Best Foraging Practices with Rebekah Clark

As you might imagine, we are diving into all things foraging! Rebekah and Kelly are discussing their favorite go-to foraging materials that can be found both in the wild and in the garden. We are chatting about the seasons of plants and how they can be used in their various stages of development.

Floral Workshops vs. Conferences: Which One Is Right for You?

Have you found yourself considering an in-person floral education experience? If so, that’s great! We believe that continual learning and growing is key to a joyful, empowered life with flowers and personal connections and relationships are where the true magic happens. Behind your excited anticipation for the journey you’re about to embark on, there may be some confusion or uncertainty. There are a lot of different floral education experiences available to you—from one-on-ones and conferences to workshops and internships. You may be wondering what is the best fit for you.

Video: Spring Wedding Flowers for Arranging

In this video Kelly will show you all the beautiful blooms that commonly open in the springtime. Learn how to become a florist and take floral design classes online with Team Flower. Here you can even learn tips on flower gardening for beginners. We'll show you how to do flower arrangements in flower arranging videos.

Transcript

Today I'm going to show you some wonderful flowers that you can use for your next spring event. Some of these are just available in spring. Some are available year round. We'll go through the list and I'll let you know when these are usually available. 

One of my favorites and a staple that I like to use in my events is called the White Majolica spray rose. I love this because it easily transitions from blush to cream. And a lot of times within the bunch you'll have a variation of those shades. 

So if you're working with a bride that loves blush, this is a great option for a flower for her. If you need a spray rose that is a true white, you might want to look at something like princess or snow roses. 

What I love about White Majolicas is that they open really beautifully. And you can just pluck away some of those inner petals and get that great, beautiful, golden center if you would like. 

These are available usually year round. They do have a pretty big spike in price increase midsummer, whenever they're in really high demand. So that's something you want to talk to your wholesaler about. 

And maybe that's something that will affect you in your area. Maybe it's not. But it's something that I've run into. So that's the White Majolica spray. 

These are combo roses. They're really unique color and I love them. There's also a rose called camel that might be a great substitute if your wholesaler isn't able to get combo roses. 

I love these. As they open they just-- they're really beautiful and a unique color that transitions well between a lot of different palates. So this is kind of one of my staple flowers as well. 

The last rose-- well, we have two more here. This one that we're working with today is called the amnesia rose. It's a little bit lavender, a little bit dusty pink. Has some green tones in here. So it's really great if you're working with a muted palate. 

And then another one that I think pairs so beautifully with White Majolicas and also a quicksand rose is this champagne rose. How beautiful is that? They have a lower pedal count so they open wide. And it's one of my absolute favorite roses. 

This is a standard rose. Every rose that you've seen here is a standard rose. So they come with that standard price tag, which is great. 

This is spirea. And one of my favorite greens. It's great to grow in your yard if you have the space. It just grows wild and crazy. And you can cut it and it grows back fairly fast. 

So this is something that I get locally. You can also get it wholesale sometimes as well. But just a really sweet texture to work with. 

This is purple feather acacia. And it does have a tendency, and this is a little bit, to wilt at the end. So make sure that you always have this in a good water source. 

This is kind of what it looks like when it first arrives. But once this takes up some water and is really well-hydrated, this will perk back up a little bit. 

But the color variance in it is really interesting and great. It kind of goes from like a silvery tone, like that would pair well with seeded eucalyptus. And it has this dark foliage, of course. And then some of it is actually-- kind of has like a little bit of a yellow undertone in it. So I think this is a really interesting foliage to use in projects. 

This is blue Muscari. A really sweet flower that you'll commonly find in gardens. Maybe your mom or grandma has grown it or something. This is something that I really love and think of as a springtime thing. 

If you are getting this locally, a little trick-- or you're growing it in your garden. Down toward the base, if you just pull as opposed to clipping it, you can get a little bit of a longer stem for these. Since these are something that have a very short stem. 

But these are available wholesale pretty frequently as well in the spring. And that's just a spring thing. These are some Japanese Sweet Pea. The color variations in them is really beautiful and nice. 

