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Exotic Flowers in Boston

Summer Flowers That Make Great Indoor Flower Arrangements

Posted by Suzie Canale on Tue, Jul 03, 2018

Everything around us is up and blooming here in New England with beautiful foliage and flowers popping up from the green ground!  Whether we are growing our own summer beds or just enjoying someone else’s landscaping efforts, Bostonians are stopping often during their daily busy routines to embrace the beauty of summertime blossoms and the significant appeal they add to the view.  Personally, I love to check out what everyone else is cultivating in their yards, particularly varieties of blossoms that can be easily cut and transferred in to the home. Making your own arrangements during this time of year can be both rewarding and therapeutic, making it a popular past time for many.  Of course, there are certain blooms that are better for use in this hobby that browsers should be aware of when browsing the selection. Zinnias, hydrangeas and roses are some of the more dependable species but if you don’t see these where you live, there are plenty more to choose from. Be on the lookout for wild sweet pea, lavender, catmint, peonies, sunflowers, sedum, nasturtiums and yarrow if you don’t have issues with serious allergies.  Types that may be difficult to remove along with possibly shortening their lifespan are poppies, morning glories, scabiosa and lantana so be aware of what makes a great clipping as opposed to a bad.

budget flowers

photo credit via aboutflowers.com

Once you spot something you like that will withstand the procedure, grab a good pair of sharp clipping shears and snip the stem at the base.  If it is attached to a larger limb, be sure not damage the existing plant so that another offshoot will grow in to replace the one you took. Small samples of flowers are perfectly okay to use in indoor arrangements but taking the base plant can end up killing the entire thing, allowing no growth to return at all.


The next step is to immediately pace the summer bouquet in a clean container of warm (not hot!) water.  If the vase you are using is a bit dusty and you want to give it a quick rinse before designing your flowers, be sure not to use soap that will cling to the edges.  The cleanser can kill off your blooms quicker than anything, which can act like a poison to the stem. Depending on the varieties you’ve chosen, you may have to change the water frequently to avoid buildup of murky liquid-a not so pretty presentation for the flowers you’ve collected.  Place in a warm to cool area that does not exceed temperatures past 70 degrees and enjoy the blooms for as long as they last!

Tags: Summer, July, Sunflowers

Flowers for Your Summer Cottage

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, May 25, 2018

The salty air is beginning to waft off our coastlines and people everywhere in New England are thrilled to be dreaming of near future visits to our gorgeous beaches.  For some Bostonians, they might even be lucky to own or rent a cottage on the Cape, Maine or Rhode Island in the next few months where they will enjoy the closeness in proximity to the ocean.  New England summers are a treat for us locals so we tend to accentuate the season as much as possible with barbecues, pool parties and evening get togethers on the porch. Foods such as shrimp, lobster and clams are a theme for these events but other areas of party planning are equally qualified for the same sort of inspiration-namely flower arrangements.

beach_theme_flowers

photo via aboutflowers.com

While we usually select blooms such as red berries and pine greenery for winter décor, summer time reflects a whole other field of wild blooms of a softer palette.  Mimicking the motif of a beach cottage, these varieties are softer in nature with hues of pale peaches, whites, creams and blues. Top designers around the city try their best to replicate the sensation of the sea and sand within their pieces so customers will take in the “feel” of the beach even if they are remaining within their city dwellings.  For me, this is my favorite time of year when blossoms represent a core attribute of peace and tranquility, especially when displayed near the oceanfront. If you are anticipating a love for summer flowers reminding you of past/present days spent on the seashore, check out these “can’t miss” bouquets that envelope the meaning of beach living in New England.

beach_theme_flowers_boston-resized-600

Stunning flowers to request or replicate on your own which convey a beachy feel are those that are light, airy and whimsical.  This may sound like a strange description but species such as delphinium, lace flower, ranunculus, garden roses and wisteria are perfect examples of what I’m talking about.  If you live by the shore, take special notice of any blooming shrubs such as hydrangea that love the salt air-they make great clipping for inserts in arrangements. Peonies are another excellent variety that goes cuckoo for a seaside habitat, particularly those that produce buds of sweet pink, cream and blush.  I also like a fresh vase of stems that have been gathered from around the yard in hues of deep blues and purples. If you’re planning a summer getaway to the ocean or just enjoy the notion of the idea, treat yourself to a cottage inspired arrangement which will keep you happy throughout the warmer season!

