Flowers for Memorials

Flowers for memorials, known as memorial flowers or funeral flowers, are those blooms that typically are put into sprays to send to the surviving family. It is an expression of sympathy and a tradition. Many flowers have special meanings and typically are in these types of arrangements.


When used as a funeral flower, the rose has different meanings for red, pink, and white. Red conveys respect, courage and love, while white shows innocence, humility and reverence. Pink is an expression of grace, gentility and love. Roses are showy flowers that can be single- or double-petal blooms. Leaves are medium or dark green. The flowers will vary depending on cultivar type, but hybrid tea roses typically are used in funeral arrangements.


The nasturtium, when used as a memorial flower, symbolizes patriotism and sometimes is used in the arrangements for military deceased. The flower has light green, wavy leaves and red, orange or yellow flowers. They can be fragrant and are strong annuals.


When used as a funeral flower, the marjoram symbolizes consolation and comfort. It is an herb, much like basil, that has very fragrant grayish-green leaves. Tubular flowers are small and are white or pink. It blooms in summer seasons.


The gladiolus, when used in funeral flower arrangements, exhibit character, moral integrity and sincerity. Its leaves are strap-like. Tubular flowers are on spikes and can be in varying colors, depending on cultivar, but some include pink, purple, red, white and yellow.


The iris, when it is used for a memorial flower spray, harkens to pagan times when purple irises adorned women's coffins so they could have the goddess Iris take their soul to the heavens. Irises have sword-shaped leaves and unique flowers with three upright petals and three spreading petals. They can be colors other than purple depending on the cultivar.

Keywords: Flowers for memorials, funeral flowers, memorial flowers

About this Author

Tina Samuels has been a full-time freelance writer for more than 10 years, concentrating on health and gardening topics, and a writer for 20 years. She has written for "Arthritis Today," "Alabama Living," and "Mature Years," as well as online content. She has one book, “A Georgia Native Plant Guide,” offered through Mercer University; others are in development.