And they smell absolutely fabulous. The scent just filled up the whole studio when they arrived. I really love these. 

This is called fruitalaria. And one of my very favorites. It comes in several different varieties. So this is just one variety of fruitalaria Here is another variety. 

And they do have a little bit of an unpleasant scent, but it's not to the extent that it would bother me. But it definitely is a difference between the sweet peas in the fruitalarias as far as how they smell. 

This is called leucadendron. And a lot of times, maybe you've seen this at your wholesale. This is a very, very common wholesale plant. But you'll probably see it looking a little something like this and maybe not all that attractive. 

But you'll see, and if you read a little bit on our blog reflexing flowers, you can just gently coax those to flip inside out. And you have a really interesting flower to work with. And check out the color variation on the inside. 

This variety is called Safari Sunset. And I think it's a great substitution for brides who might like the look of a magnolia. If they're open to color, this is a direction-- it reminds me of that shape, and the center, and everything. 

These are viburnum berries. Very beautiful, and some of them almost look iridescent in color. These are available locally and also through wholesale. 

This is ranunculus. One of the smaller varieties. And then here you have some of the beautiful hybrid Japanese ranunculus that, in some cases, are as big as a peony or a large faced flower. So those are two varieties of ranunculus that are available in the spring. 

This is an antique carnation. I really love the color variations in here. And again, if they come to you and they're closed you can just gently coax them open. I think these are a really, really lovely flower. 

Here we have some anemones. These love it in the chill, in the cold. That's something that you'll find in the winter as well as the spring. 

This is some Japanese Lisianthus. A little bit more Japanese Sweet Pea. Some tulips here. This is passion vine. 

We have a little bit of Jasmine vine. It's normally blooming around this time of year, you'll get it with the buds. But you can get it a lot of times year round, just the foliage. 

Here we have some olive. This is a really sturdy foliage, holds really well. 

And then last but not least, my very favorite flower. And something that a lot of people have commented, oh. It's all in your arrangement. Well it's my very favorite. I have this beautiful foxglove. 

So it's one of my favorite flowers and I grow a lot of it here in the garden. This is coming in wholesale but that is another great flower. So that, in my garden, it blooms from summer the whole way through the fall. And the more you cut it, the more it pops up and keeps producing. 

So those are just a few flowers that I wanted to share with you today. And I hope that you enjoyed it and that it inspires you to create more beautiful things for your brides.

Floral Headpieces with Electric Daisy Flower Farm

This episode is full of heart and electricity (pun intended), and there’s no doubt you’ll find yourself grinning as Fiona shares some behind-the-scenes stories. Fiona’s passion for living in a way that respects the seasons of the earth cannot be mistaken, and the joy she’s found in collaborating with other artists to make dreams come to life is both beautiful and contagious.

How to Grow a Debt-Free Flower Farm

If starting a full-time flower business through the traditional route of business loans and quitting your day job sounds like your kind of adventure, by all means, go for it! But for many, myself included, my bank account and sanity couldn’t afford that kind of initial investment. I’d love to see more small-scale agricultural endeavors stay in business for the long term, and I think this kind of growth has the potential for more widespread success. Buy some seeds. Plant some dreams. Enjoy a beautiful kind of life.

Best Practices for Flower Farming in New England

Flower farming in New England is not for the faint of heart. Blazing heat and humidity in the summer, frigid cold temperatures in the winter, wind, rain, snow—then throw in the occasional hail storm, hurricane or Nor’easter, and you know you need a resilient and determined personality (read: stubborn) to grow flowers professionally in New England. With a relatively short season in which to grow, season extension and succession planting are the keys to success, but learning to accept your zone and work within its natural cycles is also important. In this article, I will attempt to summarize some of the best practices for growing flowers in New England.

Video: How to Use Succulents in Floral Arrangements

In this quick tip video about using succulents in an arrangement, Kelly will show you a tip how to elongate the stem! Learn how to become a florist and take floral design classes online with Team Flower. Here you can even learn tips on flower gardening for beginners. We'll show you how to do flower arrangements in flower arranging videos.

Transcript

I wanted to show you how to wire succulents. And by wire, I mean I'm gonna stick a big bamboo skewer through it. 

