Yellow Carnation Flower Meaning & Symbolism

yellow carnation symbolism

Despite being one of the most beautiful flowers on the planet, the yellow carnation represents a wide range of negative feelings. It is a common sign of expressing regret, rejection, and sympathy.

Carnations, also known as the Flower of the Gods, have been growing since ancient times and represent a range of meanings. The majority of symbolic meanings associated with carnations (depending on the color) are associated with purity, affection, and love.

However, the yellow carnation is the family’s black sheep. It is frequently used in sad or remorseful situations.

You give a yellow carnation when you want to offer a heartfelt apology; or, in the past, it was given to bachelors as a sign of rejection.

It was so popular during the Victorian era that it was employed as a hidden sign to express dislike.

However, the yellow carnation, like other flowers, may represent a variety of emotions depending on the situation in which it is gifted. 

What do Yellow Carnations Symbolize?


Dating back to Victorian times in England, yellow carnations were regarded as symbols of rejection.

Yellow carnations are often used after heartbreaks and to delicately indicate disappointment without being too direct or blatant. If you want to signal the end of a love or platonic relationship, yellow carnation flowers are the flower to give.

The color yellow is also recurrently used to portray someone as a coward or a liar. Receiving yellow carnations from a loved one or significant other might indicate that they are considering ending your relationship.

2. Apology

Yellow carnations are also used as a symbol of apology to someone.

In contrast to rejection, yellow carnations can also be offered as an apology or a gesture of remorse to a loved one.

Since ancient times, yellow flowers been associated with friendship and caring for one another. Any yellow flower, including a yellow carnation, can be used to express regret to a close friend and to try to rekindle the connection.

As a result, if you ever need to offer someone a heartfelt apology or a token of caring, a bouquet of yellow carnations could be your choice. Make sure you include a letter with the carnations to let them know what the flowers symbolize.

3. Disappointment and Sorrow

Yellow carnations are a symbol of disappointment in someone.

Despite yellow being the happiest color, for some reason yellow carnations don’t have the happiest message! Passing them to someone means you’re either disappointed in them, or disappointed in yourself. They’re also appropriate to send at times of bereavement.

Because of its signification of ‘disappointment’, it can represents the need to own and embrace your own disappointment in yourself.

If you want to give someone a message through flowers because they have disappointed you in any manner, yellow carnations are a common choice.

Does it Have to mean This?

While our research has founds some oddly negative yellow carnation symbolism, we don’t think it has to mean this.

Generally, yellow is a happy color. If yellow carnations make you happy, then that’s what it signifies.

Yellow is a vibrant hue that is typically regarded as cheerful and welcoming. So, embrace this!

However, when giving someone yellow carnations, it’s a good idea to accompany them with a card explaining the sentiment that you’re sending with the flowers so you don’t give someone the wrong idea.

Other Yellow Flower Meanings

Yellow is also associated with pleasure and optimism. Yellow in a dream represents contentment in everyday life, where problems have little ability to make you feel anxious or unable.

Furthermore, it is associated with enlightenment, creativity, and extroversion in color psychology. Yellow represents pleasure, knowledge, and strength in several eastern traditions.

The color attracts attention immediately, but it may also be harsh if applied excessively. Although it appears warm and bright, it can cause optical fatigue.

Yellow can also boost your metabolism, making you feel more energized.

Other Uses for Yellow Carnations

Yellow carnations, whether in the form of oils, herbs, or tea, are a non-proven home remedy to help you relax. Yellow carnations are said to help ease your nervous system if you’re suffering from inflammation or swelling. Some people rub carnation oil on their stomachs for symptoms like menstruation cramps.

Yellow carnations are also often used as an addition to health tonics and hot beverages for people looking for ways to help their digestive and heart health. It’s said to help with chest congestion when carnation petals are infused in hot water. Again, this is unproven.


This brightly colored flower symbolizes a wide range of emotions and attributes. While yellow usually signifies a sunny disposition and happiness, for some reason yellow carnations came historically to represent negative emotions such as rejection, despair, sorrow, and regret.

The flower serves multiple purposes, from expressing your grief or sorrows in condolence to a loved one’s departure through to a subtle token of apologetic behavior.

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