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Favorite Flower Arrangement For January

January Flower Arrangement

Can you believe it’s 2012 already? Ring in the new year with Silver Bells — our featured arrangement for January! This beautiful arrangement features flowers in winter colors, accented with unique silver leaves and ornaments.

Everyone’s favorite Gerbera daisies are front and center, reminding us spring is on it’s way! Blue delphiniums really shine when paired with white and silver. Blue flowers are a rare treat, and delphiniums are one of the few naturally blue flowers. Another rare treat featured in this January arrangement, are the uncommon star of Bethlehem flowers. Altogether, Silver Bells shares winter bliss with everyone! [Read more…]

Just In Time For The Fourth — Our Favorite Red, White & Blue Flowers!

Red & White RosesRED is ROSES

When we think roses, our mind almost instantly pictures RED! Red roses are synonymous with passion, and what better emotion captures feelings during the celebration of the birth of our great nation?

Add roses to your 4th of July decor, either mixed with other flowers, or all on their own. Red roses are strong, proud flowers and look impressive no matter how they are used.


Blue Larkspur Flower ArrangementBLUE is LARKSPUR

Larkspur, or delphinium is the official flower for July, and it’s true-blue variation is perfect for our 4th of July list! The delicate blue spurs of this flower stalk are some of the richest blues you’ll find in the flower world.

You can pair larkspur to compliment your flower mix, or use them alone as a true-blue stunner. As you can see by the arrangement to the right, larkspur looks absolutely gorgeous when paired with white flowers.

White LiliesWHITE is LILIES

The lily is definitely a favorite among garden flowers, and flowers in general. Everyone loves the giant blooms. White lilies are perfect for our theme, (although we almost picked calla lilies!)

Lilies made the list because their star-like blooms make the perfect Fourth of July flowers. They also remind us of bursting fireworks! Again, they look stunning on their own, but mix them with other flowers and you’ve got a fantastic flower display!


Mixing it Up — The Perfect 4th of July Flowers

Why not take all 3 of our favorite red, white and blue flowers and create a perfect flower bouquet for the Fourth!? I can see it now: the tall larkspur shooting out of the base of red roses and white lilies. Who wouldn’t want it as their 4th of July centerpiece?

Contact your local florist and see just what all they’ve got in mind for the 4th! Find your own favorite red, white and blue flowers!

Aquamarine Dreams: March’s Favorite Flower Color

AQUAMARINE FLOWERS

This month’s favorite flower color is aquamarine. This year, we are spotlighting unique flower colors for you to use in custom flower arrangements, wedding bouquets, centerpieces and anywhere else you might need great-looking flowers. To make the chosen colors a little more interesting, we are starting with birthstone colors. Last month’s was amethyst, and this month it’s aquamarine, or light blue. (Click here for all of our color of the month posts)

Aquamarine is the bluish-green variety of the mineral beryl. The name beryl comes from the Green, beryllos which means to a “precious blue-green color-of-sea-water stone.” We often see aquamarine used in jewelry and it is the birthstone for March.

When creating a color palette for your flower arrangement or wedding bouquet, choose analogous colors to aquamarine, meaning next to it on the color wheel. These include a mixture of blues and light purples, excellent for pale blue flower arrangements.. Aquamarine’s complement color is a dusty, antique pink — a great accent to your light blue flowers!  The tetrad colors of aquamarine are also easily incorporated into floral designs. The complimentary colors of aquamarine give this hue a surprisingly-rustic mood. Keep these colors in mind when creating your next aquamarine or light blue flower arrangement or color palette.

Aquamarine/Light Blue Color Palette Aquamarine/Light Blue Complement Color Aquamarine/Light Blue Color Scheme

The following guide are a collection of very unique, aquamarine/light blue colored flowers available from your local florists. This guide focuses on light blue flowers you might not think of!

This is a great flower guide for brides looking for unique color palettes and unusual flowers for their wedding. [Read more…]

Can I Get Navy Blue Orchids For A Wedding Bouquet?

Ask the Expert: Blue Orchid arrangements
My daughter is getting married May 7th, 2011. She wants to use Blue Orchids in her floral arrangements, her colors are Navy Blue, White and a touch of silver.(winter in May) What other flowers could you suggest for the bridal bouquet and brides maids bouquets? Thanks for your help! Shelly

Flower Shop Network Flower Expert Reply:

I personally don’t know of a naturally occurring blue orchid. The most commonly used ‘blue orchid’ is the blue Dendrobium, however it is actually a Purple Bombay Dendrobium dyed blue. This flower is more of a purplish-blue color rather than your desired navy. (See picture to the left.) I’ve also seen Misteen Dendrobium dyed blue. This flower is a white orchid with light-pink tipped petals; when dyed blue, it still has hints of purple.