I like to pull off these little lower petals. 

And then I just take my bamboo skewer and I line it up right there on the side. And then I look for the stem tape that is the closest color to the succulent that I'm using. And I just wrap it around like this. 

Very, very simple. 

For succulents that are really big, I like to poke a little whole in the top of it and then put in some-- just a tiny little dab of Oasis wet glue. Let it get sticky for about 10 seconds, and then I put my skewer in that and tape down the stem just like I did with this one. So this is ready to pop into a bouquet, or you can clip it off just like you would a flower stem and pop it into your arrangement. I'm gonna do it one more time. 

Clip as long as you can from the base of the plant. Take off the lower level petals. 

And I'll just reuse this skewer that I already wrapped. Gotta get [INAUDIBLE] of it. 

And just tightly, firmly wrap it to your skewer. 

That's it. Very easy. 

And just because a succulent isn't completely perfect, doesn't mean you can't use it. If part of these petals, if it was kind of one-sided and some of these petals over here didn't grow quite right, you could just tug that part in towards the back and then put those pieces that still looked really pretty out as, like, a silhouette around the bottom of your container or something. So you can always use the flowers. And use every little last bit that you can. 

Just be strategic. 

So there you have it. Little succulent addition. Hope you enjoyed it, and hope that encourages you to go try it for yourself. Have a good one.

Creating Tracking Systems for Your Floral Business

Whether you’re in your first month or your fifth year of business, I’d encourage you to start keeping track of different areas in your biz. After all, how do you know what treatment is required if you don’t know the diagnosis? How do you know what solutions to implement if you don’t know what areas need improving? How can you keep on top of enquiries when you’ve dealt with 30+ different names in the last month? Systems.

The Why and How of No-Till Flower Farming

There’s been a lot of buzz in the farming community about no-till farming. It’s a practice of preserving the soil ecology, sequestering carbon, and building soil organic matter. It is not necessarily new, but it is quite the shift from the way agriculture has been traditionally practiced over the last century.

Video: How to Make Flowers Spring Out of a Table

In this centerpiece video, Kelly makes a unique arrangement using a forest floor as inspiration. Watch as she pulls together unique mechanics to design an idea you can use in your next ceremony. Learn how to become a florist and take floral design classes online with Team Flower. Here you can even learn tips on flower gardening for beginners. We'll show you how to do flower arrangements in flower arranging videos.

Transcript

Up next, we have a really fun long table centerpiece display that we're going to work on together. I've partially constructed and deconstructed part of it. So we're going to go back through, and I'll show you kind of how to get up and to this point. And then, we'll keep finishing it out. 

So what we have here, in terms of supplies, this is from Lowe's hardware. We have got a piece of siding that they use on homes. And what I did, it had a lip on one side. And I took the-- I think it was 12 or 14 or so feet in length-- and I cut it in half and put them end to end so that I would have a lip on both sides. 

And I just used some packing tape to make them together-- to put them together, so I have kind of like a little tray, which is great because it makes it a little bit sturdier, you know, for lifting and things like that. But it's perfect for this type of project. The width on it is really nice. 

We are working on, this is going to be a six-foot long runner. It's going on an eight-foot table. And whenever I get it on site to install, for Amy, we're going to put just a few more little pieces of moss on the sides. And then, I have just one more candle like this that's going to kind of sit and fill in the area on that last little bit. 

So that's what we've got. It's sitting in. Then, I have some oasis foam. And it's just a simple-- it's not a fancy kind or anything. It's just a simple brick of oasis. 

And what I did was I cut it. I just made little notches. And I cut it the whole way down in thirds that'll be nice and flat. 

And once I did that, and this is kind of what it looks like once it's cut, just nice and narrow there, I took some Oasis waterproof tape. And I have gone down the entire length of it. And I just have everything taped in there to keep it from sliding one way or another. I think that's a really important thing to keep kind of everything in check. 

If you wanted to, you could use some Oasis glue. But I just really don't like glue. But some people don't mind it. I seem to get it all over myself so I avoid it. 

