People place cut flowers, wreaths and plants on graves to memorialise loved ones. Selecting the right memento to leave is important as most cemeteries are not responsible for guaranteeing the overall health and security of potted plants. Furthermore, cemeteries usually have rules for plant placements that you must adhere to or risk having your plant prematurely removed.
Cemeteries sometimes sell certain types of potted plants, such as chrysanthemums and azaleas, for placement at a burial site. Chrysanthemums, or mums, are fall-blooming plants. These flowering plants are available in red, purple, yellow, orange and white. They have dark foliage. Mums are hardy plants that can tolerate cooler temperatures, which make them ideal for outdoor sites. You also can usually find mums in various sized disposable, plastic pots to accommodate cemetery container size regulations.
Azaleas are a woody, shrublike plant that cemeteries offer for temporary display at grave sites. Since cemeteries usually allow live plants to remain on grave sites for a short period of time, such as 10 days, the bloom period of azaleas is ideal. Azaleas produce flowers twice a year, in the spring and fall, which cover the entire plant and last roughly two weeks before dropping off. In the fall, the plant's leaves change colour becoming red, yellow, brown and speckled green. Azaleas do not have thorns or other hazards that can harm cemetery workers charged with plant disposal.
Artificial potted plants are well-suited for grave placement, because they last longer than live plants and as a result cemeteries generally allow them to remain on display for extended time period. Furthermore, they do not require the care or maintenance that live plants need to look their best. In some cases, artificial plants costs less than live plants yet still leave a meaningful mark on your loved one's grave. Place artificial poinsettias in an inexpensive pot on a grave in the winter or imitation hydrangeas in the spring.
- City of Lake Wales: Ordinance 2009-32 Sec. 2-642, Rules for Plants, Shrubs, Flowers, Trees and Grasses
- Lake View Cemetery: Additional Services
- United States Department of Veterans Affairs: Cemeteries--Jacksonville National Cemetery
- Purdue University Cooperative Extension: Chrysanthemums
- Azaleas Society of America: Frequently Asked Questions