Florists also have the option to use a special floral spray paint and can make your flowers the perfect color for you! This is definitely best left to the professionals as it is very hard to achieve a natural look.

Because blue orchids are dyed, achieving a navy blue orchid might be difficult. Another option would be to use white orchids and navy blue accent flowers.

Some great blue flowers include:

  • Hydrangea
  • Agapanthus
  • Cornflowers or Bachelor Buttons
  • Phlox
  • Delphinium
  • Forget-Me-Nots
  • Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascena)
  • Dyed Daisies
  • Dyed Roses
  • Dyed Carnations
  • Dyed Mums
  • Blue Flag Iris
  • Scabiosas
  • Bluebell (Scilla)
  • Grape Hyacinths

If you still aren’t able to find the navy you are looking for, you might consider using it in other ways, such as feathers, ribbon, wire or crystals. Get with your local florist about this and she will be able to design something fabulous!

For more great ideas, check out our sister site, Wedding And Party Network’s bridal bouquet gallery.

This post is brought to you by local Springfield IL florists.
Not in Springfield? Don’t worry, use Flower Shop Network’s directory of real local florists to find a florist near you!

What Are These Delicate White, Blue and Sky Blue Flowers?

Ask the Expert: Lovely perennial, but what is it?
Springs up in May, has cosmos like stem and leaves and corn flower type flower.  It blooms first as white then gradually turns to a dark blue flower. Sharon


Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:

The flowering plant is a Nigella damascena.  It is commonly referred to as Love-in-a-Mist or Devil-in-a-Bush.  Although it blooms in U.S. gardens in the late spring though summer, florists can use this flower in arrangements year-round. Because of its light and airy quality as well as its blue color, florist use it as a rare blue element in garden style arrangements. Beside the blue flowers, Nigella can also come in pink, white and yellow.  Diseases and pest rarly bother this plant and it comes up from seed fairly easy given the right conditions.

Greenville Florists are proud to bring you this flower identification.

What Is This Blue Flower Found In Upstate South Carolina?

agapanthusAsk the Expert: what kind of flower is this
I have no idea what kind of flower this is.  The flower had not bloomed in the past few years.  I live in upstate SC and this plant is always green and never dies even in the winter it still had very bright green leaves.  I cannot identify it. Melissa

Plant Expert Reply:

Since I can’t tell by the picture the true structure of the plant and it’s foliage, I am basing my identification on the bloom only. I believe the plant you have is an Agapanthus (African Blue Lily).  However, I’m not sure which type of Agapanthus it is.

Agapanthus is a genus of about 10 vigorous perennial species, some of which are evergreen.  They are clump forming with large strap-shaped leaves. Agapanthus needs fertile, moist but well-drained soil.  Full-sun is required for good summer blooming.

Your blooming issues could be lack of sunlight, phosphorus deficiency, or the plant could be buried too deep. A change in any of these conditions could stimulate blooming.

This flower identification question wsa brought to you by local South Carolina Florists

Passion Precedes This Strange Blue Flower

Passionflower - Passiflora

Passionflower - Passiflora

Ask the Expert: What kind of flower is this one found in Florida?
This flower is strange. I have never seen it before… Dereck

Plant Expert Reply:

What you have is a blue passionflower (Passiflora caerulea).  It is a twining vine that can grow 30ft in length. Passionflower is evergreen in tropical climates.  Although it will survive in areas where the winters are cool, the vine will become deciduous. They will produce a fruit that is edible.  Passionflowers are wonderful additions to butterfly gardens since they are exclusive hosts for numerous species of Heliconian butterflies.

This flower identification was brought to by real local florists across the United States and Canada.

Baby Blue Flowers For Fall Wedding

Ask the Expert: Which flowers for my wedding?
Our colors are chocolate brown, baby blue, and ivory/creme. We are getting married outside in a beautiful almost garden type area towards the end of November, so I was wondering what baby blue or creme colored flowers would be best to use? Jordon

Plant Expert Blog:

Finding true blue flowers anytime of year can be a job.  Finding baby blue flowers can be even a little more difficult.  Don’t worry, I have a suggestion.  Try light blue delphinium. It is a gorgeous flower with multiple blooms per stem.  Delphinium is a flower that is at home in the garden as well as formal arrangements.  So, it will be a perfect choice for your fall wedding. I suggest pairing it with ivory Gerberas.  A bouquet with these flowers will give you a romantic garden feel.

Of course, there are other blue flower options available.  Agapanthus is a beautiful ball of blooms that is very versatile and can be used as a focal flower in your wedding bouquet and reception flowers.  Hydrangeas or light blue iris are fantastic choices.  In fact I have seen a beautiful bouquet that contained iris and white flowers.