But you can use this tape instead if you'd like. And then, just with a couple of the leftover pieces of Oasis, I've made-- you can see here-- a little bit of-- a little bit of a level, or just a rise-- a rise here to make it a little bit taller. And that's so that my moss kind of can go up and down throughout the course of the display. So I just have one here and here and one here. 

I have three different types of ferns. And I just left some space in between my Oasis. I sort of kind of laid everything out before. And then, I just left some space as I took them out of their pots. And I'm kind of, like, just temporarily potting them in there between the pieces of Oasis, and I've got three here. 

And then, the other thing is these candles. And I just press them down into the Oasis so that they kind of had just like a little-- a little bit of sturdiness there. Then, it's going to get covered in with some moss and we'll adjust whenever it's in its final position, just to make sure everything's upright and in good shape. 

So those are the supplies that we're working with. And I have this beautiful sheet moss, some local sheet moss. Since it is local-- it came out of the woods-- I put it in some water just to hydrate it. 

And then, I also wanted to get the critters out. So that helped me get the critters. I just put it on a towel, squished it out, and then just kind of pressed through to make sure that I didn't have anything in there that I was carrying along that I didn't want to have with me. 

So that's where we stand with that. We're going to go ahead, and I'm just going to layer some of this moss in here so you can see what that looks like. I'm using some pieces of wire. And this is, I think this is about a 20-gauge wire. You could use, I think, anywhere between 18 and 24 probably would be fine for this. 

But I just made these little pins. And as I put the moss in, I just pin it into the Oasis. So the Oasis has several different purposes in this arrangement. 

One is to give a little bit of different levels. Another is to have a place where we can pin in to secure the moss without using glue. And then, I'm going to be adding some fresh flowers to this. And I wanted to have a water source for those. 

So I'm really just right now going to focus on the edges. And again, when it's in its final position on site, I'm going to go through and maybe just kind of, like, make this a little bit more irregular down the sides. But I want to leave some of that Oasis exposed right now so that I can see where to layer my fresh flowers in. 

And that's the next step. So you can see over here, I had some umbrella fern that I just took apart. And I have that sort of spread throughout. 

And then a little bit of this hydrangea. I'm going to add some more hydrangea, a little bit of seeded eucalyptus to get things started here. And then, we're going to kind of build up from there. 

I love this hydrangea because it can go large scale. I have another project for this event that is very big. And these transition nicely from very big things to very small things. 

You can see here, it has these sweet little berries and things you could pull this off, and this could become a part of a boutonniere or a corsage. It's also great to cut here in this area. And you can use this in a centerpiece, kind of to frame out the bottom of a centerpiece container or something like that. You can use it for what we're doing right now, or you can cut just each little piece off from the sides and kind of start popping those in like your seeing here. 

I just love the lacy, romantic texture that this adds. This bride wanted to have a woodsy event. Her husband is very outdoorsy, but she's very romantic and elegant. And so we're sort of marrying the two together in this arrangement. 

Probably not going to find hydrangea on the forest floor. But it does like shade or just in a beautiful garden. And you could easily find this type of plant growing in a garden where the moss and ferns and everything are. 

Umbrella ferns are one of my favorite things to have on hand if bright greens are being used in an event. Because, again, like the hydrangea, it can be used in so many different ways. You can pull it apart and use it in a boutonniere. You can leave it together and have it framed, you know, a big fleurette for something that you're doing in a large scale arrangement, maybe for a church or something like that. 

Now, with the seeded eucalyptus, we're just going to use really mainly the berries from it. But the leaves do kind of nod to this fern over here. There's a little bit of similarities there. So I might move on just a few of those. 

The goal with this is some texture. This is a very textural piece with all the different-- there's actually several different-- I don't know if you can see them, the detail, in the camera-- but there are several different types of moss within this. And that's one of the beautiful things about having something that's fresh and local is you get this variation between the browns, the yellows, the greens, something that I really love. 

You can get moss in cases from wholesalers. Generally, that's not a real tough thing to find. Price wise, it will differ, depending on where you're getting it from and all that kind of thing. But I think it's about between $36 and $40, when I've checked on it. So that kind of gives you a little bit of perspective, in terms of material costs. 

