As we slip into spring there are a beautiful array of seasonal flowers becoming available. Do you buy a bunch and aren’t entirely sure about how to care for them properly and arrange them beautifully? Here are some super tips from Barbara Buxton of Burton Flower Club. Barbara advises...
Buying your flowers Whether you buy your cut flowers from a Florist or Supermarket avoid those displayed near fruit, in sunlight, draughts or open to the elements. They need to be fresh with crisp stems, foliage not wilting or turning yellow or brown. Daisy type flowers should have tight greenish centres and Carnations open with no white “threads” showing.
Help your flowers live longer Some guidelines are necessary to promote the life of your flowers. All your containers, scissors and secateurs must be scrupulously clean to avoid bacteria developing and entering the cut surface of the flowers/foliage. Also, make sure that your scissors and secateurs are sharp to avoid damage to the stems.
Basic conditioning Cut approx. 2.5cms off strong flower stems (e.g. Roses) at an acute angle to enable the flower to take up water efficiently, remove all lower leaves that will be below the water line because they will encourage bacterial growth. Make a vertical slit and scrape the bark for about 2.5cms on stems of woody foliage, place flowers and foliage in buckets of deep, tepid water.
Soft fleshy stems (e.g. Tulips) need shallow water.
Don’t forget to add cut flower food to both woody and soft stemmed arrangements.
As always there are some exceptions to these guidelines but treating your flowers this way should suit most types of flowers. Now let’s progress to containers...
Choosing your container The flowers and container should combine so that one doesn’t dominate the other. Consider where the flower filled container will be placed so that it has enough space, be it a jam jar, cup and saucer or even a juice carton!
Help with stability You can use various mechanics to help stabilise stems such as floral foam, pin holder, wire, pebbles etc. If you’re interested in a simple seasonal display without the need to use these, at the moment you can buy a bunch of Daffodils and arrange in a glass jar together with some stems of Pussy Willow or Catkins for added interest.
Watering Remember to top up the water using a long spouted can to avoid disrupting your arrangement.
Most importantly ENJOY!
If you’re inspired to give flower arranging a go, why not pop along to a local flower arranging club, such as: Burton Flower Club, they meet at the Priory Centre on Church Road in Stretton on the first Friday of most months at 7.30pm. They are very welcoming to visitors and new members. Why not give them a call to find out more: 01283 814800 / 01283 704180.