Rusia

Flowers, Cultural Expression

Flowers are part of Russian culture and their level of appreciation surpasses that of many countries in the world. Russia’s love for flowers is accompanied by a refined taste and preference, therefore 90% of their flowers are imported to ensure a superior quality. The most favored flower of the country is thought to be the rose with a large head size. Most of these roses are imported from Ecuador followed by Colombia.

The cultural importance of flowers in Russia can partly be explained by geography and weather. Russia’s colder climates may be the reason that households appreciate a fresh, colorful and beautiful flower arrangement to lighten the surrounding and bring a little bit of happiness as well as nature and life to a site’s decor.

Nonetheless, flowers and flower gift giving are a tradition that dates back long ago in Russia’s history. This tradition is relevant any day of the year so, a special occasion is not needed for one to give or receive a stunning bouquet or flower arrangement. The gesture can be spontaneous, natural, and part of everyday life. Thus, it is evident that the demand for flowers in the country is always high or at least higher than in other places. Naturally, it does fluctuate and rise for key dates such as Valentine’s day as is the case for many other countries. However, it is important to keep in mind that New Year’s is more of a popular date to offer flowers than Christmas. This is only surpassed by International Women’s day which falls annually on March 8th. During this time of the year the flower market is at boom and demand at its peak with citizens wanting to show their love and appreciation through flower and gifts to the important women in their lives.

Apart from tradition and culture flower giving is so prominent because of its level of symbolism. This in turn has implications that must be carefully taken into consideration. For instance, if an arrangement has only roses or the same flower then they can only be given in odd numbers. This is because even numbers are representative of funerals or a gesture of sympathy. Therefore, only odd numbers should be given unless otherwise intended. The occasion to give roses might present itself quite often because as mentioned before, the rose is the most favored flower in Russia. When it comes to symbolism color is quite significant. Red is one of the most traditional options and is great for expressing romanticism. So, if a more settle message wants to be implicitly delivered to a romantic prospect, yellow, white, pink or flowers of softer colors are a more suitable alternative. Nonetheless, yellow flowers may be interpreted as a bad omen, so these are often avoided when given to a possible romantic partner.

Flower arrangements should always be elegant, and plastic should be avoided. The freshness of the flowers given also says a lot about the level of care and love with which they were offered hence fresher flowers are a must. These are just a small example of the symbolic language that a foreigner might not be as familiar with when it comes to Russia and the flower giving tradition; there is a lot to be considered and a lot of thought should be put into these types of gifts but in the end that is what makes it so special, unique and meaningful.