You have a few blue accent flower choices as well – Asters, centaurea, campanula, limonium, forget-me-not, and scabiosa.

Cream or ivory flowers are easy to find.  My suggestions would be gerberas, roses, agapanthus, orchids, calla lily, alstroemeria, or snapdragons.

The best advise I can give you is to look through Wedding and Party Network’s photo galley under wedding flowers and wedding bouquets.  See what styles you like, then discuss with your local florist which of my  wedding flower suggestions will give you the look you desire.  The florist may have a few ideas of there own.

Good luck and keep me posted.  Maybe I’ll see your wedding flowers in the WPN photo gallery in November.


Hydrangea Availability For Wedding Flowers

Ask the Expert: November/December flowers
I’d really like a bouquet with blue hydrangea and a couple white cabbage roses mixed in, but I think hydrangea will be out of season in late Nov, early Dec. Is there another blue flower I could substitute?

Thank you!

Amy

Plant Expert Reply:

You’ll be glad to know hydrangeas are available to florists year round.  So you won’t need to subsititue another flower for hydrangea blooms in your wedding bouquet.

Although hydrangeas are used mostly in spring (March, April, May) and summer (June, July, August), we are seeing a rise in hydrangeas use in fall weddings (September, October, November).  Winter brides (December, January, February) often use hydrangea blooms when they want a large white bloom.  This beautiful bloom is a wonderful wedding flower choice.

If you still need ideas for blue wedding flowers let me know.

Got The Blues? Check Out These Blue Flowers

Himalyan Blue Poppy courtesy of istock photo

courtesy of istock photo

Adding cool blue to your garden lends a feeling of calmness and restfulness. Because there are so few flowers that are truly blue, this color is most coveted by gardeners. One of the most beautiful blue flowers in the world is the Blue Himalayan poppy (Meconopsis betonicifolia). I haven’t tried to grow them because they are temperamental and quite a challenge to grow in hotter areas, such as my Zone 7. The sight of a cluster of Blue Himalayan poppies blowing in the breeze will make you sigh.

nikko-blue-hydrangea

Introduce lovely old-fashioned ‘Nikko Blue’ or ‘Blue Wave’ hydrangea to your garden as a foundation plant. Hydrangeas have the ability to change color based on the alkalinity of the soil. That means even the lovely ‘Nikko Blue’ has a chance at blooming pink instead of blue! The bloom colors will be pink in alkaline soil. In more acidic soil (5.2-5.5ph), the bloom colors are blue. To ensure that stunning blue hue, you need to manipulate your soil’s pH level and mineral content. This must be done several times during the growing season. You can lower the pH by watering with 2 tbsp of aluminum sulfate per gallon of water. The results are well worth the extra effort!

delphiniumConsider the enchanting Delphinium (also known as Larkspur). Delphinium derives its genus’ name from the Greek word for “dolphin” and is suggested by the shape of a gland in the blossoms that secretes nectar.  Delphiniums make wonderful long-lasting cut flowers and bloom in red, blue and yellow, as well as blended varieties. They prefer cool, moist places and bloom in late spring. Often growing six to eight feet tall, there are some dwarf varieties that top out at just two feet in height. They grow best in full sun, but will tolerate partial shade, and need staking to keep the stems upright. Keep the soil moist to feed quick growth and add a general purpose fertilizer once a month until they have bloomed.

loveinamistThe ethereal, light and airy Love-in-a-Mist (Nigella damascena) is a beautiful Victorian garden annual blooming in soft shades of blue, pink, white, and lavender. This annual herbaceous plant is in the buttercup family (Ranunculaceae), readily self-seeds, and is common in old-fashioned cottage gardens. It grows in full sun to partial shade and blooms from late spring through fall. Nigella is short-lived, so for continuous bloom, repeat sowing every four weeks. You can cut and deadhead this plant to keep it flowering longer.

grape-hyacinthIt just wouldn’t be spring without masses of tiny Grape Hyacinths (Muscari) planted as bulbs in swaths throughout your garden. Growing no more than 10 inches tall, the tight conical heads of tiny round flowers do look like clusters of grapes. Blue is a predominant color but they also come in pale ice blue, white and yellow. Muscari, a member of the Lily family, are quite prolific, making them perfect for naturalizing. Look for the popular ‘Heavenly Blue’, bright blue ‘Dark Eyes’, mid-blue ‘Cote d’Azur’,  sky blue ‘Valerie Finnis’, and the frosty ‘Blue Spike’.  I  have the double-flowered ‘Fantasy Creation’ variety in my garden—their flower heads look like clusters of blue broccoli! Easy to grow in full sun to part shade in zones 3-9 and low-maintenance—what’s not to love about these little blue jewels?

