Flowers on Soap Operas: What's the Meaning Behind Them?

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Susan Lucci (ex Erica Kane, All My Children) (c) TVLandSoap operas are full of drama, which is the main reason why viewers follow these storylines for decades. Between love, heartbreak and making up, there seems to be one theme in common in these favorite television shows: flowers.

Whether the flowers are used for special holidays, romancing or loss, there is always a vast array of them in soap operas.

Puruse some of the most common flowers featured on soap operas as well as the meaning behind them. Next time you see them on your favorite soaps, you can then understand their true meaning...

...intentional or not.


Carnations are often used in arrangements in conjunction with other flowers, but they hold great symbolic meaning when used by themselves. knows that there are a variety of different colors of carnations that each hold significant meanings. Pay close attention which colors people give out on the soaps next time you watch. Pink and red seem to be the most common colors, and they symbolize love. White is perhaps even more interesting where soap operas are concerned: solid white flowers symbolize love, whereas striped versions mean that a person regrets that their love can't be shared with the receiver.


Every woman loves roses, as they are often viewed as one of the ultimate symbols of love. Due to this fact, there is an abundance of roses featured on soap operas. The use of these flowers in courting stems from the ancient Greek and Roman eras, and they were also given as gestures of beauty. More importantly, roses are often secretive—next time you notice someone having an affair on your favorite soap opera, see if the courter frequently hands his lover red roses.


While many flowers are symbolic of love and romance, others can hold other meanings. Lilies are often a part of beautiful floral arrangements, including those used at funerals. This is because the flowers symbolize both innocence and sympathy. If someone dies on a soap opera, you will likely notice the family of the departed being showered with arrangements that have lilies. Oftentimes, these are also combined with roses and carnations to show love for the lost loved one.


Cyclamen are the infamous good-bye flowers. In real life, you may notice friends getting these flowers when they retire or if they move away. In soap operas, these flowers are often used as dramatic gestures during some of the most heart-wrenching scenes. Think about scenes you have seen two lovers who simply cannot be together despite their strong feelings for each other. The delicate cyclamen flowers with their uniquely-shaped petals and patterned leaves can make a stronger and more appropriate statement in such situations compared with the rose. Carnations are often intertwined with cyclamen to show pure love and regret over the departure. Next time you see cyclamen in a soap opera, this is likely foreshadowing someone's departure, even if you don't quite know it yet.