Grief Recovery Specialist, Writer + Blogger

Best Flowers That Are Popular For Grief Symbolism

flowers bouquet in blog about best flowers grief symbolism by erin moore, centered one

Grief and loss are universal experiences. Every human goes through them, in a plethora of great and small ways. Flowers are popular when it comes to grief, both symbolically and literally. You may be wondering what the best flowers for grief support are, the type of flowers to consider, or what the symbolism means. Keep reading to better understand grief, what to do about it, and how flowers may be an unexpected healing balm for you and your family members or those having a difficult time with grief. Funeral flowers are popular, and for good reason.

Grief Is Normal

One definition of grief is the natural reaction to change or loss of any kind. It’s also what occurs when there is a shift in a pattern of familiar behavior. Think about how often this happens in life! We are not taught to normalize it for ourselves and others. Grief still remains somewhat of a taboo subject. No wonder we may feel stuck, isolated, or broken. Give yourself a big hug for persevering through this journey.

Grief encompasses much more than death. While there are of course many different scenarios, there is some overlap in the experience of loss of a loved one, breakups, job loss, pet loss, and financial and medical changes. The person or situation may have been toxic for you, or it could have been wonderful, or a combination. We are complicated, and so are our relationships. The grief is there, regardless.

Our emotions are certainly not linear, and we may cycle through all or some of the “classic” stages of grief at different times and in a different order. These may include denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance, none of the above, or others. 

How To Best Move Through Grief

Life’s transitions and heartbreaks can build up if not dealt with. The core is that grief is highly emotional. Your emotions are asking to be felt and released. Feeling them is what allows them to eventually lighten up and fade away. It’s also usually what prevents overreactions, prolonged distress, and taking it out on others. 

It can be helpful to journal or exercise when feeling grief. Both of these activities will support the emotional flow and release of pent-up stress. Remember that grief can come out in a multitude of ways, including sadness, crying, anger, rage, anxiety, hopelessness, confusion, numbness, and paralysis. Have compassion for yourself through all feelings. Emoting is part of being in a human body, and is always valid. 

Flowers And Their Grief Symbolism

People, perhaps most often of the female variety, tend to adore flowers. They are beautiful, unique, and visually stunning. But flowers also have a special scent, energy, and symbolism. This may be why floral arrangements are popular as gifts and decor at a memorial service, funeral service, funeral home, and for people experiencing grief. 

Funeral and bereavement flowers are thought to date back thousands of years to the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans. The original or traditional way they were used was quite practical actually. Flowers helped mask any unpleasant odor associated with death. They also symbolized a sense of final peace, respect, and dignity to those who had passed. 

When we’re in grief, we seek solace and healing. What has been torn away is that sense of comfort and trust in the continuity of life. Anything that offers this back in even a tiny way is particularly appreciated during these times. The transcendent nature of flowers is a prime example. 

It can be hard to find the right words to express condolences to a grieving family or individual. A sympathy bouquet or sympathy arrangement of flowers may be an excellent choice to convey what words cannot. There are actually different meanings and symbolism for each type of flower as well.

Best Condolence Flowers

Some of the specific flowers that symbolize or convey empathy during grief are as follows. These are the best sympathy flowers you can gift a grieving person. Consider their special meaning, and add a sympathy card or express love in another way as well.

  • White roses, white lilies, white carnations, white chrysanthemums, and other white flowers: symbolize innocence, purity, and peace
  • Red roses, red carnations, and red tulips: symbolize love, devotion, and strength  
  • Pink roses and pink carnations: symbolize gentleness, sympathy, and beauty 
  • Yellow roses and yellow tulips: symbolize warmth, hope, and friendship
  • Blue flowers, or flowers with other vibrant colors: symbolize sadness, inspiration, and admiration

Recover From Grief With Support

In my experience, being witnessed and guided through intense life transitions prevents us from getting stuck there. There is no shame, and in fact great power, in asking for help. Sometimes we simply need an objective or trained person to support us through loss and challenges. My grief recovery program, which I offer through 7 individual one on one sessions, or a group format of 8 meetings (online or in person), gives you the ability to finally say goodbye to the pain, as well as any unmet hopes, dreams, or expectations.

It works for any loss or life change, including death, divorce, romantic and friend breakups, pet loss, helping children grieve, moving, empty nest, medical diagnoses, and relationships with people who are still alive but it’s complicated or painful. People say you have to let go and move on when your heart breaks, but they don’t tell you how. Let me show you HOW. Reach out with any questions – and a complimentary flower! – at Or, please post a comment below.

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Photo by Niklas Ohlrogge on Unsplash

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