spring-starflowerStar-shaped, pale blue Spring Starflower (Ipheion uniflorum), with grass-like foliage is a spring perennial grown from bulbs and is very long-blooming (3-5 weeks). This plant naturalizes very swiftly, spreading by self-seeding and from bulb offsets. Often used in rock gardens and woodland gardens, they grow just 4-5 inches tall, and are perennials in Zones 6 to 7 (with mulching to protect from frost) and in Zones 8 to 9 without mulching. They can be grown in full sun to part shade, require medium watering, and are low maintenance.

morning-glory-1In my humble opinion, a garden without ‘Heavenly Blue’ Morning Glories (Ipomoea tricolor) is incomplete. Their fleeting beauty will take your breath away. These vigorous climbers are grown from seed and will cover a trellis or wall in just one season- growing up to 20 feet and blooming prolifically. One year, I counted over 300 blooms on the vines that covered my front wall! An herbaceous annual twining vine, it will reach out in a clockwise direction and take hold of anything near it. The 4-5″ trumphet-shaped flowers come in a variety of other colors, including reds, pinks and purples—but there’s nothing more heavenly than the classic  ‘Heavenly Blue’ variety.

bluebellsThe buds of the herbaceous perennial Virginia Bluebell (Mertensia virginica), a member of the Borage family, begin as a pinkish shade and transform into pale blue-violet colored, trumphet-shaped flowers as they mature. Blooming in mid-to-late spring, they can be found growing en masse in moist woodland areas in partial to full shade. Plant them with hostas and ferns as companion plants.

blue-eyed-grassBest planted in large groups for maximum visual impact, Blue-eyed grass (Sisyrinchium angustifolium), a member of the Iris family, is a late spring-blooming perennial with very tiny (less than 1/2 inch!) iris-like blue flowers with yellow centers. Blue-eyed Grass does well in moist areas with some sun, and if happy in its spot, will spread to form stands. Its diminutive size makes it great for adding a grasslike addition to a small garden where ornamental grass would be overwhelming.

brookside-blue-hardy-geraniumThis Hardy Geranium (Geranium ‘Brookside’ cultivar), also known as Cranesbill, is a deciduous, herbaceous perennial that forms a neat mound that is about 18″ high and wide. Flowering begins in spring. If you cut it back after flowering, it should bloom again in the summer. It makes a great filler for mixed borders or full-sun perennial beds and grows well in containers. It prefers full sun but can tolerate part shade for half of the day. It does best in moist, well-drained soil. Hardy in zones 5-8.

Salvias also provide that saturated blue color that gardeners seek. Look for Mealycup Sage (Salvia farinacea ‘Victoria Blue’), a member of the mint family. This herbaceous perennial is commonly grown as an annual in cold areas. Striped Squill (Puschkinia libanotica) is a beautiful spring bulb flower growing just 4-5 inches tall, with pale white-blue petals with darker blue center stripes. If you’re an Iris fan, look for the lovely blossoms of the Giant Blue Flag Louisiana Iris (Iris giganticaerulea) with its four foot stems; or ‘Sky Beauty’ Dutch Iris with its combination of white and french blue petals with a single lemon yellow blotch. Agapanthus, or ‘Lily of the Nile’, with its blue ball-shaped clusters and funnel-shaped flowers on four foot stems, is a showy addition to any garden.

forgetmenotsAnd finally, we can’t forget the diminutive Forget-Me-Nots (Myosotis alpestris)! This perennial grows 5-12 inches high in alpine meadows (or your garden!). Each dainty flower is a mere 1/3 inch wide, with sky blue petals, a white inner ring, and a tiny yellow center. Blooming in May and June, hardy Forget-Me-Nots prefer partial shade and spread by reseeding. These charming old fashioned flowers can help fill in the blanks in your garden!

If you don’t have the blues, you certainly should – for your garden, that is!

Don’t keep the blues to yourself.  Did you know that local florists use many of these blue flowers, Hydrangea, Delphinium, Niegella, Grape Hyacinths, Iris, Agapanthus, and Forget-me-nots, in flower arrangements? So even if you don’t have a garden full of blue flowers, you can share a beautiful blue bouquet with a friend.

Cindy Dyer is a freelance graphic designer and photographer in Alexandria, Virginia. Visit her blog at www.cindydyer.wordpress.com and her botanical gallery at www.cindydyer.zenfolio.com. She can reached at dyerdesign@aol.com. All photos © Cindy Dyer, unless specified otherwise.