Day.

Modern-Day Tradition

Today, the tradition of gifting flowers on Father’s Day is firmly established in many parts of the world. While it may not be as widespread or deeply ingrained as the tradition of giving flowers on Mother’s Day, the practice continues to evolve and adapt to changing cultural norms and preferences.

Symbolism of Father’s Day Flowers

The choice of flowers for Father’s Day often reflects sentiments of love, respect, and appreciation for fathers and father figures. Common flowers associated with Father’s Day include roses, lilies, carnations, and sunflowers, each carrying its own symbolism and significance.

– Roses: Red roses symbolize love and admiration, making them a popular choice for expressing heartfelt emotions towards fathers.

– Lilies: Lilies represent purity and devotion, conveying a sense of reverence and honor for fathers.

– Carnations: White carnations are often associated with Father’s Day, symbolizing love, respect, and remembrance.

The tradition of gifting flowers on Father’s Day has evolved over time, reflecting changes in societal norms, cultural influences, and commercialization. While the practice may not have originated with the same level of prominence as Mother’s Day, it has gradually become a meaningful way to express love and appreciation for fathers and father figures. As Father’s Day continues to be celebrated worldwide, the tradition of giving flowers will likely remain a cherished custom for generations to come, honouring the important role that fathers play in our lives.