The Symbolism of Common Funeral Flowers

By: Matthew Funeral Home
Monday, March 27, 2023

In most families and cultures, floral arrangements go hand-in-hand with funerals. Each type of flower evokes different feelings in people and has a deep meaning associated with them. When you send a floral arrangement to a funeral, you aren’t just sending a mass of colorful petals; you are giving a gift of so much more.


Lilies are the most common flower for funeral arrangements. They symbolize the purity and innocence of the departed soul. The white lily, specifically, evokes majesty and grace. The stargazer lily, on the other hand, is meant for sympathy. 


Roses are flowers with a plethora of colors, each conveying a different meaning. Roses as a whole or even just part of the arrangement create a sense of love and closeness to the departed. If there is a single rose in the arrangement or bouquet, it shows a long-lasting love for the one who has passed.  Red roses symbolize respect, courage, and ultimately love. Darker red or crimson roses display deep sorrow and grief. White roses evoke reverence, innocence, and youth. Yellow roses are meant to be given by friends, as a symbol of their close personal connection.


Carnations are among the most long-lasting flowers in a funeral arrangement, and they are especially fragrant. The three most common colors of carnations are red, white, and pink. Red carnations symbolize deep respect and adoration. White carnations stand for love and purity. The pink breed is meant to evoke fond memories and remembrances. 


Chrysanthemums are historically one of the most important flowers for funeral arrangements. They symbolize truth and are fairly cheerful. In many European countries and cultures, they are somber flowers and are almost exclusively used in funeral arrangements. The white Chrysanthemum is used as a symbol of mourning and grief in some Asian countries. 

For over 50 years, Matthew Funeral Home has been serving the Staten Island community. We can help with almost every aspect of your loved one’s memorial service, including the floral arrangements. Our family is here to serve yours, every step of the way.

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