Exquisite petals, a trumpet-like shape, and countless colours – about gorgeous lilies. Despite being admired for breathtaking beauty, they also possess a hidden gem – unique symbolism woven into cultures, myths, and traditions throughout the ages. Let’s discover the breathtaking lily flowers and their meanings, uncovering the rich tapestry of emotions these elegant blooms have come to represent. 

Lily flower Meanings and Symbolism

What Does the Name Lily Mean?

Based on the Latin word Lilium, the name Lily carries the same widespread meaning as the lily flower: innocence, virtue, compassion, and the purity of the soul. Such associations are especially fitting for the flower's refined appearance.

The History and Origins of the Lily

Lilies have graced gardens and artistic creations for countless years. Their presence is obvious in myriad ancient cultures, from Greek to Egyptian and Asian. Often linked to deities, these flowers always held sacred symbolism. Over time, their popularity spread across the globe, leading to hybridisation and the emergence of various plant species.

What Do Lilies Mean?

Not just botanical wonders but messengers of sentiments, lilies have several interpretations. The meanings attributed to them highly depend on their colours, offering a silent language for demonstrating feelings that are too difficult to describe with words only.

White Lilies Meaning: Purity and Innocence

White Lilies

Gift Occasion: Weddings

White lilies are a universal emblem of purity. Their pristine appearance mirrors the goodness of the emotions experienced during weddings. Choose these flowers as a gesture of well-wishes and a representation of the couple's pure and genuine love for each other.

Pink Lilies Meaning: Admiration and Gratitude

Pink Lilies

Gift Occasion: Mother's Day

Pink lilies convey admiration, gratitude, and a sense of joy. What better occasion to express these feelings than on Mother's Day? The soft and delicate pink hue mirrors a mother's nurturing and caring nature. Gifting pink lilies on Mother’s Day Is a heartfelt way to show your recognition of all the love and care she provides.

Red Lilies Meaning: Passion and Love

Red Lilies

Gift Occasion: Anniversaries

Red lilies, reminiscent of fiery passion, are the ultimate symbols of love. On anniversaries, these blossoms are ideal for celebrating the intense emotions that have grown over the years. The vibrant red hue speaks volumes, expressing the depth of affection and devotion between partners.

Orange Lilies Meaning: Energy and Enthusiasm

Orange Lilies

Gift Occasion: Job Promotion

Orange lilies, especially the world-famous tiger lilies, radiate energy, enthusiasm, and a zest for life. They are perfect for congratulating someone on a job promotion or achievement. The vibrant colour reflects the excitement of progress and new opportunities, making them a thoughtful gift to mark career milestones.

Yellow Lilies Meaning: Friendship and Joy

Yellow Lilies

Gift Occasion: Friendship Day

Yellow lilies embody joy, positivity, and friendship. These cheerful blooms make a perfect gift for Friendship Day or any occasion when you want to celebrate your friendly bond. Gifting yellow lilies to a friend conveys the message that their presence brings happiness and delight into your life.

Purple Lily Flower Meaning: Royalty and Success

Purple Lilies

Gift Occasion: Graduation

Purple lilies exude a sense of royalty and wealth. This regal hue is a fitting choice for celebrating graduations. Apart from conveying congratulations for academic achievements, purple lilies also represent the start of a prosperous journey ahead. Similarly, the black lily flower speaks of royalty and mystery, ideal for adding a dash of mystery to your present.

Green Lily Flower Meaning: Harmony and Renewal

Green Lilies

Gift Occasion: Housewarming

Green lilies symbolise harmony, growth, and rebirth. When gifting these blooms, consider occasions like housewarmings. The green hue speaks of a fresh start and rejuvenation, wishing a harmonious and rejuvenating life in a new abode. When looking for a lily with a more spiritual meaning, consider the blue lily – the epitome of faith and compassion.

