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Short Floral Lifespans but Totally Worth It

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Nov 17, 2017

I just recently wrote a blog about flowers that are the perfect purchase for longer living arrangements, highlighting species such as roses and aster which will live for longer periods of time compared to others.  While many people have this goal in mind when visiting their local flower shop, others (like me) are more driven to the uniqueness of a variety and will forgo longevity just to enjoy the flower for whatever time they have.  Economically, it’s probably not the way to go but if you’re bored buying the same old blooms like Alstromeria, Bells of Ireland and Asiatic lilies just because they’ll survive longer on your table, then you might want to try out these varieties that are totally worth the price.  Perhaps the exotic presentation is what appeals to you or the alluring scent that puts you at ease but whatever the characteristic is that you’re looking for-these blooms are almost promised to please.


Exotic Visual Presentation:


Long/Short Gloriosa

Gloriosa is a stunning tropical bloom that comes in shades of yellow, green and red but no matter what hue you choose, it’s bound to be an eye catcher.  They have a head shaped like a hand that extends petals from the center in beautiful arch patterns which resemble more of a sculpture than an ordinary flower. You don’t need many stems to pack a visual punch so keep these babies in mind for parties and weddings.

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Cut Phalaenopsis

If you buy the plant, phalaenopsis will generally last around a month but if you purchase stems that have already been cut, they can last less than a week.  Why bother?  Because they are nothing short of “grand” when arranged in tall glass vases and placed in the center of a room as a centerpiece.  Trust me, you won’t need any further décor.


Scabiosa

Another one of my favorites, scabiosa is a pretty, delicate summer bloom that comes in a variety of shades such as purple, blue, pink, white, cream and even red.  They have soft, fluffy heads that are mindful of warm days and look perfect mixed with other species or simply kept alone in a bunch.  They only last for about four to five days during certain times of the year but if you live close to a farm stand, they’ll probably have a consistent supply when harvest season arrives.


Aromatic Properties:


Chocolate Cosmos

Wow!  If you love the smell of chocolate than you’ll love these seasonal stunners that honestly will remind you of dessert!  The spring blossoms are usually dark in color, either in hues of deep brown and crimson, which make an exotic and sexy display.


Gardenia

This one is a classic that has survived the test of time and still remains one of the most requested items for weddings.  Having a lifespan of only two to three days, gardenias are breathtaking in both sight and aroma, which gives any event a classy, nostalgic feel.  

Tags: Chocolate Cosmos, Orchids, Flowers

Which Flowers Last the Longest ?

Posted by Suzie Canale on Mon, Nov 13, 2017


This question can be a major problem when deciding which kind of flowers to buy at your next trip to the florist… What species are going to last the longest?  Unfortunately, not even your most dedicated and informed florist can have the absolute answer to this commonly faced dilemma but we can give you some advice and tips to guide your decision.  In horticulture, there are certain species that are known to have more extensive properties of longevity over others.  Sometimes the reason lies behind the species durability and other times this depends on its freshness.  The point is, since the variables can be forever changing, it can be difficult to place your bet on what flower is going to outlive the rest.  Is it simply the luck of the draw when it comes time to placing your order?  Well, sometimes but by following these few pieces of advice, you’ll definitely increase your chances of taking home a “wick” package of blossoms.

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What to Ask:

You might have to play a little detective when browsing the floral inventory so make sure you follow these steps.  First of all, keep your eyes peeled for moldy green water or liquid that has a bit of a stagnant smell.  This is a sure-fire tip that the stems have been sitting in the bucket for over a week and you might want to keep looking.  If the liquid smells fresh, then your odds are better that the florist just unpacked them and put them in water.  Another thing to keep in mind is if the foliage has been already stripped close to the head of the flower.  This process is called “cleaning” the stem and can mean that the flowers are being re-primped to help move them out of the store.  The head of the bloom might still look good but it’s a safe bet that the leaves have been removed from shriveling or yellowing.  Also, be on the lookout for droopy or iridescent petals which can be a sign of age as well as missing parts of the head that may have dropped already.


Species to Keep an Eye Out for:

If your number 1 goal is to select the longest lasting flower in the shop and not necessarily a particular bloom you prefer, then there’s actually a list of species that typically survive longer than other inventory on display.  For example, chocolate cosmos (my favorite!) will simply not live as long as roses or hybrid delphinium compared to carnations.  Of course, there’s always influential factors that will elongate life spans such as whether or not it is native or if the product was bought from a pedigree supplier versus a lower grade wholesaler.  Yes, there are varying effects on flowers but if you stick to this list, you’re bound to have success with a healthy arrangement to enjoy in your home.


