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Attractive grave planting for autumn and winter

With selected flowers and plants, you can tastefully decorate a grave even in the cold season. Graves don’t have to be drab and gray in winter. When to do the grave planting in the fall depends on the plants that are planted out and the temperatures in late summer. From the end of August there is a large selection of heather, chrysanthemums, pansies and much more suitable for grave planting in autumn.

What types of planting are there?

When planting graves, a distinction is made between permanent and alternating planting.

You can plant graves stylishly and permanently with hardy ground covers, perennials, grasses and small conifers. For permanent planting, choose varieties that suit the location. With this group of plants, a certain part of the grave area is greened all year round. From the second year, the flat-growing species suppress the annoying weeds. The permanent planting can remain the same for many years. If you want to carry out a low-maintenance grave design, we recommend the examples from the table below. As a tip, we recommend using a minimum of 3 pieces per type. This is how the hardy plants work best.The advantage of modern grave design with perennial plants and stones is the low time required for planting and watering. For a low-maintenance grave with full sun, we recommend roofer, blue fescue, and sedum plant. These species get by with little water, do not need pruning or trimming and are the right plants for hot summer weeks. Also other ground covers such as cushion thyme, goldberry or star moss and periwinkleare particularly robust and are suitable for easy-care grave design. How exactly you carry out the design is up to you. Our Plants AZ can also be of help, because there you can find out how to take care of the plants — for example how you should plant star moss or take care of your evergreens.

When planting alternately, put flowers on the grave seasonally. In contrast to permanent planting, the effort is greater, but the expressiveness of the plants is as good as possible in every season. For example, primroses bloom in spring, begonias bloom in summer, and heather or chrysanthemums bloom in autumn. Choose according to your preferences and decide which grave design suits you and the deceased.

When will the hardy grave planting take place?

As in the garden, planting can take place all year round as long as the ground is not frozen. If you want to create a new permanent planting, the best time is late summer and spring. With sufficient soil moisture and temperatures above 10°C, rooting takes place quickly. Summer planting requires a little more finesse when watering, but is also possible. Permanent planting is only possible with trees and shrubs. Some of the examples below are evergreen and decorative, or they bloom over a period of time.

Easy-care grave design as permanent planting

NameLocationBloom time/colorHeight in cmEvergreen

special feature

semi-shady — shady May — June
white to reddish 10 — 15 cmx

flat, particularly robust, evergreen ground cover, red berries

Spindle shrub
(Euonymus fortunei) semi-shady – shady
June inconspicuous, green-yellow up to 50 cmx

attractive leaf coloring, tolerates pruning well

Blue fescue/ bearskin
grass (Festuca glauca/ Festuca scoparia) sunny June — July
inconspicuous, greenish up to 30 cmx

grows in dense tuffs, intense blue or green

(Hedera helix)partially shaded –
shadedSeptember inconspicuous15 cmx

comprehensive, robust

Fat man ( Pachysandraterminalis
) semi-shady — shady April — May
white, inconspicuous 10 cmx

humus-rich soil, leathery, shiny leaves, also good for shady locations

(Vinca minor, Vinca major)partial shade — shadeApril — June
blue, white, pink to 15 cmx

glossy green leaves, low-maintenance ground cover

Colorful alternating planting when tending the grave

In addition, you can add color and variety to the grave design with annual plants. Ground-covering perennial plants are often used as borders. The remaining exchange surface can vary in size depending on taste. Circles or plant strips in different shapes are suitable as shapes. Here you can plant in one color or mixed, depending on your taste. The most flowering plants decorate the grave for a certain time and are seasonally exchanged.A change is often necessary in spring and autumn. From mid-May (after the last frost) you can start planting with a variety of seasonal flowers. These bloom throughout the summer and can be replaced before or after the first frost. You can see a nice example in our article ‘ Grave planting in autumn’.

Our tip: combine alternating and permanent planting. This makes the grave easier to care for, since undemanding plants such as periwinkle or ivy form the basic structure and are decorative all year round. The evergreen ground covers are perennial, hardy and easy to care for.

Which plants are suitable for grave planting in autumn?

What you choose for the design of the final resting place in autumn and winter depends on your preferences. In addition to simply being covered with fir, grave bouquets and flower arrangements can be attractive decorations for the cold season. Plant bowls are also ideal for a grave design in autumn. It is important that you only choose species that are frost hardy for planting the autumn bowls. Furthermore, the autumn grave planting can also take place directly in the ground. To do this, loosen the subsoil well, water the plants before planting and use potting soil. You can also use special grave soil. This special substrate is usually colored black and is used to cover the surface.

Grave decorations for the winter

In the dark season, you can decorate the memorial of loved ones with flower arrangements, drying bouquets and grave lights. The Christmas rose is suitable as alternating planting. The perennials, also known as snow roses, defy the low temperatures with incomparable charm. The enchanting flowers appear even after minus temperatures and bloom in partially shaded locations well into spring.

Instructions for low-maintenance grave planting:

  1. Soil preparation : The best conditions for healthy growth and beautiful blooms create high-quality potting soil and needs-based fertilization. Amend the soil at the grave before the first planting. With a humus-rich substrate you will save yourself later problems with the new plants. If the soil is not prepared, root formation is more difficult and the plants take care of itself. In addition to spring, autumn, like in the garden, is the best time of year to plant a grave.
  2. Choice of plants : Annual plants only flower for a certain period of time, but make the grave look neat and are indispensable. Flowering perennial ground covers (such as cushion phlox, cranesbill or goldberry) are colorful for a few weeks and decorative green the rest of the time. Hardy plants can also be in the cemetery in the cold season. It is therefore important that you pay attention to winter hardiness when choosing plants.

Grave planting in every seasonIn our articles you will find out how you can make the grave stylish, modern and at the same time easy to care for in every season.

Blog posts about: grave planting

Stylish grave planting in autumn made easy — with step-by-step instructionsWe will show you in 5 steps how you can redesign your loved one’s grave in autumn with trendy planting.