Seasonal Wedding Flowers in South Africa
Wedding Flowers by Season – In the cooler climates of Europe and North America, specific flowers bloom in specific seasons. This means that brides must choose wedding flowers based on what is available from local flower markets during the Spring, Summer, Autumn (Fall) and Winter months. Out-of-season flowers must be flown in from elsewhere in the world but the northern hemisphere brides are a little more blessed in terms of flower availability and can easily import fresh exotic blooms to their country with relative ease.
In South Africa, the seasons are not as clearly defined. Our climate enjoys short intervals of Spring and Autumn that lead to glorious months of warm and cooler temperatures. Our country is blessed to enjoy a warmer climate year-round and we are therefore surrounded by many more wedding flowers that are available to South African brides year-round. We are truly living in an incredible country rich not only in its diversity of peoples but of flowers too.
Checkout the Infographic below: 8 of the Most Popular Wedding Flowers and Their Meanings.
Gorgeous selection of Bridal Bouquets | photo courtesy of Marthastewart.com
Types of Wedding Flowers?
Did you know that there are around 400 000 species of flowering plants in the world? Cape Town, specifically is home to 9 000 species of fynbos which is included in the worlds six floral kingdoms. Deciding which flower or combination of blooms that is just right for your wedding day can potentially be a challenging decision. With so much beauty to choose from we are very spoilt for choice as South Africans.
Do not despair! Your Cape Town Florist, Fabulous Flowers has narrowed it down to a concise and timeless list of the very best wedding flowers perfect for your special occasion.
Spring and Summer Wedding Flower Options: September - March (best time to visit South Africa).
- Peony (Paeonia) – fragrant, delicate flowers in a variety of colours, peony signifies bashfulness or shyness. Did you know that South African peonies bloom for just one month in South Africa. This timeless bloom and bridal favourites can be imported. It is your wedding after all and a day that must be remembered as one of the most magical days of your life.
- Roses (Rosa) – there are over 100 species of roses and it there is a significant reason that it is the world’s most popular wedding flower. Roses are often recognised as a symbol of love and they come in every conceivable colour, from white to deep purple with various meanings and associations.
- Lavender (Lavandula) – a bluish-purple flower with a calming fragrance, dried lavender is also popular as wedding confetti. Lavender is a beautiful symbol for a peaceful marriage, it’s soothing scent will add layers of good feeling to your special day.
- Cornflower (Centaurea cyanus) – a very delicate, bright blue flower, cornflower is used by ‘American royal family’ the Kennedys at family weddings. Dried cornflower can by added to your Bridal Bouquet with love by Fabulous Flowers.
- Sweet Pea (Lathyrus odoratus) –aptly named, it’s a little flower with a sweet scent available in a variety of colours. This relatively short-stemmed flower is a perfect addition to bridal bouquets and bridesmaids bouquets. We love them!
- Ranunculus (Ranunculaceae) – also knowns as a Buttercup in some florist circles, these delightful blooms add a gorgeous touch to Bridal Bouquets for Cape Town Brides. These symbolise charm and attractiveness and we’ve noticed that they are a South African favourite.
An example of a Sweet Pea Bridal Bouquet | Photo courtesy of The Natural Wedding Company.
Sassy Wedding Flowers
- Orchid (Orchidaceae) – Orchids are one of the favourite blooms used in bridal bouquets in Cape Town. They symbolise royalty, luxury and beauty and come in various colours, shapes and forms. White and purple are often added to bouquets and to the reception decor.
- Tulip (Tulipa) – there are over 100 exquisite species of this lovely flower, in a variety of colours. To give someone a tulip is to show your undying love! They are poetic and very special flowers can make your bridal bouquet exquisite if paired with the correct combination of flowers.
- Anemone (Windflower) – a pretty poppy-like flower that tends to brighten everyone's day. Anemone's are available in a variety of bold colours, from white to red to purple. If you are looking for a striking bouquet - this flower is perfect!
- Dahlias (Dahlias) – beautiful and bold, and available in a variety of colours, the Dahlia has become very popular because of the beautiful work from Floret Flowers in the USA.
