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Types of Flowers for Mourning

Thai funeral image by Adrian Hillman from

While black is often thought of as the traditional color of mourning, different cultures choose different colors to remember those who have passed on. When it comes to flowers and mourning, the color of choice in Western culture is white. Associated with innocence, humility, and reverence, white-based arrangements are always suitable as an adornment at a funeral. Extra flower arrangements are often brought to the gravesite then removed once the mourners have gone. Potted plants are a good choice, as the bereaved family often will take these plants home as a remembrance.

White Cymbidium

White cymbidium orchids are commonly known as boat orchids. The white variety is one of the most popular orchids in the world due to the attractive flowers. Excellent as houseplants, white cymbidium are often found in corsages and arrangements. Hardy in cold temperatures, Cymbidiums are known to flower even in winter. For mourning, the flowers are often placed in an arrangement with pale accent flowers. Due to its hardy nature, this plant can be given as a potted plant, as it will last for years with proper care.

Peace Lilies

Native to tropical regions of south and central America, Spathiphyllum, or peace lilies as they are known, are an attractive flower with large and broad leaves. The potted variety has an abundance of glossy foliage. notes that peace lilies are among the top 10 plants in a recent clean air study, removing benzene, CO2 as well as other toxins from the air. The flower is often used cut and enhanced with pastels and trim and placed in a vase for a funeral or a wake. Extremely aromatic, the smell of peace lilies can be detected immediately upon entering a chapel or home.

Potted White Azalea

A decorative flowering evergreen shrub, the white azalea is best given potted. Purchased from a florist, the plant given as a gift or remembrance will last for years with proper care. Assuming the plant is purchased already potted, proper care requires flowers to be pinched off after they begin to fade. The plant is particularly attractive as a gravesite adornment.

Dendrobium Orchids

With hundreds of species available, the Denbrodium orchid grows like a stalk with several delicate flowers on each stalk. Often presented as a cutting with accent flowers and trim, Denbrodium comes in a variety of colors with white and white with pinks and purples used most often for mourning. Due to its size, Dendrobium is often used in arrangements to be placed on top of a casket.

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