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The Queen has been the longest-reigning monarch in British history. The head of the Royal Family sadly passed away aged 96. As the nation gathers on the streets to mourn and pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth, flowers will be laid. But what was the Queen’s favourite flower? And will it be included in the funeral bouquets? Express.co.uk spoke to a flower expert from Flying Flowers who revealed the meanings behind several of the flowers the monarch chose during her reign.
The Queen’s favourite bloom was thought to be Lily of the Valley, a plant famed for its white bell-shaped flowers and sweet smell.
Lily of the Valley is thought to symbolise motherhood, purity and good luck, and in the language of flowers represents sweetness, tears of the Virgin Mary and humility.
But for the Queen, Lily of the Valley was also hugely sentimental.
For her wedding to Prince Philip in 1947, the monarch carried the flowers in her bouquet of orchids.
Lily of the Valley was also featured in her coronation bouquet.
In terms of the meaning behind Lily of the Valley, Sandra, Sales & Marketing Manager at Flying Flowers commented: “The beauty of these delicate, tiny bell shaped flowers is the wonderful scent they create, they are loved by many for this very reason.
“A fresh, green scent with a slight hint of Jasmine.
“With such popularity, this favourite flower comes many meanings; Lily of the Valley is popular with brides as it symbolises ‘Good luck in Love’.
“Some people believe it wards off evil spirits and others believe fairies use the tiny flowers as water cups.”
Since Lily of the Valley is a spring bulb, the flower only comes in pure white.
And white is most probably the colour of choice for the Queen’s funeral flowers.
If the Royal Family were to choose other white flowers to accompany Lily of the Valley, they might look to the Queen’s Coronation bouquet, as the flowers selected represented the United Kingdom.
Stephanotis from Scotland is a “white jasmine-scented flower”.
Sandra said: “[This flower] translates from Greek to ‘fit for a crown’ and is known to symbolise good fortune.”
Orchids symbolise Wales, as they are a flower that is “known to represent luxury, wealth and strength”.
“The elegant bloom has strong connections to fertility and masculinity in ancient Greece,” the flower expert said.
Carnations from Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man could also feature as they “roughly translate to ‘flower of love.’”
Sandra added: “Carnations flowers are believed to have been picked to feature in the coronation bouquet as their everyday name comes from the Greek word ‘corone’.”
There are, however, other flowers that represent these four parts of Britain.
England’s national flower is the rose. Sandra said: “The timeless rose is one of the most popular types of flower and is often used to symbolise love, affection and beauty.”
For Wales, it’s the daffodil: “Only available during the spring months, this flower is well known to ancient civilisations for its botanical and medicinal value.”
Scotland’s flower is the thistle which “symbolises resilience, it is known to represent bravery and courage”.
Whereas Northern Ireland’s flower is the shamrock which “connotes luck, by carrying the flower it is believed that it can thwart evil spirits and danger”.
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