- Hibiscus – a brightly coloured flower which is found in tropical and subtropical regions throughout the world, this is a gorgeous choice for beach weddings and the white hydrangeas make the perfect base for a beautifully styled bridal bouquet. They symbolise delicate beauty, fame and personal glory. They are abundant in the Western Cape!
- Tiger Lily (including Lilium catesbaui, Lilium columbianu & Lilium superbum) – these large, striking flowers become the focal point for warmer bouquets that inspire good feelings of Spring and Summer love.
A beautiful selection of Dahlia’s | Photo courtesy of Floret Flowers
South African Wedding Flowers
- Freesia – fragrant flowers that are dainty in appearance and a favourite of Cape Town brides in particular.
- Amaryllis – large flowers in delicate colours, including white, cream and pale pink. We recommend that these flowers are added to tase decor rather than bridal bouquets. Either way, they make a magnificent addition to your wedding day floral decor.
- Calla or Arum lilies (Zantedeschia) – snow white, yellow or pink flower (called a spathe) with a yellow spadix (finger-like protrusion poking out the centre). They are abundant in the Western Cape and are often included in Bridal Bouquets. The white lilies symbolise purity and innocence.
- Gerbera (Barberton Daisy) – everyone feels happy when they see these flowers. They are uncomplicated, bold and beautiful flowers that come in a variety of colours like yellow, orange, white, pink and red.
Taking care of Freesias | photo courtesy of Martha Stewart
Autumn and Winter Weddings: March - August (a growing trend in the Western Cape).
Sweet Wedding Flowers
- Hyacinth (Hyacinthus orientalis) – fragrant flowers that usually arrive in a purple-blue colour, but also available in white and pink. Their fragrance is out of this world phenomenal. May need to be imported depending on the quantities required.
- Gladiolus (Sword Lily) – tall frilly, pretty flowers in pale pink, orange, peach, lilac and red that are lovely additions for table decor arrangements or reception flowers. We don’t recommend that they are added to Bridal Bouquets. Glads are in abundance in the Southern Hemisphere.
- Snapdragon (Antirrhinum) – these flowers are perfect fillers for bridal bouquets and wedding flowers. They are pretty, delicate flowers which come in a wide variety of colours and bi-colour blends. Snapdragons mean grace and strength.
A delicate blue Hyacinth and Lavender bouquet | Photo courtesy of Martha Stewart
Sassy Wedding Flowers
- Camellia – heralding from the East, these flowers have an oriental floral appearance and are available in a wide variety of colours, including white, yellow, pink and red. Symbolizing the union between two lovers these delicately layered flowers are highly respected in Japan and China.
- Rhododendron – related to the Heather family, these flowers, available in pale purple, red, pink and white are lovely fillers to wedding reception floral design.
- Daffodil (Narcissus) – given the reference to Narcissus, the astoundingly beautiful Greek boy who fell in love with his own reflection, daffodils are particularly good-looking flowers, available in a strong yellow and striking white. Narcissus have a powerful aroma and because of their short stem make a lovely addition to bridal bouquets.
A simple yet striking yellow Daffodil bouquet | photo courtesy of Flower Muse.
South African Wedding Flowers
- Protea – these magnificent flowers have become trendy at Cape Town weddings and overseas celebrations, particularly in the United States and the United Kingdom. Popular species for wedding bouquets and table decor arrangements include the King Protea (Protea cynaroides) and fetching Protea Pink Ice (Protea compacta x susannae). Fynbos filler is often added to these bouquets to create a truly Cape Town Flora Bridal Bouquet.
- Bird-of-Paradise Flower (Strelitzia) – an extravagant tall flower, Strelitzias make for a rather dramatic floral display and we don’t recommend that they be included in bridal bouquets. Depending on your theme, they are ideal for table decor flower arrangements.
- Anthurium (Flamingo Flower) – similar in appearance to the arum or calla lilies, but in vivid pink and orange tones, these flowers provide an exotic feel to bouquets and arrangements if used sparingly and styled carefully.
8 of the Most Popular Wedding Flowers and Their Meanings: Infographic