Blooms that are probable to withstand at least a week to ten days:

  1. Freesia
  2. Roses
  3. Bells of Ireland
  4. Chrysanthemums
  5. Asiatic Lilies
  6. Alstromeria
  7. Asters
  8. Gerbera Daisies
  9. Carnations
  10. Cymbidium Orchids

Tags: Carnations, Orchids, Roses, Flowers

Sexy Flowers to Enhance Your Love Life

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Jul 26, 2017


They say that scented candles, oysters, exercise and some pretty negligee are the only things you’ll need if you want to spark up your love life.  I don’t know about you but I’ve tried all of these ideas and still- I’m looking for more options to make the romance department even hotter than it was before.  Being married for several years, I bet I’m not alone when it comes to brainstorming for inspiration to help spice things up between you and your mate.  Realizing that everyone has different strokes for different folks, there are a wide variety of tactics one can implement to assist within these matters. You might even find that certain flowers are capable of putting the “pop” back into your relationship magic, according to industry experts.  

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Now I’m not just preaching to the choir since I was a florist many years ago.  If you think about it, flowers possess several attributes, which affect essential “sex driven” aspects of our senses.  Smell, sight and touch can all be found within the characteristics of some of Mother Nature’s most impressive beauties, particularly within the rose and orchid families.  I’m sure you have experienced a seductive aroma that’s gotten your tail wagging so why is it so hard to believe that bloom can have the same effect?  Some of the most expensive perfumes in the world are made from flora and fauna, making the real deal even better.  As crazy as it may sound, there are actually scientists who experiment with this very hypothesis and have come to the conclusion that certain varieties of flowers will in fact heat things up in the bedroom if you know what I mean...


Curious what they are?  I thought you might be…

Passion Flower    

Garden Roses

Lavender

Orchids












       Lavender           Oncidium

 

Tags: Garden Roses, Emotion Flowers, Orchids, Flowers for Emotional Health, Lifestyle

Exotic Flowers from Portugal

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, May 05, 2017

Portugal is a beautiful European country bordering Spain on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other.  The republic is known for it’s fine wine and dining as well as a culture rich in music and art.  While this warm weather spot is a major tourist destination for visitors worldwide, Portugal’s true hidden gem lies beyond the white powdered beaches…

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Due to a climate that benefits from warm temperatures and a wide range of desirable topography, vegetation is abundant across the area growing thousands of beautiful specimens year round.  One location, which is particularly successful within the horticulture industry is Madeira Natural Park that expands more than two thirds across Portugal.  Here you will find rare varieties of orchids as well as trees belonging to the Lauraceae family including laurel, bay and mahogany shrubs and moss.  Depending on which trail that you choose it is possible to explore several different zones where the flora and fauna changes accordingly.  Because the country is mixed between Mediterranean, Atlantic and European environment fluctuations, you never know what you may stumble upon making the adventure all the more worthwhile.

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If you’re interested in the types of flowers that are most prevalent in Portugal, you’ll be happy to know there is no shortage of stunning blooms in this neck of the woods.  The number one species representing Portugal as the official flower is “Lavender”, which is also popular in the United States.  The multi-purpose blooms not only grace the tables in vases and bouquets but also serve as medicinal tools and additives within makeup, tea and balms.  The tropical characteristics this country possesses also allows a healthy growth of varieties found in rainforests such as birds of paradise, orchids, proteas and calla lilies.  If you’re a wild flower lover like I am, you’ll also be pleased to know that because of the variations in soils, Portugal can also reap bountiful crops of sunflowers, morning glories and magnolias.  Having such a large assortment to choose from, Portuguese florists are well versed in designing an eclectic menu for customers for all sorts of tastes and preferences.  

Tags: Flowers Worldwide, Exotic Flowers, Worldwide Flowers, Orchids, Lavender

Wild About Orchids

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Apr 05, 2017


My favorite blooms in the whole world are tropical orchids.  The color, structure, florets, foliage and scent are all attributes, which keep this variety of flora and fauna one of the most sought after flowers in the nation.  Unlike other species, orchids have a sort of funky presentation that illuminate a magical and care free spirit.  Many believe that people with out going, creative and imaginative personalities are immediately drawn to them because of their own unique individuality.  Orchids are also available in a hundreds of different flavors and can cost anywhere from a few dollars to thousands depending on the breed.  Over the last three decades, orchid collecting has become a fashionable pastime for botanists all over the world, where additions of rare varieties are said to be valued in the hundreds of thousands.  I figure you have to really like orchids to be willing to spend so much but if you’re looking to start a compilation that starts a little cheaper, why not check out these affordable species sold in greenhouses near you!

