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Color of the year.... important or not?

Posted by kitkat_oregon 7 (My Page) on
Sat, Dec 27, 08 at 21:13

I just came across an interesting thread on the cottage garden forum regarding the color of the year for 2009. A color they call 'mimosa', a bright strong yellow, referred to by one poster as 'school bus yellow'. Chosen to inspire hope and reassurance.
The question I have is whether any of you use 'fashion' as a guide to choosing what you are going to plant. If so, what publications/websites do you use or do you rely on your florists to make requests? Also, please advise what percentage of your overall planting you dedicate to the 'fashion colors' Thanks in advance. Kat


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Never. I use my own personal preferences when choosing colors. I tend to lean towards the purples and oranges and have done so for all of my life since they are what I like. Fashion changes from year to year. Personal preferences do not.


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Hi Kat,

I have to admit to not being a trendy type of person. For one thing, who has the time or money to change their house decor/wardrobe/garden every year, lol? Gee, not me. Besides, when I like something, I stick with it.

I didn't even know there WAS a color of the year for gardens, lol. But, that being said, I will try some new things, within reason. I sent for some zinnia seeds, for example, that are supposed to be the "new, hot thing". I don't even think I like them, lol, but you never know what the customers will like, so I'll give them a try.

:)
Dee


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Well this may sound silly, but I saw a program segment on TV yesterday that featured a large California flower grower. I swear that the owner/manager (not sure which) said that they chose their colors partly based on what car colors were popular that year.

This year might not be such a good one for that strategy.

ThinMan


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

I would think it is important to know what the trends are, whether or not you choose to follow them is a matter of personal preference, and part of your overall marketing strategy. As for the "new colors", you can get this info from trade mags, like Flora Magazine. I saw a lot of chartreuse, magenta and turquoise this past holiday season. :)


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Thank you all for your responses. I am not a follower of fashion either, but I think that prairiegirl has a point. As I am going to try to market more to the local florists, it might be sensible to watch what 'Martha' and the other floral folks are saying about wedding flowers, or special occasion flowers and assigning a portion of the growing space to those colors. Mind you, I doubt that my regular customer at market cares much about such things. Dee, I know exactly what zinnia you are talking about and I ordered the same one, red with lime center... yikes!! It might be such an outrageous flower that it blows off the stand, lets hope so. Thinman, the car idea is a little scary, I think I'll stick to Martha Stewart... she's not in jail again is she? :) Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

"Mind you, I doubt that my regular customer at market cares much about such things."

Kat, why do you doubt it? Are they more traditional, or is it something else? I am very interested in this subject. I am also wondering how much growers influence floral fashions by creating demand. Does anyone have a picture of that zinnia? I couldn't find one. It sounds fun! :)


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Prairiegirl, I think that my average customer (market not florist), loves the flowers, the quality and the fact that they are local grown. I do think that they tend towards the more traditional, a bouquet of flowers for the table, lovely, fresh and sometimes fragrant but not necessarily 'in vogue' and that is what I offer. I wonder if I drove their eye towards more 'fashionable' colors, used more pictures in my booth, perhaps that would cause a shift, it would be really interesting to test. Wouldn't this be a case of fashion influencing the grower and driving demand? Being such a small grower, I couldnt influence much! For me, the main reason to do this would be so I could grow more variety of new things. I should also say that I do not get requests from the customers for bulk wedding flowers or specific colors or varieties. I dont advertise such services either, although I am considering it which is one of the reasons I asked the question initially.

The zinnia is available from Johnnys Seeds. I havent seen it anywhere else. It is a very odd combination and one that you either love or hate. I think that the photo in the catalog suffers from what my mother used to call 'printerzink', and so is not quite real, but we shall see. It is called Queen red lime, by the way.

Thanks again for the input, this subject continues to intrigue me. Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Kitkat, not a regular poster here, I didn't know your question was based on your growing products for the market, but thought it was more a general question about whether we allow fashion to dictate what we grow in our own gardens for our own personal cutting. Regardless, if you are doing so, then you probably know what your local customers would want and you should plant accordingly. If your customers lean towards the more conservative side, then any of the "color of the year" plants would probably be of little interest to them. If you live in a trendy more upscale area, then what is in vogue would probably sell better.


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

This has become a very interesting thread! Kat, yes, that is indeed the zinnia. And my reaction was pretty much the same as yours - "yikes!", lol! But hey, you never know what others like, and as you said, you can't always tell from a photo in a catalog. I've found that to be very true way too often. I'll pass on a plant for my garden because the photo does nothing for me, and then I see it "in person" in someone's garden and it's really a nice plant. So, the price of a few seeds is worth giving it a shot.

Kat, I also agree with everything you said regarding what your customers are looking for. I feel the customers at my local farmer's market are looking for the same thing. Especially in a market setting, they are (IMO) looking more for an old-fashioned, rural, homey, fresh-from-the-garden bouquet, not a highly-styled arrangement. Of course, that's not to say that a vendor at a farmer's market can't have elegant bouquets (because I feel I sell some quite elegant ones and the other vendor (with more experience - and land! - than I) has some gorgeous, elegant bouquets). However, I think the whole idea of a farmer's market appeals to a customer's "back-to-nature" chord, at least in the urban areas I live around. Growing for a florist could mean an entirely different mindset (for the customer, and therefore, for the grower).

