“Where flowers bloom, so does hope.” –Lady Bird Johnson

The miracle of blooming flowers lifts the human spirit. We often give them to express love, gratitude or sympathy. Flowers help us see the beauty in life and the hope in living it.

Contact with flowers and plants also seems to reduce stress, which may be one reason why White House gardeners plant 3,500 tulip bulbs in the Rose Garden each fall for the springtime enjoyment of the first family and their guests. A number of scientific studies suggest that aroma therapy can reduce sympathetic nervous activity by 30-40 percent.

Buds over bottles

Dr. Leonard Perry, extension professor at the University of Vermont, recommends turning to “buds, not bottles” when feeling stressed. University research has linked flowers to happiness, compassion and tranquility. Flowers and plants also seem to provide emotional and behavioral benefits in addition to their aesthetic and environmental benefits.

Flowers also promote innovation, according to a study at Texas A&M. The lead researcher, Dr. Robert Ulrich, reported that participants generated more ideas and creative solutions while in the presence of flowers and plants.

Have you heard that romantic story about the young husband who filled their home with flowers during his wife’s difficult pregnancy? When she was unable to go out and enjoy the beauty of nature, he brought it to her by placing huge bouquets of fragrant roses in every room of their house.

Extravagant? Yes. Expensive? No doubt. But how can one calculate the benefits of feeling so cherished?

Flowers make us smile. And that is something we all need. Whether we grow flowers, buy them, or send them across the miles, we experience that feeling of sharing hope through the miracle of living beauty.