Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Add meaning to your Wedding with Color, Fragrance and Flowers as Symbols of your Love

Choosing Flowers for Your Wedding

Think of flowers that you have loved all your life; flowers that are meaningful to you. A fragrance, a favorite flower of Grandma's. Let memories serve as a starting point.

Now consider the style of wedding you are having. Formal might involve lilies or calla lilies.

For a country feel touches of blue say it all, with a diverse set of smaller blooms like you'd find in a meadow. Examples would be larkspur, yarrow, scabiosa, shasta daisy and Black-Eyed Susan.

Contemporary weddings use love lies bleeding, celosia, astilbe and greens with character and texture. Seed pods of nigella and poppies are often used.

Locally grown garden flowers can be especially meaningful. Bear in mind they can be unpredictable due to weather variability. Be open to different flowers with the same color or texture. They are all beautiful.

If you are just now setting a date, consider the flowers you love. Peonies are available only in late spring, hydrangea only in late summer, sweet peas in July only in our climate. Spring such as April and May will limit you to lilacs and spring bulbs in the High Country.

If you are growing your own, you will need lots of plants. Dahlias for example put out just a few bloom per week. A bridal bouquet of just dahlias might have 10 dahlia blooms. A mixed bouquet might have 50 or more stems.

Cut your flowers the day before the wedding, early in the morning, move immediately to floral preservative and store in a cool, shady place until you start arranging.

The Meaning of Flowers; use them to Symbolize your Love

Add the ancient tradition of the 'meaning of flowers' to your wedding.
You can even add a thoughtful note to your groom and guests as to the meaning of the flowers you've chosen for them.

I've added a list of flowers we grow and their traditional meaning.
  • Allium - good fortune
  • Anthurium/snapdragon - attraction
  • Bachelor button - love
  • Basil - love, wealth
  • Bleeding Heart - love
  • Aster - beginnings
  • Catnip - beauty, happiness
  • Chrysanthemum - hope
  • Clematis - artfulness, mental beauty
  • Columbine - courage, love
  • Daffodil - chivalry
  • Daisy - innocence
  • Feverfew - protection
  • Gladioli - natural grace
  • Honeysuckle - bonds of love
  • Hydrangea - boastful
  • jasmine - good luck
  • Lavender - devotion or love at first sight
  • Lily - virtue
  • Nasturtium - jest
  • Mint - money, love, lust
  • Pansy - thoughtfulness
  • Peony -  romance and prosperity
  • Poppy - dreams
  • Ranunculus - charm
  • Rosemary - remembrance
  • Sunflower - power
  • Sweet Pea - lasting pleasure
  • Thistle - strength
  • Tulip - hopeless love
  • Yarrow - courage, love
  • Zinnia - absence

 Fun Flowers for Fragrance - you will forever associate these with your wedding day
  • Dill
  • Lavender
  • Rosemary
  • Narcissi
  • Oriental lily - strong
  • Chrysanthemum - peppery
  • Dahlia - peppery
  • Lilac - sweet
  • Sweet Pea - sweet
  • Peony - sweet
  • Phlox - sweet
  • Garden Rose - sweet (regular florist roses have little or no fragrance)
Symbolize with Color:
  • Blue - trustworthy, dependable, and committed, the color of the sky and the ocean, blue is perceived as a constant in our lives.
  • Green - the color of nature, fertility and life, self-respect, well-being, and balance
  • Yellow - shines with optimism, enlightenment and happiness. Shades of golden yellow carry the promise of a positive future.
  • Orange - is fun and flamboyant and radiates warmth and energy. Terra-cotta, peach and rust have a broad appeal.
  • Red - is the color of passion and commands attention. Using this color as an accent color will immediately draw everyone's gaze to a particular decorative element.
  • Pink - ia youthful, fun and exciting, while vibrant pinks have the same high energy as red. Pink is the color of happiness and is regarded as lighthearted.
  • White - projects purity, cleanliness and neutrality. It also indicates a fresh start, innocence and simplicity.
  • Purple - balances the stimulation of red with the calm of blue. With mystical and royal connotations, purple is a color favored by creative or eccentric types.

Friday, February 10, 2012

More on Edible Flowers

Whether a garnish or integral part of your dish, flowers add fun, fab and a bit of history to any dish. 
"Edible flowers can be candied; frozen in ice cubes and added to beverages; made into jellies and jams; used to make teas or wines; minced and added to cheese spreads, herbal butters, pancakes, crepes, and waffles. Many flowers can be used to make vinegars for cooking, marinades, or dressings for salad."
To make sure you don't go astray with garden or wildflowers doubt check your culinary choices with NCSU poisonous plants site.

Other flowers to not eat: those from florist, nurseries and garden centers. These carry a high risk of pesticides untested for human consumption. 

Our flowers are not sprayed with any sort of inorganic pesticide or fungicide. Nothing systemic is ever used.

These blooms and petals can be used to garnish your plates, freeze in ice cubes, decorate your cake, salad or napkins: clary sage, milkweed, feverfew, garlic chives, garlic flowers, gladiolus, hyssop, hollyhock, peony, mint, calendula, viola, lavender, rosemary, rose, tulip, dianthus, marigold, basil, bachelor's button, chrysanthemum, dahlia, nasturtium, and lilac.

Easy edible herbs: Borage - blue, Catnip- silver blue green, Chamomile-white daisy, Anise Hyssop - lavender or white.

If you are growing edible flowers for yourself make sure you do not use any sprays, even those labeled organic.

cinnamon basil
http://whatscookingamerica.net/EdibleFlowers/EdibleFlowersMain.htm excellent page covers flower infused tea, crystallized edible flowers, flower blossom ice cubes and recipes and a more complete list of flowers and herbs to be used as garnish.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Red and Orange Flower Bar Chart

I can e-mail this to you in Numbers or Excel for easier reading.

Viburnum Cardinal Candy is the last listing and missing at the bottom are Zinnias mid-July through frost.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Now offering a Worm Factory® 360- for Worm Composting

Shady Grove Garden is now dealer of the Worm Factory® 360 (with worms included a $30 value.)
No shipping cost. Pick -up here at the nursery. There is now better time than now to start
 vermi-composting. Your total cost 139.95 plus tax.
Product Dimensions: 18 x 18 x 15 inches ; 11 pounds

Product Description

Composting with worms allows you to turn kitchen scraps, paper waste and cardboard into nutrient-rich soil for your plants. The Worm Factory 360 composting system makes the entire process quick and easy. With a thermo siphon air flow design, the Worm Factory 360 increases the composting speed. Now you can produce compost much faster than traditional composting methods. Master Gardeners agree, worm castings are one of the richest forms of fertilizer that you can use. The Worm Factory 360 can be used indoors or outdoors allowing year round production. Now composting is no longer limited to backyards. The Worm Factory 360 is odorless making it great for apartments, kitchens, garages, porches and more. Simply add a handful of worms and your organic waste to the bottom tray. The worms will start processing the food. Once the bottom tray is filled add another tray. The worms migrate upward to the newest food source leaving the bottom tray full of nutrient-rich compost. As waste is broken down, moisture filters through the system, taking nutrient-rich particles with it. This makes it possible to harvest organic liquid fertilizer right from the spigot. 20 year warranty.