December’s houseplant of the month offers lots of showy colour:  azalea.

Houseplant of the Month for December: Azalea

Houseplant of the Month for December: Azalea

With lavish flowers and available in classic December colours, the Azalea is an  original alternative for creating atmosphere  while still being a  real seasonal classic. Azalea’s official name is Rhododendron syn. Azalea. Rhododendron is a compound of the Greek words for ‘red’ and ‘tree’ and freely translated it means ‘a woody plant with rose red flowers’. Azalea means ‘dry’ in Greek, which refers to the tough wood and not the soil, which – should always be slightly damp. As the word Rhododendron conjures up images of the large garden shrub for most people, the name Azalea is used for the houseplant.

Houseplant of the Month for December: Azalea

Care tips for azaleas
  • Azalea likes a drink. Give the plant plenty of water on a regular basis, or immerse the pot in a bucket of water to saturate the soil completely. Special pots are available for plants that need a lot of water which provide the plant with the required moisture from a water reservoir.
  • The plant cannot cope well with heat, which will cause it to droop. You should therefore avoid a position in bright sunlight or near a source of heat. The Azalea prefers a cool, light spot.
  • To ensure profuse flowering, feed the plant with plant food once a fortnight. If the plant needs to be repotted into a larger pot, it’s important to use special acidic potting soil especially designed for acid-loving plants.
  • If the Azalea has grown too big as a houseplant, it can be planted out in the garden after flowering in shady, acidic, moisture-retaining soil. The plant prefers to spend the winter sheltered in a greenhouse or shed with some shelter.
  • Regularly sprays the plant when it’s in bud.  Do not spray once the buds open.

    Houseplant of the Month for December: Azalea

The cut flower of the month for December is possibly winter’s biggest, boldest, showiest bloom, the amaryllis.

 

Cut Flower of the Month for December:  Amaryllis

Cut Flower of the Month for December: Amaryllis

The amaryllis’s petals are very unusual: they look like they’re made of fabulous velvet. In terms of colour they come in white, red, yellow, pink, salmon, purple, orange and bicoloured. There are usually 4 to 6 impressive flowers on the stem. The amaryllis as a cut flower does not have any leaves, which is why it’s sometimes called ‘Naked Lady’ in America.

Cut Flower of the Month for December:  Amaryllis

Care tips for amaryllis
Enjoy amaryllises for a long time by following these tips.
•    Select a clean vase and fill it with tap water at room temperature.
•    Add cut flower food to the water for a longer vase life.
•    Trim the stems diagonally with a clean and sharp knife or secateurs.
•    Regularly top the vase up with tap water.
•    The amaryllis’s stem is sometimes too weak to bear the weight of the flowers: a stake inserted in the stem is then the solution to keep it properly upright.
•     Amaryllises will last longer in a cool spot; do not place them in the sun or close to a source of heat.

Cut Flower of the Month for December:  Amaryllis

Orchids are always among the popular flowering houseplants, which makes them an easy choice for houseplant of the month for November.

Houseplant of the Month for November:  Orchid

Houseplant of the Month for November: Orchid

Orchids make up one of the largest plant families. There are more than 20,000 known species, and new ones are still being discovered regularly. In the warmer regions such as the tropical rainforest orchids often grow on trees, branches or twigs with their roots in the air. These are called epiphytic orchids. Epiphytes are plants that grow on something without drawing nutrients from it. For cultivated specimens this means that they need little water and are grown on special airy potting mixtures. This replicates nature as closely as possible.

Houseplant of the Month for November:  Orchid

Care tips for orchids
  • The care depends on the place of origin and growing style. However, most Speciality orchid species prefer room temperatures and need a light spot out of direct sunlight.
  • Orchids cannot cope with wet feet, and are often supplied in some bark as a support rather than soil. In both cases the plant should be immersed in tepid water with some orchid food for half an hour once every 10 to 14 days and left to drain thoroughly.
  • When the plant has finished flowering, the exhausted stems can be cut off just above the soil. If the plant is left in a cool spot during the rest period, some patience can result in new shoots from which new stems will emerge. Re-flowering varies according to species. Hence a Zygopetalum can flower up to 3 times a year, whilst Oncidium will only re-flower after 9 to 12 months.
  • Houseplant of the Month for November: Orchid

One of the prettiest, most versatile, and dependable of cut flowers is the flower of the month for November:  lisianthus.

Cut Flower of the Month for November:  Lisianthus

Cut Flower of the Month for November: Lisianthus

There is an enormous choice on offer: the lisianthus comes in white, green, blue, pink, lilac, purple and salmon. Some flowers even have petals with multiple colours. The lisianthus also comes in many forms: single and double flowered, large and small flowered and even with fringed petals. If that wasn’t enough, new forms are constantly being added! Apart from being colourful, the lisianthus’s petals are also very soft and delicate.

Cut Flower of the Month for November:  Lisianthus

Care tips for lisianthus
Enjoy lisianthus for a long time by following these tips.
•    Select a clean vase and fill it with tap water at room temperature.
•    Add cut flower food to the water for a longer vase life. This has a very positive effect on the vase life for lisianthus in particular.
•    Cut or trim the stems diagonally by 3 to 5 cm with a sharp and clean knife or secateurs.
•    Make sure there are no leaves hanging in the water.
•    Do not place lisianthus in a draught, in full sun or near central heating.
•    Regularly top the vase up with tap water; lisianthus flowers drink a lot because they have thin petals, as a result of which they evaporate a lot of moisture.

Cut Flower of the Month for November:  Lisianthus

Probably the single most popular, longest lasting, most versatile cut flower:  chrysanthemums!

