Helping a friend or family member grieve their loss is hard. It is a tender time in someone’s life, and it is important as a friend that you support them in loving and thoughtful ways. It can feel intimidating to find the perfect gift that is supportive, sensitive, and gentle on a grieving heart.
When we launched laurelbox in 2015, we knew that we wanted each gift we designed to feel intentional and heartfelt for someone who is experiencing deep grief. Denise had previously planted seed paper, and knew that it was a special and unique way to grow a garden. That got her to thinking – what if the ritual of planting flower seed paper could actually be a special way to honor someone who has passed away? And with that idea, she set to work to design a meaningful seed paper set. It is such a wonderful gift for those in mourning.
Plant the Seed Paper with Them
The best way to use seed paper in the grieving process is to first write a message of love on the seed paper. The seed paper available at laurelbox can be written on, and most people who plant our seed paper first write a message on the paper before planting. Some people choose to share favorite memories about their loved one, to write letters to them, or to draw meaningful symbols on the seed paper. After writing on the seed paper, there is something very therapeutic about planting the paper in a special memorial garden.
You can be a support system for your grieving friend by being present with them when they embark on this special activity. Set aside time to plant the seed paper together and share memories of the loved one while you plant the seed paper. This can help encourage your friend to share their heart and is a powerful way to bond you together. Time is one of the best gifts you can give someone, and the gift of meaningful time together to process and share loss is a powerful way to support your friend or family member.
Place Commemorative Stones Around the Area
As we mentioned earlier, planting seed paper is a perfect way to start a memorial garden in honor of the deceased loved one. The plantable paper can either be planted in a garden bed or in a simple pot in the yard. After it is planted, it is special to create a little garden around the seed paper.
Some people choose to craft stepping stones in honor of their loved one. You can purchase a kit to create your own mosaic stepping stone, and design a special stepping stone for the memorial garden. Many people choose to put important symbols that remind them of their loved one. It is a special and simple way to make your garden even more unique and special.
You can also add wind chimes, as many people find the sound of wind chimes to be comforting and symbolic of the presence of their loved one. A wind chime makes a really special addition to a memorial garden, and is a perfect gift.
Garden stones with heartfelt quotes or sayings are another meaningful thing to place in a memorial garden. There are some beautiful memorial garden stones that are so special for grieving hearts that can also withstand the outdoor elements throughout the year. This just adds such a special touch to the garden!
Working to create a memorial garden gives a grieving person a physical space to mourn their loved one. For many people, it becomes a sanctuary where they can feel the presence of their loved one, and spend time reflecting on their life together.
We have put together two different videos with directions on how to plant a memorial garden. This first one shows some of the best gifts you can give a friend who is grieving and how they can use them in their personal memorial garden.
While this second video is planting seeds (not seed paper), it has great step by step directions on how to plant a memorial garden in honor of a loved one.
How to Plant Seed Paper
Not only are seed paper sheets easy to use and friendly to even the most beginner gardeners, they are also sustainable and eco-friendly. While Denise handmade our seed paper in her home kitchen for the first year of laurelbox, we now source our seed paper from a company that hand-crafts it from 100% post-consumer recycled paper.
Before planting wildflower seed paper, check to see that the paper is embedded in a wildflower blend of non-invasive perennials and annuals. High quality seed paper should have a high germination rate to ensure it grows successfully.
After writing the special message on the seed paper, it is ready to be planted in the garden. Seed paper is super simple to plant and can be grown both indoors and outdoors. Plant the paper outdoors in early spring or late fall, and indoors at any time. If you start planting seed paper indoors, it can be transplanted in early spring to grow outdoors.
Before planting, soak the seed paper in water overnight to soften the paper. Loosen the soil in your garden bed, or fill your planter pot with potting soil. Place the wet seed paper in the ground, and cover with a thin ¼” of soil. Over the next four to six weeks, be sure to diligently water your new seeds. Consistently watering your seed paper after planting is the most important step to success! After your sprouts have been established around six weeks, you can transplant them if you wish.
One of the best benefits of seed paper is that it can be grown indoors, which is great for individuals who live in urban areas, or in an apartment or condo building. If you are looking for advice on how to grow your seed paper garden indoors, we highly recommend this blog post as a great resource!
Gift it in a Card
Seed paper is also available from many companies in the form of a greeting card. If you are looking for a meaningful card to send someone grieving, there is something special about a Sympathy Plantable Card.
You can order a package of multiple seed paper cards and send them to your friend throughout the year as they grieve. Send them a card they will love and write them a heartfelt note. As you write them notes, be sure to explain the significance of the seed paper and how to plant it!
Give it to Them with a Gift Card
If you want to make your gift extra special, you can wrap up the seed paper with a gift card to their favorite restaurant or store. This is a thoughtful way to support them with food as they grieve, and also pair it with a meaningful but affordable gift.
We hope this helps you as you gift and use plantable seed paper for mourning!