Tags: Hostess Flowers, Beach, June, Summer, July

Flowers that Thrive on Heat Waves

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Jul 29, 2015

 

New England has its fair share of blizzards but lucky for us, we also get to experience the warmer side of the weather spectrum during July and August.  Although temperatures in the metro Boston area commonly subside within the mid to low eighty’s, we can sometimes experience the occasional heat wave.  Since most of us are more accustomed to the chillier days of the year, a day of ninety-degree weather can sometimes make us a bit uncomfortable and dare I say-anticipating January and February once again.  But did you know that our flower and vegetable beds crave the heat causing seedlings and fruit to germinate at a healthy rate.  With the necessary watering, gardens can boom to three times the expected size during a season of muggy humidity.  Still not sold on the importance of steamy July and August months?  Take a look at these varieties that will make you thank Mother Nature for an extra fiery summer in New England!



Amaranthus


This is a fantastic flower to grow during the blazing New England summer months because it is both draught and heat resistant.  They are best started by seed indoors and then can be transplanted to a regular garden once the fear of a frost has passed.  When they’re ready, make sure you place them in a full-sun location since they’ll only grow taller and bigger with this type of environment.


Cosmos


Cosmos are the #1 first choice for my garden because even if I’m having a lousy growing season, I can always depend on cosmos to be spectacular!  Having the capability to re-seed itself, they can grow extremely tall so staking the stems may be necessary.  Be sure not to over water and allow full sunshine to increase bud productivity.


Lantana


Lantana is the answer to your prayers if you have a place in your yard that has difficulty providing the right outer elements for successful growing.  Craving little moisture, this fuss free plant is a knockout in the scorching temperatures and comes in a wide variety of stunning colors.  Another bonus of this plant is that critters such as rabbits despise the scent so you will find it beneficial to place the flower around your vegetable crops.


Tags: Gardening, Plants, Summer, July, August

Gardening Calendar for July

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Jul 01, 2015

July_Calendar-page0001 an easy reference guide for the novice, intermediate or expert gardener.

Tags: Gardening, Gardening in Boston, outdoors, Vegetable Garden, Garden Calendar, July

Festive 4th of July Desserts for Kids

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Jun 29, 2015

Independence Day is filled with red, white and blue food including delicious desserts for kids! Not only can we utilize the yummy berries that are finally in season such as blueberries, raspberries and strawberries but our pastry chefs all over Boston are whipping up scrumptious creations that are sure to please the whole family.  While some foodies suggest high calorie desserts with extensive ingredients (not to mention extensive sugar), this selection offers easy to prepare directions as well as fuss free diet restrictions.  With these delightful treats, you’ll be able to ring in the 4th of July with a bang!

 

Freeze Your Own Popsicles

 bomb_pop

Making your own popsicles is a simple way to invent a fast snack while still being able to control the sugar content by selecting a preferred juice.  Flavors that work the best for a red, white and blue theme are cranberry, fruit punch, grape, blueberry, white grape and lemonade juices.  Most of these varieties offer a low calorie and reduced sugar version so your kids will be able to cool off while slurping down a healthy Popsicle.  If you really want to get fancy, you can freeze them in three separate levels by placing one layer on top of the other just as long as you freeze them one at a time.

 

 strawberry_shortcake

Strawberry Shortcake

 

Okay, so this sweet may not be on the healthy side but honestly, who cares!  You can make this dessert an essential dish at your 4th of July barbecue table just by place a huge scoop of whip cream on top of a piece of shortbread (store bought is fine).  Once you’ve started piling on the good stuff, add red and blue berries  (strawberries and blueberries work best with shortcake) that will finish it off perfectly.  Don’t be afraid to substitute when needed such as replacing the cream with a high quality French vanilla ice cream.               photo credit: MarthaStewart.com

 

Strawberry Bombs

 FruitCup2smaller

                         photo credit: thefreshfridge.com

This is so great you’re going to want to make these year round!  Just take a strawberry and clean out the insides with a spoon delicately.  Fill the middle with whip cream and top with one ripe blueberry.  Place in the refrigerator overnight to allow hardening so the cream doesn’t spill out.  Serve before, after and during your barbecue and watch that plate disappear within seconds!

 

Tags: Dessert, July 4th, Chef, Kids, cooking, Summer, July

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