What do you think of when someone mentions to you spring flowers – particular types of flowers, colors or a certain look or smell?
For me, the first thing that comes to mind is an image of forsythia – those beautiful bushes of feather-like yellow flowers that bloom in the early spring. In fact, they are a sign that spring is around the corner in a part of the country where the coming of spring is very welcome. I grew up in the northeast, and by the time we saw that forsythia bushes were starting to bloom, we were SO ready, after a long, cold winter!
Now, I live in California, and those bushes don’t grow here. But, I can get forsythia branches, and actually use them quite a bit in my larger arrangements. They are very dramatic-looking, and so cheerful!
Next, one of the typical spring flowers I think of is tulips. Now I bet you think that tulips are from Holland! Certainly there are very beautiful tulip fields in Holland that attract the whole world to come and visit! And, tulips are sent to wholesalers all over the world for distribution to people like me and you. However, tulips are NOT originally from Holland. The bulbs are actually from Persia, and cultivation of the tulip started in the Ottoman Empire (here is the link to read more: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tulip).
There are so many varieties and colors of tulips nowadays. One of my favorite spring flower arrangements is a bouquet of all tulips.
This can be a real challenge for a floral designer, because there are over 100 different kinds of tulips! Skillfully mixing these in an arrangement or bouquet can create a very unique and engaging look.
Certainly daffodils, hyacinths, irises, and narcissus add to the list of spring flowers. Mixed together with tulips, a really beautiful and colorful display of different shapes, textures and fragrance can be shown. For a perfect spring wedding, these flowers play an essential role in reflecting that feeling of new beginnings and promise. This mix of spring flowers is a floral designers’ dream!
When I lived in the northeast, there were 5 lilac bushes in our garden. In the spring, when the lilac blossoms emerged, the entire garden would have this delicious aroma. This heavenly scent would last for at least a month, and permeate every corner of the garden. I really miss them! It is very difficult, as well as expensive, to get lilacs out here in California, and so, I don’t use them much in my floral creations. But, if budget is not an issue, they are a wonderful addition to a bouquet or arrangement.
And, what about all of those beautiful flowering trees – cherry, apple, peach, dogwood, quince, etc.? Those branches are such a terrific addition to such things as larger tall arrangements, trellises, chuppas, altars, entry ways and even centerpieces (for long tables, turned sideways, enhanced with other flowers).
Last year, I was back on the east coast in April. I had forgotten how fabulous spring is there. Everywhere there was just an explosion of color, fragrance and the feeling of renewal and rebirth. As I mentioned earlier, after the long, cold winter months of shades of gray, brown and white, this blast of color and renewal of life was most welcome!
As an observer, I was in awe, but as a floral designer, I was inspired and motivated to use these marvelous creations of nature to reflect that magical look and feel of Spring…
So, as we celebrate the coming of Spring, let’s weave together these various spring flowers to form an unforgettable web of colors, textures, shapes and fragrances that creates a “snapshot” in our minds that will last for a long, long time.