Local Flowers featured at SUNSET Celebration Weekend

by Debra Prinzing on June 8, 2012

in Florists and Floral Designers,Growers,How We Did It,Locally Grown,The Book Project

Hooray for LOCAL Flower Farmers!

Sunset invited me to share eco-floral design techniques and showcase LOCAL FLOWERS!

A special thank you to the California Cut Flower Commission and the Flower Growers of Monterey Bay, California. Many of them shared ingredients for my two demonstrations at the recent SUNSET Celebration Weekend.

Eddy Lehrer, a member of the audience, was kind enough to share photos of some of the individual arrangements. Which is great, because we were so rushed to get on and off the stage that no one else had the time to snap photos.

My big, showy arrangement. Thank you to Baylor Chapman of Lila B. Flowers for the loan of the amazing opaque white footed vase. Ingredients include lilies and sunflowers from Kitayama Brothers; Equisetum (horsetail) from California Floral Greens; and Citrus foliage and Cut lemon Branches, from Four Winds Growers.

Pretty in deep pink. a favorite of the weekend. The clear glass vase was on loan from Sunset's prop closet (thanks, Julie!). I submerged several "loops" of curly willow from California Floral Greens to create a nest-like structure for the stems. Then, I added pink-streaked Phormium blades, also from California Floral Greens. And for the blooms: A bounty of luscious 'Cherry Brandy' roses from California Pajarosa and deep pink dahlias from Kitayama Brothers.

I started by filling this low, wide glass container with blueberry-laden branches from Four Winds Growers. Then I inserted stems of purple Opal basil from Jacobs Farms (how fun to use herbs!). Add a beautiful Aeonium from Succulent Gardens and some plum-throated callas from Kitayama Brothers – what a cool combination of ingredients, all with a touch or more of purple.

This arrangement illustrates how to NOT use green florist's foam (aka Oasis), which is a toxic ingredient that does not break down in landfills. I started by inserting a mushoom cap-shaped ball of chicken wire into the white compote-style container. Then I added very interesting foliage – Pineapple Guava (with blooms) from Four Winds Growers. The mound of foliage needed something pretty to emerge above it, and we selected several stems of gorgeous purple Lisanthus, from Kitayama Brothers.

Here’s what we used and who grew each and every vibrant ingredient:

If there’s any chance you’ll find yourself in Monterey Bay on Saturday, June 16th, schedule a visit for a FREE, self-guided tour of the fields, farms and greenhouses where local flowers are grown! It’s the once-a-year chance for the public to meet the farmers and their flowers! For details, visit Monterey Bay Farm Tours or call 831-247-4008.

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