The little ferns that we're using today are from a local nursery. And I think they're about $8 each. Sometimes if you can get into Lowe's, where the piece of siding came from, sometimes you can get them in there for about maybe $4. It just depends what you're looking for and what you'd like to have for your design. 

The candles that we're using today are a birch bark unscented candle from Jamali Garden. And I just purchased two sets of those for this project. I'm going to go ahead and just loop this around. And just like I would an ordinary centerpiece or I could switch sides of the tables, except you're there, and I need to stay out of-- I need to stay out of your way. I just want to make sure I'm not overworking one section of the arrangement. 

The next ingredient we're going to add is called Pennsylvania Knotweed, something that as the name would suggest is a weed that you can find oftentimes. It looks very similar-- although I'm told it's not, you know, the same thing-- it looks very, very similar to me to Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, which is something that you can get wholesale different times throughout the year. So very big, another one of those ingredients that can go very big or very small. 

With this, I'm going to start playing a little bit with height then start jumping up and out and creating a skyline for my table. The next time that you're in a city, you should kind of take notice of all of the buildings and the outline that they make up against the sky. And when you arrange, you can kind of-- you can think in a similar way. You're putting all the different buildings together. 

And just like when you're doing a compote arrangement, you want to create a little bit of depth. In this table runner, as well, just be thinking of having it come in, go out. Most of these that I have right now are sort of centered. So with my next little round, I'm going to focus on adding that dimension, that depth. 

The next ingredient we're going to add in are just some slightly pink roses. I didn't want this part of the reception-- this is going on the head table-- I didn't want it to look so, wow, this isn't something we're probably going to find on the forest floor. I didn't want it to look so different from the rest of the reception. 

She loved the lushful arrangements, so they're full of, you know, dahlias and roses and things like that. So I do want to incorporate a few things to tie those spaces together. These roses I'm using to create little lines that help the eye travel through the arrangement. Let's see if I can do this upside down here. 

So I'm thinking about the size of the roses a little bit. I don't want to-- it's kind of nice to move from big medium to small if you can. It just creates just a little bit of a more gentle progression for your eye. And now, I'm going to set my biggest point. And I'm going to go-- roses are going to be smaller again. 

So this would be a great place to pop in a dahlia and frame-- frame it with the roses. I took just a quick little intermission so I could put a bunch of flowers in so you didn't have to watch me place every single one. So we sped that up for you a little bit. 

We put it in-- we finished up the roses and made, like, little lines throughout the arrangement. And then, I went and added this white gumfrina, sort of at a medium level in the arrangement. And then, over here, I started going for my highest moment in the arrangement, which is going to be this Queen Anne's lace. 

So you just want to make sure that you're not going really above your knuckles. And I'm just going to keep going with some of this Queen Anne's. And then, we're going to add in some dahlias. 

I think, if you wanted this to be a really light airy design, I would stop here and perhaps, even, maybe not use the roses. But, like I said, I want this to coordinate with the rest of what's happening in that room. And it's just full of really gorgeous big blooms. 

So we are going to add some dahlias in here, not a ton. It's obviously more light and airy than heavy on blooms. But I do want to add in just a few. 

I think I'm going to flip this around so you can see what's going on over here and also so that I don't overwork one side of the arrangement. Over here, everything looks pretty good to me, except there are some moss spots in the front that we'll fill in before we wrap up. OK, I'll finish with some dahlias. 

I'm just going to take note of where my roses are. And I'm going to put one in the same neighborhood, just nice and low. This is great if you have some stems that break. I actually have kind of a funny story about these dahlias. 

I don't like taking Buster whenever I pick up my flowers because he's a crazy dog. And he runs all through the car. But I just was-- I knew all the places I had to go. And I thought, oh, he'll be so sad if he was just hanging out with himself all day. 

So I'll take him with me. He loves to ride in the car. So I took him with me. And my car was completely full, completely full. 

And I thought, there's no way-- I just had to make one more quick stop and run in to a store. I thought there's no way he's going to crawl back in there on top of all those flowers. Well, you better believe he did. He was sitting right on top of my dahlia bucket. 

