Why are Flowers the Common Choice to Send for Funerals?

By: David Tindall
Friday, May 27, 2016

Throughout human history, flowers have always had symbolic meanings. Different flowers have different significance for various cultures, but most human civilizations over time have had a special relationship with plants—just think of the way you use mistletoe at Christmas, give bamboo as a gift of luck, or use red roses to represent love.

Over time, flowers have also become associated with the cycle of life and death, which is why they’ve become so popular as gifts and decorations for funerals. And while the different types of flowers do have unique symbolic meanings, they also serve a very practical function as well. 

Funeral Flowers and Symbolism

One of the greatest powers that flowers have is to express a complex multitude of feelings that words simply can't encompass upon the death of a friend or relative. When you send flowers for a funeral, it expresses a number of sentiments, including:

  • Grief, sadness, and loss
  • Sympathy for the bereaved
  • Support for those who are suffering
  • Respect, love, and admiration for the dead

Sending flowers is also a way of showing respect and sympathy when you can't physically be present at a funeral, and the gesture tells the friends and family of the deceased that you're thinking of them and are there in spirit. On top of all these emotions, particular flowers also have special symbolic meanings, so you can choose flowers depending on what you want to say and what the deceased meant to you:

Roses:

Pink roses symbolize grace and admiration; dark pink roses symbolize thankfulness; yellow roses symbolize friendship; white roses symbolize purity; red roses symbolize love and respect.

Carnations:

White carnations represent innocence; red carnations represent affection; pink carnations represent remembrance.

Orchids:

Orchids of all colors symbolize eternal love. Most florists use orchids as living plants, rather than as cut flowers that are part of an arrangement.

Lilies:

White lilies represent innocence and rebirth, as do peace lilies, and white stargazer lilies represent sympathy. 

Chrysanthemums:

White chrysanthemums symbolize death and grief.

The Practical Uses of Funeral Flowers

While flowers are used for funerals to convey deep and genuine emotions, they are also used for a few very practical reasons. Historically, before modern embalming techniques came into widespread use, aromatic flowers and herbs were used at funerals and burial sites to cover the odors emitted by the body of the deceased, making funeral services in the presence of the body possible.

Although funeral flowers are no longer required for this purpose, today they serve to make funeral services warmer and more comforting for the bereaved, and make funeral homes seem more welcoming, more hospitable, and less intimidating.

If you’ve lost a friend, acquaintance, or family member, funeral flowers can help you express your sadness, your sympathy, and your support for others who are grieving.

Whether you can attend the funeral or not, flowers show respect for the deceased and honor the life he or she lived. To begin making funeral arrangements around Syracuse, NY, or to talk about the best flower choices for a funeral, contact Tindall Funeral Home today to discuss your options.

 

 

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