Plants and flowers play important roles on the planet. The more than 300,000 plant species on earth produce most of the oxygen needed by animals and humans. Flowering plants are self-reproductive and produce their own seeds. Humans have embraced flowers as traditional signs of love and peace. Flowers also provide beauty through their colorful displays of nature.
In addition to supplying the earth with oxygen, flowers and plants provide food to sustain animal life. Every living animal from birds to humans consumes the fruits and vegetables produced by plant life. Most food sources come from flowering plants such as strawberries, peaches and apples. Medicines such as aspirin are made from flowering plants. Honeybees feed their hives and produce the sweet honey we enjoy.
The landscape is made more pleasing to the eye when flowers are incorporated. The roots of the flowers help to hold the soil in place and prevent erosion. Trees that bloom with flowers in the spring provide shade and protection, while birds build habitats among the branches. The leaves and dead flowers return to the earth to nourish the soil for more plants, trees and flowers to grow.
Roses are a universal sign of love. When receiving a bouquet of fresh-cut red roses for Valentine’s Day, you know that you are appreciated. You give your mother a bouquet of fresh-cut spring blooms to show her your love and thank her for years of service; the message is clear because of the love that flowers have come to represent. Flowers have become widely accepted as a sign of sympathy in times of loss. A potted Sympathy Peace Lily, such the one offered by ProFlowers, brings comfort and peace to grieving families at a funeral.
Flowers lift the spirits of those who receive them. Get-well flowers brighten up a sick room, and a bouquet can bring joy and hope in times of disappointment. Researchers at Evolutionary Psychology found that flowers induce positive emotions. Both men and women are moved to act more sociably when they receive flowers. The elderly, who may be fraught with fear and disorientation, maintain their memories more effectively when surrounded by flowers. Flowers have both immediate and long-lasting effects on our mood.