How To Pick The Right Funeral Flowers

The passing away of a loved one can be a tough thing to deal with. Finding the words to express feelings of grief and sympathy can be tough during these trying times. However, people have long chosen to use flowers as a way to convey sentiments when words alone fail us.

Flowers for funerals vary across all cultures and religions. We’ve put together some tips on how to appropriately pick funeral flowers, plus the traditions behind them.

History And Tradition of Funeral Flowers

During an excavation of the 'Shendar Caves', (a burial site that dates back to 62,000 BC), the soil samples revealed that flowers were buried with those that had passed. This is the oldest known evidence of funeral flowers. Flowers in general were also a way of expressing respect.

In ancient Greece, wreaths symbolized eternal strength and the continuity of the circle of life, while in the Victorian era, flowers were used to represent life and rebirth.

florist making funeral flowers
funeral flowers on coffin

How To Pick The Right Funeral Flowers

Picking flowers for a funeral can be tricky. Taking a look at the steps below should help you make a choice when it’s time to send flowers for a funeral.

  1. Before arranging a funeral wreath, take into consideration the colour scheme and style you want to use for the day. This will help you set a central theme that serves as the basis for your flower choices.
  2. Next, you should add your personal touch to the wreath by selecting flowers with unique meanings. Along with this, you should also think about what to write on funeral flowers.
  3. There are also other aspects you can consider. What do you want for the casket sprays and inside pieces? Recommendations from friends and family will also come in handy when picking a florist.

Of course, at Direct2Florist, we are sensitive to your needs when it comes to funeral arrangements. We can offer a range of recommendations from local florists, taking the pressure off you, so you can think about more important things.

Popular Types Of Funeral Flowers

Here are a few of the most common flowers you may see at a funeral. Use these as starting points if you are stuck for ideas.


Lillies are commonly selected as flowers for funerals and are a symbol of purity and innocence. They also symbolize the restoration of the departed's innocence in typical Christian tradition.


Carnations are also very prevalent in funeral wreaths. Red carnations are used very frequently, especially throughout the Mediterranean. They convey the respect and admiration we feel for those that have passed.


The chrysanthemum is a symbol of All Saints' Day (November 1). It blooms from October to December, also coinciding with that day. This short flowering time also symbolizes the brevity of life (hence their presence in cemeteries).


At funerals, we often find white, pink, and red roses. White roses represent innocence, whilst pink roses express appreciation and gratitude. On the other hand, red roses express love and respect and are sometimes placed on the coffin. This is common if there was a close relationship with the person that had passed.

selection of funeral flowers
Read more from the How to Send Flowers Online series

By Miles Warner 21 September 2020