Sunday, February 23, 2014

Amaranthus for Summer and Fall Weddings

Amaranthus caudatus adds a lovely cottage charm to summer and fall wedding bouquets and designs.
I have grown the long draping ropes commonly known as Love-Lies-Bleeding for a few years, but have settled on a more compact hybrid offered by Johnny's Selected Seeds called Opopeo.
The shorter drape of the flower spikes make a lovely statement in wedding bouquets as shown in these two images by Erica Serrano Photography.
Seeds will be sown in March, and the flowers will start making their appearance from July through October. It looks great with other traditional summer flowers such as zinnias and dahlias.
I like to pinch out the topmost flower as this will produce more lateral flower stems. I am planning to use these beauties for a mid October wedding and hopefully one in August too!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Love-in-a-Puff Vine for Summer Weddings

Seeds have been sown for late spring blooming plants, and now it's time to start focusing on summer plants.
One that always has a special place at Springwell Gardens is Love-in-a-Puff- cardiospermum halicacabum, (see previous posts from past summers). It's a summer vine with LOTS of delicate tendrils and billowy little puffs that add a lovely rustic
drape and texture to centerpiece and ceremony designs.
But what is really irresistible is using Love-in-a-Puff in bridal bouquets,
for inside each of the puffs are tiny heart impressed seeds
 Love-in-a-Puff is available at Springwell Gardens from late May until frost.
 I always encourage my brides to save the dried puffs from their bouquets and remove the seeds. They make a romantic little keepsake, or can be planted later to grow your own Love-in-a-Puff vines!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Growing Ranunculus in Dreamy Colors for Springtime Weddings

 So far this has been a VERY COLD winter for Raleigh, NC. 
The last time that the temps got down to 7 degrees in Raleigh was in 2000.  Needless to say the drops in temperatures to below 10 degrees have been very unnerving- I just wasn't sure if the hoop tunnels and the frost cloth would be enough to protect all those ranunculus and anemones that are growing here at Springwell Gardens.  But the plants did GREAT!!! They came through those VERY COLD nights and are on target to start blooming in the next few weeks.
Here is the stage that the plants are at now:
And below is what I am looking forward to by early to mid March!
Which will be put to use in bouquets like these...
in those lovely dreamy colors that ranunculus are known for!
It's so exciting to know that spring is just around the corner, and so are LOTS of beautiful ranunculus and other spring bloomers!