Cut Flower of the Month for October:  Chrysanthemum

Cut Flower of the Month for October: Chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemums like making friends. They are easy to combine with other fabulous flowers such as roses and anthuriums to create a cheerful and extravagant bouquet. You can make the overall effect more robust by placing it in a rugged pot.

Cut Flower of the Month for October:  Chrysanthemum

Care tips for chrysanthemums
Enjoy your chrysanthemums for at least 2 to 3 weeks with the following tips.
•    Select a clean vase and fill it with tap water at room temperature.
•    Add cut flower food to the water for a longer vase life.
•    Cut or trim the chrysanthemums’ stems diagonally by 3 to 5 cm with a sharp and clean knife or secateurs.
•    Make sure there are no leaves hanging in the water.
•    Do not place chrysanthemums in a draught, in full sun or near central heating.
•    Regularly top the vase up with tap water.
•    Don’t place chrysanthemums near a fruit bowl. Fruit emits ethylene gas which will cause the flowers to age more rapidly.

Cut Flower of the Month for October:  Chrysanthemum

This month’s houseplant is actually a whole category of plants, and they couldn’t be more fashionable:  hanging plants!

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The eye-catching feature of flowering hanging plants is obviously the flowers, which lend an air of mystery to these houseplants. Ideal to use as a living flower curtain or flowering room divider, the surprising appearance of this range is a good match with customers who like unusual shapes and are looking for trendy plants.

Houseplant of the Month for September: Hanging Plants

Care tips for customers

  • Green and flowering hanging plants with thick fleshy leaves need proportionally less water thanks to their succulent properties. Other species need some water every couple of days because the leaves are thinner and more fragile.
  • Most flowering hanging plants require a warm, light spot, but prefer not to hang in bright sunlight. As a rule of thumb, the more flowers there are on the plant, the greater the need for light, and the lighter/more variegated the leaves the greater the need for light as well.
  • Water the plants regularly with water which is not too cold. The soil should not be allowed to dry out, but nor should there be excess water. Spray the leaves of hanging plants with leaves regularly – don’t spray the flowers.
  • Some plant food once every 2 to 4 weeks is a good idea to keep the plant looking good for a long time. Remove exhausted flowers and old leaves, and cut the tendrils back when they get too long. Flowering hanging plants are purely for decoration and not for consumption. Houseplant of the Month for September: Hanging Plants

 

Lots of colour and texture from September 2016’s cut flower of the month:  the dahlia!

Cut Flower of the Month for September:  Dahlia

Cut Flower of the Month for September: Dahlia

The dahlia’s most eye-catching feature is its petals: sometimes evenly coloured, but often noticeably bright with spots or lines. Some flowers have a single row of petals, others have dozens – this fabulous flower has an incredible number of colour and shape variations! For example, the petals can be round, elongated or rolled. Dahlias can reach a height of 1.5 metres and a flower diameter of more than 20 cm. In other words, they are definitely eye-catching!

Flower of the Month for September:  Dahlia

Care tips for customers
•    Select a clean vase and fill it with tap water at room temperature.
•    Add cut flower food to the water for a longer vase life.
•    Cut or trim the stems diagonally by 3 to 5 cm with a sharp and clean knife or secateurs.
•    Make sure there are no leaves hanging in the water.
•    Do not place dahlias in a draught, in full sun or near central heating.
•    Regularly top the vase up with tap water, because dahlias are thirsty.
•    Don’t place dahlias near a fruit bowl. Fruit emits ethylene gas which will cause the flowers to age more rapidly.

Cut Flower of the Month for September:  Dahlia

 

modern wedding table inspiration

modern wedding table inspiration

 

Vintage wedding style has ruled for nearly a decade at least, but wedding table decor is currently enjoying a more contemporary look.  Botanical, industrial, and minimalist looks are accented with lots of foliage, pops of colour, and copper and rose gold metallics.  Lots more modern table inspiration on our Pinterest board!

The flower plant of the month for August is a perennial favourite due to it’s huge blooms and range of colours:  hydrangea!

Cut Flower of the Month for August: Hydrangea

Cut Flower of the Month for August: Hydrangea

 

In the first half of the year you see red, pink, purple, white, green and blue hydrangeas, as well as hydrangeas which combine several colours. In the second half of the year there are the ‘colour-changed’ flowers. These hydrangeas have a green/dark red/brown tone and are good for drying. These are actually flowers that the grower has left to develop in the greenhouse.
There’s also plenty of choice when it comes to shape. You can choose single or double flowered varieties, globe-shaped hydrangeas, hydrangeas with small flowers in the middle and large petals on the edge (edge bloomers) or hydrangeas with a plume shape.

Cut Flower of the Month for August:  Hydrangea

Care tips for customers
•    Select a clean vase and fill it with tap water at room temperature.
•    Add cut flower food to the water for a longer vase life.
•    Cut or trim the stems diagonally by 3 to 5 cm with a sharp and clean knife or secateurs.
•    Make sure there are no leaves hanging in the water.
•    Do not place hydrangeas in a draught, in full sun or near central heating.
•    Regularly top the vase up with tap water; hydrangea flowers drink a lot because they have thin leaves and thin petals, as a result of which they evaporate a lot of moisture.
•    Don’t place hydrangeas near a fruit bowl. Fruit emits ethylene gas which will cause the flowers to age more rapidly.

Cut Flower of the Month for August: Hydrangea

wedding flower inspiration using olive

wedding flower inspiration using olive

This year’s big wedding flower trend is lots and lots of foliage, including the beautiful silvery, long-leafed, light green beauty that is olive.  Perfect for all those little details, looks perfect in garlands, on cakes, even a little sprig on your dinner plate.  Check out our Pinterest board for more wedding flower inspiration using olive!