NewsUkrainian families reunite as symbols of hope bloom

Ukrainian families reunite as symbols of hope bloom

They returned to Ukraine from Poland. This symbol says it all.
They returned to Ukraine from Poland. This symbol says it all.
Images source: © Getty Images | Global Images Ukraine

6:29 PM EDT, July 5, 2024

Oleksandr Tryfonov from Kyiv welcomed his wife and daughter returning from Poland after two years by buying them red roses. Many Ukrainian women and children who escaped the war are now returning home. Flowers, symbolizing hope and resilience, accompany them on this difficult but beautiful journey.

Oleksandr Tryfonov arrived at the train station in Kyiv to welcome his wife and daughter, who were returning from Poland. On the way, he bought two red roses – a symbol of love and welcome after a two-year separation. “I haven't seen them in two years. Flowers are important to women,” he said.

Since Russia's invasion of Ukraine in 2022, many women and children fled to Poland. Now, as the situation in Ukraine stabilizes, some are returning home.

“Flowers have always been associated with Ukrainian culture, but their significance has only grown since the invasion. They are symbols of resistance and hope,” says Irina Bielobrova, chair of the Ukrainian Florists Association.

Plants are ubiquitous in Ukraine, forming an important part of everyday life. Even during the war, flowers are present in people's lives. Olga Seminyog, a flower seller in Kyiv, says her busiest day is March 8 – International Women's Day. Business has picked up thanks to men called up to the military who send flowers home.

Flowers express more than a thousand words. Ukrainians attach great importance to them

Sunflowers, a symbol of Ukrainian opposition and perseverance, have become the national flower of Ukraine. “Emotions are easily expressed with flowers, and together in a bouquet, they tell a whole story,” says Bielobrova.

Dobropark, a garden and recreational area west of Kyiv, was rebuilt after a Russian attack in 2020. “People come here to feel the strength of life and see that it continues despite everything,” says Olha Lykhvar, the park's landscape designer.

Flowers symbolize not only tradition but also hope and healing. In tough times, they remind us of the beauty and resilience that can be found even in the hardest of moments. They fall when cut or picked, yet they bloom again the following spring. Despite everything.

Life can be bright, full, and rich without flowers – Bielobrova emphasizes strongly.
Related content