Phalaenopsis

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This variety is probably very familiar to people because it is sold everywhere including flower shops, nurseries and even grocery stores.  Phalaenopsis come in a wide variety of hues including white, pink and mixed.  If you have a sense of humor, you can even find them dyed in yellow, orange and blue.  Most of the time, you can find a pretty decent one for only $19.99 and you should be able to get at least four weeks of blooms out of it when watered properly.  

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Mokara

If you don’t exactly have a green thumb, you might want to invest in the Mokara Orchid since it is easy to care for and forgiving enough that it can withstand a bit of neglect.  Available in cut or plant form; they are easily mixed with other flowers or stunning all by themselves in a vase.  This species also is grown in a spectrum of color such as orange, yellow, pink, purple and red which is majestic in presentation.   

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Cymbidiums

Although cymbidiums can be a bit tricky to care for, they’re well worth the effort because these plants are stunning for any home or office to display.  Depending on the breed, cymbidiums can either be very inexpensive or very expensive.

Tags: Exotic Flowers, Orchids, Orchid Plants

Nancy Reagan Left a White Orchid for Barbara Bush

Posted by Rick Canale on Thu, Jan 05, 2017

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the above photo and below text appeared on The New York TImes archives page on Instagram 1/5/2017 https://www.instagram.com/nytarchives/

nytarchivesBefore he left the Oval Office to attend the inauguration of President George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan took one last look at his desk. @jrlopeznyc — a retired staff photographer who now works as a freelance picture editor for @nytimes — captured this scene on January 20, 1989. He was one of about a dozen photographers in the room that day. “Unlike other situations, we were not being held back or put in a certain area in the Oval,” @jrlopeznyc recalls. He decided to wait near the desk, but he remembers watching @whitehouse photographer @petesouza take photos from a 12-foot ladder. The next day, @nytimes published this photo and described the president and first lady's departure. “Mr. Reagan put out both hands to touch the desk as though to hold it in his memory," we reported. Meanwhile, Nancy Reagan spent the morning searching the @whitehouse, making sure she’d packed everything. In an empty drawer, she left a note for Barbara Bush, along with a small white orchid. — @kermac, @nytimes social photo editor #inauguration #regram

 

Tags: President, Character, Presidental Flowers, Presidents Like Flowers, Orchids

Hot New Flower Trends for 2017

Posted by Suzie Canale on Fri, Dec 30, 2016

Whenever a new year rolls around, you have to expect a whole new floral fad to go along with it!  Although 2016 focused on compact arrangements styled after European influence using soft and neutral colors, 2017 is showing signs of a completely different look for the future.  Architecturally inspired pieces are being scene photographed on the hottest industry covers and are likely to be the next big thing in flowers!  Sticks, branches, leaves and other minimalistic material are being sought to replace “bushier” blooms such as hydrangeas and asters.  Orchids such as cymbidiums are replacing these blossoms and changing the “smoothed out” style to a much brasher, funkier appeal. Think sleek, sharp and tightly groomed, florists are after this edgier method of combining stems and hopeful that Bostonians will take to the trend.  Pastels and even hues are also out and have been replaced by tones that acutely contrast one another in ways never seen before. A year ago, we would have thought these colors clashed but now experts can’t get enough of the fascinating demarcation.  We’re raising the bar for floral design in 2017 so take a peek at what’s going to be hot and what’s not!

In - Orchids continue to be the mainstay. Vandas, Miltonia, Cymbidiums and Phaelenopsis.

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In - Reds, blues and Greens for colors. Check out the new Black Pearl rose from Rosa Prima.

Out - round, mounded and compacted arrangements. It's about time this design style has died. While appreciated in its simplicity, skilled floral designers have grasped the importance of symmetry and framing each flower. 

Out - Blush Pinks, Cream and White-All Pastels. 2017 is all about colors and energy. If we can have an orange president. Expect lime greens, purples, deep reds and greens to pop the landscape. 

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Tags: Orchids, Flowers, Trends, 2017

Trimming the Christmas Tree with Orchids

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Dec 14, 2016

Snowflakes are beginning to fall throughout New England and we are making our plans for our holiday décor!   We’ll be hanging wreathes, boughs and lighting throughout our homes in the hopes that these festive additions will bring joy to our family and friends.  For Boston florists, they’re making their lists as we speak to prepare for customers who wish to spread the spirit with decadent blooms.  Poinsettias, pine ribbing and myrtle garland always make the top of the list but this year, we’re seeing an interesting trend emerge…

 

A plentiful variety of orchids are being featured in designer magazines where their customary implant within urns and vases are extending into other areas of Christmas grooming.  While the tropical flowers still remain as a substantial part of December centerpieces, they’re also being used as trimming for the tree!  If you think about it, this is a clever idea for several reasons including their impressive longevity when placed in water tubes and the wide spectrum of color available from most species.  You may have seen flowers such as roses and baby’s breadth hung from balsam boughs in previous years but this new implementation of fancy fleurs is sure to turn heads and outlast past varieties. Flower lovers have always adored the idea of pruning with their favorite blooms but are often disappointed by the cost and maintenance.  If fussy flowers are chosen as ornaments, the upkeep to maintain a lively looking display for the duration of Christmas may prove extremely difficult. 

