When a life ends, we remember. We remember the love, the bonds, and the passions of the person who died. A well put-together funeral that honors the life, faith, and relationships of the deceased is the first foothold on the path of healing for survivors.
Funerals that reflect a person’s interests can be powerful. They provide comfort for the family left behind. Funerals help change the focus from the cause of death, to the life that was lived. That remembering is comforting. So how can a family weave their mother or father’s love of gardening into the funeral service?
Be it a love of growing vegetables, flowers, or both, there are hundreds of ways to reflect a person’s passion for gardening in a funeral service. A few ideas follow:
· Get that great picture of your gardener wearing their favorite gardening hat, face streaked with dirt and trowel in hand. Blow it up LARGE and display it during the visitation or memorial.
· Ask friends and family to bring a small potted flower or plant in lei of traditional funeral flower arrangements and have a plant swap … those who attend the funeral can take home a plant to grow in their own garden in remembrance of the gardener.
· Use your gardener’s favorite flowers or an arrangement of vegetables as the casket spray
· If you really want to go big, consider what florists can do for weddings and talk to yours about bringing a garden to the church or funeral home.
· Give a packet of seeds or a pair of garden gloves as a favor to funeral attendees
· Include a garden-themed poem in the funeral service
· Have a memorial tree planted at your local arboretum to honor your loved one.
· Ask your funeral director to help you find funeral products that reflect that love of all things gardening to support the service choices you have made.
The ideas above are just a short list of possibilities. There are many more, you just need to do two things. First, be open. Think about that person you love, talk with the others who loved them. Ask yourself, “how do we showcase that gardening passion in the funeral or memorial service?” Second, ask for help. Tell your funeral director what you want to do. Challenge him to either be creative or help you connect with other professionals in your community who can support your goal. Your funeral director wants you and your family to have the absolute best, most meaningful funeral service. He or she is there to help you, just ask.