Friday, June 24, 2011

World Association of Floral Arrangers-Boston 2011

Last week I was delighted to attend the The World Association of Flower Arrangers event in Boston...and what a show it was! WAFA holds a show like this only every 3 years, and always in a different country. The last show had to be cancelled due to political unrest-so after waiting 6 years, floral arrangers around the world were chomping at the bit for the show dubbed This Glorious Earth! And attend they did- over 600 exhibitors from over 35 countries! Over the course of 5 days, many events were planned. I attended on Saturday, and we were treated to the sight of over 350 flower arrangements! Needless to say, these were not your typical Daisies-in-a-Coffeecup type designs.

Some were quite complicated, using exotic blooms, like this one,
filled with Anthurum, Midolino sticks and Heliconia.

Others were deceptively simple, like this clever play on water pouring from a pitcher, utilizing not much more than Lily grass and Hypericum berries.

Some hung from the ceiling from giant spheres.
The use of Hapene was prevalent-
(skeletonised tenax leaves from New Zealand)

Some countries had a representative arrangement.
France's was particularly evocative, while using very few elements.

Some were minimalist.
Just a few Callas and a beautiful piece of driftwood here.

Others were stuffed full.
Roses! Carnations! Stock!
This list goes on...

There were tours, demonstrations, lectures and awards ceremonies. Sunday's event was the highlight...5 European masters showcased 35 gigantic designs on the stage of Boston's magnificent Wang Center, each more eye-popping than the next. And certainly a good example of how different everyone's design style is!

The next show will be held in Dublin, Ireland in 2014. Definitely worth the trip!
In the meantime, watch for the next BloomersBlog posting with more photos from WAFA!

Bloomers Floral Design
122 South Front St.
Wilmington, NC 28401

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Year of the Zinnia

The National Garden Bureau recently announced it's selection of the Zinnia as Flower of the Year. The organization has selected a flower and vegetable for this honor every year since 1982, and helps showcase varieties that are versatile, easy to grow and widely adaptable throughout the country. The name Zinnia is derived from the German botanist Johann Gottfried Zinn (1727-1759)

Not familiar with the Zinnia? Originally from Mexico, it now can be found in gardens throughout the country, and are generally started from seed. In milder areas, they may re-seed the following year-a bonus! The beautiful coloration on this variety reminds me of a Mexican sombrero.

Butterflies love Zinnia- another bonus! You'll have your choice of colors if you plant Zinnias-the number of varieties available is countless! They can be as small as a quarter, and go up from there. One variety I particularly love is called "Cut and Come Again", as the more flowers you cut, the more flowers are produced. What's not to love?

Love a 'splashed" flower?
Then look no further than the Candystripe Zinnias.

Maybe you've composed an all white-and-green garden?
Then Zinnia "Envy" is the one for you!
This chartreuse color makes everything around it just pop.

Zinnias are easy to start from seed, and are drought tolerant-which makes them a great choice for our hot southern gardens. Though they are prone to mildew, it's easily controlled. (mix baking soda and water, then spray onto plants). And with all the varieties available, you're sure to find a color that works in your garden or container!

Wondering what the 2011 Vegetable of the Year is? Why, it's the tasty Tomato!

Bloomers Floral Design
122 South Front St.

Wilmington, NC 28401