The gardenia flower symbolizes secret love, purity and peace, according to AuntyFlo.com's Flower Dictionary. The gardenia was often used during the Victorian era to express anonymous or hidden love. Gardenias are also used to convey the message that someone looks lovely and are often part of wedding bouquets.
AuntyFlo.com describes the gardenia as ivory, creamy or velvety white in color. It is this white color that associates the gardenia with purity. Some gardenias grow yellow centers; these are the ones used to convey secret love. The gardenia has a strong, sweet scent and resembles the shape of a star when in full bloom.