Flowers have always played a special role in making traditions and celebrations more beautiful. An excellent example of this are the flowers used during Dia de Los Muertos (Day of the Dead), which happens on November 1 every year. Nowadays, most of these blooms have been adapted and used in sympathy floral arrangements.
In Mexican tradition, marigolds are extensively used to honor the dearly departed, especially on Day of the Dead celebrations. The golden blooms are made into fiery floral arches, bouquets, garlands, crosses and laid on graves and altars, locally known as ofrendas. They are also turned into flower crowns and worn on Dia de Los Muertos parades by women with faces painted as sugar skulls.
In Nahuatl, the ancient language of the Aztecs, marigold goes by the name Cempazuchitl or zempoalxochitl, which means twenty flowers.
White flowers are known to represent peace, calmness, beauty, and sympathy. According to Mexican Folk Art Guide, white chrysanthemums, in particular, are part of their Spaniard heritage, where it was used in observance of All Soul’s Day.
Another common bloom used in sympathy floral arrangements are gladiolas. These long-stalk flowers are usually seen adorning ofrendas on Day of the Dead.