Flowers, grave care and Indiana: A new kind of entrepreneurship?

There is a new type of entrepreneurship that is sweeping the United States in the wake of terrible economies. Recently, an Indianapolis, Indiana couple started a new business venture, Tombstones and Daisies. They offer grave tending services such as flower placement, headstone clean up and grave site maintenance. The target market for this grave site maintenance service is people who have friends or loved ones buried far away. Many people have moved to different areas of the country, but still want someone near Indianapolis to help them with remembrances.

This type of out of the box thinking is an example of American ingenuity in the face of tough economic times. Who would have thought there would be a market for this kind of service? Obviously, this couple did. They are indicative of a wave of people that have been hit hard by tough economic times. These folks have two choices. They can refuse to become victims and try to create their own security, or they can give up and try to let an already bankrupt federal government entitlement system try to take care of them.

With high unemployment in most parts of the US, many people are turning to the creation of their own jobs. Unemployment benefits are not enough to keep the credit wolves away from the door, and they expire after a limited time. It's estimated that 35% of those out of work don't show up in unemployment statistics. They've either dropped off the benefit rolls or were independent contractors to begin with.

Many of these unemployed have skills that make them perfect candidates for entrepreneurship. In the case of the Indiana couple, he was in the radio sales management and marketing business for over 30 years. His ability to promote a new service business is invaluable. She has a Masters Degree and was the chief financial officer of a small business corporation. As a team, they are building a business that they hope will offer replacement of some of their security in turbulent times.

Time will tell if the central Indiana couple are right about the market for a grave tending business. Who knows whether a business of grave site maintenance and flower placement on tombstones will be the next sustainable, "green business" opportunity. I wouldn't bet against them. They represent the type of small business that is the backbone of the United States.

One thing is certain about the creation of a small businesses. People around the United States are resilient. Many are not afraid to try new things, in order to make a living and enjoy their work. Hard economic times have always seemed to bring out the best qualities in people. When the US comes out of it's recession, part of the credit will go to those individuals who refused to become victims, when faced with hardship. They will be part of the wave of new businesses that keep people off welfare rolls and earning their own way.

I'm Ben Stevens and I write about people and their struggle to stay afloat in tough economic times. If you'd like to follow the progress of this Indiana couple, check out their grave tending business at When you feel like the world is closing in on you, visit my blog at

I have seen many struggles in my 40+ years of small business ownership. I have been a casualty a few times myself. I salute those with the resilience that it takes to pick yourself up, set your course and forge ahead in your small but mighty business.

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