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Meaning of Roses: What the Number of Roses Means

Count Your Roses to Decode Your Valentine's Hidden Message

As old superstitions fade and Emily Post-like etiquette evolves, you're probably not counting the number of roses or orchids or hydrangeas you receive on Valentine's Day. But the number of roses a man once gave a woman held hidden meanings, so check out what your valentine either intentionally or, more likely, unintentionally told you.

  • One rose: Love at first sight, or years later "you are still the one."
  • Two roses: Mutual love and affection . . . so you may owe him two roses!
  • Three roses: The traditional three-month anniversary gift also simply means "I love you."
  • Six roses: Infatuation, or "I want to be yours."
  • Nine roses: A big jump up from six, nine roses symbolizes eternal love or "I want to be with you forever."
  • 10 roses: A perfect 10 means "You are perfection."
  • 12 roses: A dozen is like picking the best heart from a Sweetheart candy box; it means "be mine."
  • 13 roses: Thirteen may be a baker's dozen, but not so in love. Its meaning is actually disputed: Teleflora says it means you'll be friends forever, but several other sources, like Love Letter Box, say it means you have a secret admirer.
  • 15 roses: Does he have a reason to apologize? Because 15 roses means "I'm sorry." If not, take it as credit for future remorse.
  • 20 roses: The red starts to get excessive around 20, and supposedly that means "Believe me, I am sincere toward you." Usually, sincerity does not need to be proved with quantity, but that's just me!
  • 21 roses: "I am dedicated to you" is the hidden meaning behind 21 roses. I am going to bet this was once popular among cheaters looking to be taken back.
  • 24 roses: If one dozen says "be mine," two dozen says "I'm yours." Be careful; he could be yours whether you want it or not.
  • 25 roses: Are you pregnant? Did you just get a promotion? Have you not killed the fish he gave you for Christmas? Because 25 roses simply means "congratulations."
  • 36 roses: Three dozen not only says "big spender," but it also says "I'm head over heels in love" or "I will remember our romantic moments."
  • 40 roses: Forty roses says what 10, 20, or 30 can't: "My love for you is genuine."
  • 50-plus roses: Fifty and beyond can mean a few things, and they're all big and boisterous. Traditionally, they mean my love, like my wallet, knows no bounds.
Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Macy Williams
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Join The Conversation
nikkisoda nikkisoda 4 years
I received 36 roses. @snarkypants I'm pretty sure they were not "oh shit" flowers. My weekend prior was pretty sucky and he was trying to make me feel special. Which he did. =)
bethinabox bethinabox 4 years
Haha, snarkypants, so true!! I wouldn't want a huge bouquet of roses like that, it'd make me nervous... just a couple is fine by me. Or be creative and get something BESIDES roses. :P I was given a couple lilies once as a "sorry I had to cancel our date"... they were lovely. :)
snarkypants snarkypants 4 years
pretty sure anything more than 20 is "i screwed up and don't want to tell her"
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