Types of Lilies

Asiatic Lilies

Asiatic Lilies

Asiatic lilies boast vibrant shades and upward-facing blooms. They exude energy and passion and are perfect for infusing a burst of colour into any garden or bouquet.

Candidum Hybrid Lilies

Candidum Hybrid Lilies

Also known as Madonna lilies, these pristine blooms embody elegance and a refined taste. Because of their delicate appearance, they are often chosen for weddings and elegant arrangements.

American Lilies

American Lilies

Native to North America, these lilies showcase bold hues and a captivating fragrance. They're a reminder of the diverse beauty found in nature.

Oriental Lilies

Oriental Lilies

Large and fragrant blooms are the giveaway feature of Oriental lilies, which are all about sensuality and femininity. Their alluring scent adds a layer of complexity to their already stunning appearance.

Trumpet Lilies

Trumpet Lilies

Trumpet lilies, also known as Aurelian lilies, boast trumpet-shaped flowers and a striking presence. They symbolise resurrection and renewal, fitting for their regal appearance.

Longiflorum Lilies

Longiflorum Lilies

These specimens have elegant, elongated flowers, which make them a timeless choice for various occasions.

How to Care for Cut Lilies

To prolong the beauty of freshly cut lilies, follow these simple tips:

  1. Before placing the bouquet in a clean  vase, carefully trim the stems
  2. Clean the vase and fill it with non-chlorinated water
  3. Remove all the leaves that might be submerged in water
  4. Store the bouquet in cool rooms, protected from direct sunlight
  5. Pour new water every few days and trim the stems slightly, as this promotes water absorption
  6. Use lemon juice, sugar, or store-bought solutions to provide nourishment

What Is the Superstition About Lilies?

While lilies are generally regarded as flowers with positive meanings, they have also been connected with superstitions. Gifting lilies to pregnant women is undesirable, as it is considered a gesture of wishing harm to the mother and child in specific cultures. However, these superstitions can be interpreted differently depending on the region.

When Do Lilies Bloom?

Generally, lilies bloom during the summer, from June to August. However, with the broad array of lily species, you can find blooms throughout different seasons, from spring to late summer.

As you can see, lilies are not just flowers. They're expressions of emotions, carriers of history, and symbols with diverse meanings. Whether in gardens, bouquets, or artistic representations, lilies inspire and delight thousands of people across the globe.


What does the lily flower mean in love?

Lilies, particularly white ones, describe the innocence of love, while their elegant stature conveys a sense of refined beauty.

Do lilies have a spiritual meaning?

In Christianity, lilies embody purity and the divine. In Eastern traditions, they symbolise enlightenment and the soul's hidden potential.

What emotion do lilies represent? 

Lilies primarily focus on renewal and transience. Their serene appearance evokes the feeling of tranquillity, while their fleeting blooming period emphasises the fleetingness of life.

Are lilies a romantic flower? 

Yes, lilies do possess a romantic aura. Their graceful form and subtly fragrant blooms make them an enchanting choice for romantic gestures.

What is unique about the lily flower? 

This flower's uniqueness lies in its multifaceted symbolism. It represents a range of concepts, from purity to devotion and even death in some cultures. 

Are lilies good luck? 

Indeed! These flowers are perfect tokens of generous fortune and prosperity, especially in Asia. The association with good luck arises from their elegant appearance and positive connotations.

Why are lilies used at funerals? 

Lilies are used at funerals to wish for the peaceful transition of the departed's soul. They bring a sense of comfort and hope, helping to honour positive memories.

Where should lilies be placed in the house? 

Lilies are best placed in areas that emphasise their qualities, such as spaces dedicated to meditation, reflection, or spiritual practices. Their presence can enhance the ambience of tranquillity and renewal, like a corner for quiet contemplation or a serene bedroom.

What birth month is the lily flower? 

The lily flower is associated with May.

What is the most popular colour of lilies? 

White lilies tend to be the most popular choice. However, lilies come in a spectrum of colours, each carrying its symbolism.