Friday, February 18, 2011

Camellias, lovely, but challenging...

Down in our part of paradise, this time of year we she the beautifully stunning Camellias, so many varieties and colors dot our landscape.  We are fortunate to have all of them that are surviving a particularly difficult winter.

A blog follower of this blog, Colleen, asked how to use camellias in arrangements, other than floating.  Well, then I had to really think about it.  When I was very young, my grandfather cultivated about, I would think, thirty or so camellia bushes on his property in south Georgia, USA.  They were of every color and variety.  Grandaddy let us cut the ones we want, he would wrap the stems in wet paper towel and cover them with tin foil, which we would take to our school teachers the following day.  They were little nosegays of big brilliant flowers.

But, the blooms grow at odd angles, making vase arrangements very difficult to construct, even for a seasoned designer.  So, if you don't want to float them, they can be wired or pinned to branches or willow or birch, lying flat as a long table centerpiece or stood upright in a vase or basket arrangement.  Sorry that this idea involves wiring, and removing the blossom from the stem.  There will be no water supply and the camellia will be short lived, but, aren't they all once they've been cut.  Do wish that I could find a picture of an arrangement like this.

Some flowers are just really difficult to use in arrangements.  Two others I can think of are daffodils and gardenias.  Daffodils have such a bent-head problem that wiring is almost necessary in order to get a face on view of the flower.  And daffodils are extremely short lived in vase arrangements and their growing season.  Gardenias, normally are cut down to the short fleshy stem, off of the plants woody stems.  Floating is always a popular use of gardenias, but, in an arrangement, newer longer stems need to be made from wire and tape.

I hope my suggestion on camellias was helpful Colleen!

Royal wedding tidbit for the day...  Kate Middleton has chosen her 27 year old sister, Pippa (that's short for Phillipa) as her maid of honor.  Traditionally, only younger people below the age of 15 or so, are chosen for attendants in royal weddings as bridesmaids and pages.  Lady Sarah Snowdon, daughter of Princess Margaret was maid of honor to Dina Princess of Wales in 1981.  And, a very young and mischievous Prince William acted as a page at the wedding of his uncle, Prince Andrew, Duke of York in 1986 when he married Sarah Ferguson at Westminster Abbey.


  1. Thanks so much for the information.....I think I will just float camellias and enjoy them on the bush outside.

    I really liked the picture of Prince William!

  2. I would like share some suggestion about wedding planner app ipad which makes your wedding perfect. We should be pre-planned for wedding. Wedding arrangements includes crackers, cakes, rings, dress, flowers and more....main thing is, it should be comes around our budget .
    To make all the wedding arrangements to happen at the right time, its best to use wedding planner application.

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