It is traditional for family and friends to send floral arrangements to a funeral home as a way of honoring the recently deceased. These flowers are usually full of vibrant colors that add emotion and beauty to the service. Once the funeral is concluded, family members often discard these flowers, which may seem a little wasteful. However, there are many useful ways to recycle these flowers into completely new and different floral arrangements.

In Vases

One idea is to create vase arrangements by pulling the greenery and flowers with the longest stems from funeral arrangements and casket sprays. These flowers should be about five inches in length. Use cool water to rinse the entire stem thoroughly in order to remove the foam that is often used in floral arrangements. Using a pair of scissors or florist's knife, slice off about an inch from the bottom of the stems, creating a sharp angle. Next, fill a vase with cool water and arrange the flowers to your liking.

In Baskets

Another idea is to create basket arrangements. Begin by soaking a floral foam block in water, allowing it to become fully saturated. Put the foam in a container, such as a basket lined with cellophane, a ceramic bowl or a terra cotta style pot. The foam should be cut to fit your container. Again, remove the greenery and flowers from your funeral arrangements. After rinsing and cutting them, add them to the foam that you have positioned in the container. To achieve an arrangement that has depth, cut the flowers to varying lengths and ensure that the foam is fully covered by foliage and flowers.

Floating Displays

Another idea is to create a floating decorative display. Begin by completely removing the flower stems. Cut the stems off using a florist's knife or scissors so that only the flower heads remain. Select a low decorative bowl or dish and, after filling it with water, place the flower blooms inside so that they float on the surface. You may also want to place one or more floating candles on the water. Gardenias and daisies are particularly good selections for this type of display, since they are relatively flat and round.

Preserved Flowers

If you want to preserve flowers from a funeral arrangement, a good approach is to dry them. Start by choosing the flowers you would like to preserve. Rinse them thoroughly, again making sure to remove any foam residue. Cut to the desired length. You will next need to hang the flowers in small bunches in a cool, dark location until the flowers are fully dry. Another approach to preserving flowers is to press them between wax paper inside a thick book. Alternatively, you may opt to use a flower press. You can also purchase flower spray that can help to preserve and protect your flowers.  

For more information about funeral flower arrangements, or how to use them after the funeral, you may want to contact a local funeral home, like Walker Funeral Home.