Placing flowers at the graveside is one of the most common ways to honor a lost loved one. Flowers have spoken our love for centuries, and they remain a timeless sign of devotion. It is no wonder then why so many people want to take extra care in choosing the right flowers for headstones to place in remembrance.
What Type of Flowers are Most Appropriate to Place at Headstones?
The choice of headstone flowers used to adorn a grave is a completely personal choice. Many people choose flowers for the message they convey. Some choose headstone flowers for the way they reflect the loved one's personality. There’s no “wrong” answer about the graveside flower choice you make.
Every type of flower, or color of flower, has a traditional meaning connected to it. While it is perfectly acceptable to choose flowers just based only on personal preference, it can be very meaningful to choose them headstone flower arrangements based on the meaning behind them. These guidelines serve well when considering casket sprays and other funeral flowers as well.
Some common flowers for headstones and their meanings include:
- Carnations express love, fascination and distinction
- Lilies symbolize chastity and virtue
- Roses in different colors reflect different meanings.
White represents humility and innocence, red represents love, and yellow represents friendship and joy.
- Daisies and lilies of the valley symbolize innocence
- Gladioli embody sincerity, strength of character and moral integrity.
Do you Use Fresh or Silk Flowers for Headstones?
The decision to use fresh or silk flowers is a personal one, as long as it is within the cemetery's guidelines. Nearly every cemetery will allow fresh flowers and very few disallow silk ones. However, it is still wise to call the cemetery or check their website for their particular policy. Both fresh and silk flowers offer advantages and disadvantages that include:
Fresh Headstone Flowers
- Fresh flowers are biodegradable
- Fresh flowers are fragrant
- Fresh flowers are more appropriate to commemorate a green burial
- Fresh flowers are shorter lasting and come apart sooner
- The elements may affect how long fresh flowers last
Silk Headstone Flowers
- Silk flowers come in a wide range of quality
- Many silk flowers are virtually indistinguishable from fresh flowers when viewing them
- Some silk flowers are specifically made to withstand outdoor usage
- Silk flowers are not biodegradable
- While long lasting, silk flowers do eventually fade
What Types of Silk Headstone Flowers are Available?
A wide range of silk flowers are available on the market today. When choosing flowers for headstones, it is best to consider ones specifically made to withstand outdoor use. These outdoor florals are available at most florists, some retail stores as well as online. Look for these features in long lasting silk flowers for gravestones:
- Many cemetery silk florals are scented to reflect the type of flower
- Cemetery silk flowers may be made with a UV coating to protect from sun damage
- The highest grades of silk outdoor flowers are made to withstand outdoor elements for a year.
- Outdoor silk flowers for headstones differ from silk flowers intended for crafts or indoor use
With any headstone flowers you choose, it is important to remember that they may need to be removed when the grounds are mowed, and this may influence your decision. Some headstones have a vase in which to place flowers, others may need to be placed on the ground. Considering the wide range of silk and fresh flowers available year round, there is virtually no end to the ways you can express your love and remembrance for a lost loved one.