But believe it or not, I only lost-- I only lost, like, two stems from the whole ordeal. And those were the first two stems that I popped in here that just had a little bit of a broken neck. But oh, man, I couldn't believe it when I came back and saw that. 

Then, after that happened, I dropped an entire bucket of water went rolling underneath my seat. If that ever happens to you and lights start going off in your car-- my "check engine" light was on. The "take it to the dealership" light was on. I thought it was over. 

Then, I got to the dealership. And he said, oh, ma'am-- and I'm about in tears-- he said, oh, that'll dry out. No worries. 

So if that happens to you, just wipe it up real good. Take it and check. But don't panic right away like I did, because it might be all right. Ooh, it's a heavy one. 

So a few more dahlias and we'll be done. People have a hard time with dahlias, how to keep them alive and looking pretty. You can do them wholesale. If you're part of the Team Flower Community, there's actually a discussion going on right now about this and some good tips and advice from some other members about how to condition them. 

But I just have not-- I have not had a good experience with wholesale dahlias. So I don't-- I don't buy them to try out all of the different solutions that you can put them in. But just get them local, and they're beautiful, and they hold well. 

You still do want to keep them out of the sun, of course. But it's a much easier time. All right. I think we're about done. 

As always, I'll kind of take a step away and then come back and see if there's anything glaring. There might be something you see in the camera that you're like, oh, Kelly, you need to fix that. But right now, to me-- of course, I'm close up to it and I've been looking at it so much, looks good. 

And these candles, I don't think are getting lit at the venue. So I'm going to leave them where they are for now. But you might want, if you're going to do this, you might want to get yourself some cylinders to pop them in so that you have them covered if you'd like to do that. 

They do take one that is a little bit bigger than what you would normally get for a bouquet vase. So they don't slide down in those easy. You need to size up. 

So anyway, all right, well, that's the six-- that's the six-foot forest floor table runner centerpiece. I hope you enjoyed watching it. I hope it inspires you to think outside of the container and do something fun and interesting for your next client. Thanks for watching.

Sustainability in the Floral Industry with Ingrid of Tin Can Studios

On this episode of the Team Flower Podcast, we’re talking with Ingrid of Tin Can Studios. She is deeply passionate about sustainability in the floral industry and is sharing the various ways in which she practices this concept in her work. Ingrid is well-versed in creating large installations without flower foam, and she’s sharing a few practical tips for how others can do so as well. We’re talking about everything from water tubes to watermelons—you’ll be surprised at how creative you can be in sustainable mechanics!

Fun Floral Design Containers You Need to Try

The right vessel for a floral design can completely change the tone of an arrangement. Daffodils can look quaint in a jam jar, modern in a cube, and classy in a footed bowl. Even a daisy can take the spotlight at a regal affair in the right floral design container. Vessels are an important tool for every floral designer—and they can support or distract from the message we are working to communicate visually.

Principles of Design with Maxine Owens

Maxine Owens is proof that inspiration and passion can come from the most curious beginnings. Always passionate about botanical life and living things, she earned a degree in Zoology before beginning a career in creative design. While bringing life to retail displays for trendsetting brands and leading teams of designers, Maxine learned firsthand how creative spark, vision, and eagerness to experiment brings people together.

Brilliant Tips for Transporting Flowers from Your Farm

Flower farming takes a lot of time and energy. Sometimes after putting so much thought into your seed and plug orders, planting, maintaining, and harvesting your flowers, making sure to properly transport and deliver them may be something of an afterthought. But delivering the flowers without experiencing any wear and tear on the way to your destination is a crucial step in maintaining your reputation for quality. Dive into this article for comprehensive tips for transporting flowers from your farm.

Video: How to Make a Double Wrist Corsage

Watch this clip from the Team Flower Bouquets and Personals class. Here, Kelly demonstrates how to make a double wrist corsage (everybody’s favorite, right?). Even though pin-on corsages and hand-held posies are becoming more popular, the wrist corsage is a classic piece that every wedding designer and shop owner should have the skills to create. Watch to see a few tricks Kelly has learned in order to make wrist corsages easier and more feasible.