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photo credit via Cheyenne Tozzi's Instagram Page 

That’s why orchids are the solution to this problem and can be enjoyed long after the season if cared for properly.  Here’s a list of favorites that are sure-fire winners for vase and tree trimming this holiday season.    

 

Cypripedium

Not only are these orchids strong and resilient against heat and cold, but they are also grown in the perfect hues for Christmas-chartreuse green and white. The heads make them noticeable among other ornaments as well and provide an interesting conversational piece for guests. 

 

 Phalaenopsis

Phalaenopsis are one of the most popular orchids around the world and due to its impressive beauty, there’s little argument as to why.  A single head is large enough to be placed in the tree alone or you can choose large branches to drape across the branches.  White remains the most requested color, although this species also comes in shades of pink, yellow and peach.  If you really want to get creative, inquire from your florist options for dyed heads. 

 

James Story

This is another great option due to its coloring, which is deep red or crimson.  The florets are shaped as small stars that are delicately grown up a slender stem.  Designers are most likely to place James Story in water tubes and use along side other orchids that are white or brightly colored.   

Tags: Orchids, Holiday Decor, Christmas Trees, Christmas

Beautiful Flowers that Resemble Other Fascinating Images

Posted by Suzie Canale on Sat, Oct 01, 2016

It’s not enough when a beautiful blossom is striking in appearance on its own but when it resembles something else such as a butterfly or flying dove, that’s pretty incredible!  Recently my aunt sent me some stunning pictures of flowers that really look like other people, animals and artifacts that inspired me to share them with you.  While studying the photos, I learned a few important things about visual identifying and the undeniable relevance of certain plantings to living beings.  Not only are they an impressive optical illusion, but these photos also impress the brilliance with which Mother Nature has created within her environment.   I love the “Dancing Girls.  Which are your favorites?

Monkey face orchid

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photo credit via boredpanda.com

Dancing Girls Impatiens

Impatiens_bequaertii_8509.jpg photo credit via strangewonderfulthings.com

Flying Duck Orchids

duck_orchid.jpe  

photo credit via earthporm.com

darth_vader_flower.jpe 

photo credit via earthporm.com

Tags: Exotic Flowers, Orchids, Orchid Plants, Flowers

Mother's Day Flower Arrangements

Posted by Suzie Canale on Wed, Apr 27, 2016


Mother’s Day is less than two weeks away and florists are preparing fast to amaze their customers with gorgeous bouquetsworthy for mom.  Right about now, new seasonal varieties are being packed and shipped into Boston by the thousands with the hopes that this year’s holiday will be a hit with lush and fragrant flowers.  Whether you are drawn to purple lilac that reflects an English flare or a more exotic appeal of tropical branches and orchids, designers are whipping up an incredible assortment of stunning arrangements.  Don’t wait too long, because Mother’s Day is on May 8th, so you’ll want to get your orders in ASAP to ensure availability and delivery confirmation.  It’s also wise to do your homework previous to picking up the phone and dialing your florist.   One option is to visit the websites of renowned and celebrated local businesses to get a good sense of market prices and product alternatives.  Decide what style and color you wish to purchase and reserve your floral extravaganzas today!


Top 2016 Mother’s day Arrangements

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Viburnum is a big hit during this holiday because the season is right and the flower head’s flattering green snowball appearance is hard not love!  You can buy this variety as a mixed bouquet when pared with roses, hydrangea and other yummy spring flowers or simply clump a mass of stems together for this eye-popping effect!


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You can’t go wrong with a pretty assortment of mom’s favorites and lucky for us, there’s an incredible palette of color to choose from!  Yellow, pink, green, orange and fuchsia mixes are extremely popular but soft blush tones are also often requested. Show stopping varieties such as peonies, lilac and ranunculus are so beautiful together- how can you go wrong?

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While I’m a big fan of garden blooms, I also really enjoy the power of tropical blooms and the presentation they make in my home.  Phaelenopsis orchids are one of my favorites and they come in a spectrum of white all the way to bright pink.  If you really want to knock mom off her feet this year, ask your florists about plant and cut stem options for these beauties.  They’ll be a bit pricier than other cut flower arrangements but the reaction you get will be worth every penny when you give them to her!

Tags: Mother's Day, Mother's Day Flowers, Flower Arrangements, Orchids, Mothers Day

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