To take that a step further with nckvilledudes' idea, I don't feel the average customer at my market would really know the trends in floral arrangements and/or flowers in any particular year. They might know cars, clothes, and home furnishings, but for some reason, I don't think they'd carry that trend-sense over to flowers. I don't know why I think that, and I could very well be dead wrong.

Or, maybe because I do have some very well-to-do customers, and they are used to high-end things (again, cars, clothes, furtniture), they love the simpler, more old-fashioned bouquets because it's different than what they are surrounded by.

Or maybe I'm just rambling, lol. Sorry, I guess I got carried away and started thinking out loud! But like I said, this has become an interesting thread!

:)
Dee

Here is a link that might be useful: Zinnia Queen Red Lime


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

OK, so this is where I am at, now, with this whole idea. I like the idea of the color of the year to instill a sense of ...... whatever it may be. As such, I would grow a certain quantity of flowers that are close to said color. Create mixed, lovely, elegant or more homey bouquets that have an overall effect of that particular color. I would attempt to market these flowers as color of the year flowers, and the reasons for that color, more like a kind of gimmick, catchy, fun, different. Therefore, I would be able to assertain whether or not the customer was at all interested in this marketing scheme and so be either smarter about it next time or smarter about not doing it again, lol! Thanks Dee and nckvilledudes, ramble away, I really like the ideas. Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Dee~Oooh, thanks for posting the zinnia link, I would love to see these in person. I'm a sucker for that lime and maroon combo. I would try the solid lime with them, just in case you get all solid maroon. Please post pics of the real thing when they bloom!

When the different style echinaceas came out, I was sure they weren't for me. Coneflowers should be pink. *grin* With a central cone. Not "weird" colors or shapes. Then I tried White Swan. Then I saw a Coconut Lime echinacea, and another variety with orange and salmon petals. Maybe I just got used to the idea, but now I want to try them all. I have no idea if I'm in the majority or not. Hence the thought, how much of the desire for something new is influenced by the growers simply by growing them and using them (for ex. in their bouquets)?

Does the perception that your target market lean toward the traditional make you less inclined to try the "latest" trends? I would think one of the benefits of growing annuals is the ability to change up the offering, within reasonable limits. So another question might be, what those limits are (and how are they determined)? Do you keep records of how many stems you sell, or what exactly?

I think farmer's markets are exactly where one would hope to find the unusual, the rare, or gourmet! :)


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You may want to rethink going with all those new Echinacea hybrids prairiegirlz. I have had less than spectacular results with them regarding hardiness and actual bloom color. Others on the Perennials Forum seem to have had the same result. The old standbys of the straight purple and white varieties have never given me an issue and I can grow them with wild abandon and they reseed for me. The newer ones seem to be hit or miss at the best from my experience and what I have seen posted.

Perhaps your farmer's markets are different. In my area, they do offer unusual and rare things but the things tend to be more heirloom and traditional and not cutting edge new items.


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Kat -
I do try to pay attention, for my subscription customers and then for brides! But, two years ago, when I thought pink and chocolate "were in", most brides wanted orange!

I think I try for a good mix of all colors now, with lots of white and fillers (statice, ladies mantle, solidaster, grasses (ribbon grass), butterfly bushes, and others.

I like Florists Review for great ideas, their online site is great. Here's a quote from the issue now:

"New for summer is the return of yellow and cream, which has been in the back room for far too long! Peach is also having a great comeback!"
Paula Pryke; Paula Pryke Flowers

I think my market customers do like new and unusual things, but they do like a nice $7.50-$10 mixed bouquet.

I'm also interested in booth set-ups...how you display all your flowers! I have a very windy market and while my display is ok, I try to change it every year to make it look updated and fresh.

Wendy

Here is a link that might be useful: Florists Review


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nckvilledudes~Thanks, I (sadly) know of the difficulties, caused by a)their susceptibility to aster yellows, a disfiguring disease and b)their parentage, as one of the crosses is usually E. paradoxa, a native that absolutely requires well-drained soil. I still may try a few on raised beds. My point was that my initial reaction was not one of unbridled enthusiasm, it was more like "yikes"! LOL


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Wendy, I was hoping you would chime in here. Thanks to the link to Florist Review, interesting stuff. How do you approach the whole florist idea? Do you ask them what they would like to see, or do you tell them what you have got and go from there or do you have a good enough relationship with them that they will call you and say "I would like to see more of x type of flower in whatever colors"? Also, how much of what you see in Florist Review do you take in to account when planning what to grow? BTW, Wendy, I think your booth looks wonderful based on the photos you posted a while back, I still want to have your folding vase stand made for my booth!

Prairiegirl, I think that the perception that the market customer tends towards the traditional makes sure that I always have enough of that type of bouquet BUT, I think that it also fires up my desire to push a few new things, that's why I would be very willing to try the whole color of the year thing to jazz things up a little. As to the method for keeping track, if I come home with any bouquets, there is need for reevaluation in the content and structure.

How does one price 'new and unusual'? Do you increase price over the traditional bouquet? What foliage, filler, main flowers, do you consider new and unusual? Are you trying anything really out of the ordinary this year?

Kat


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10-4 prairiegirlz. I had several of the newer ones in raised beds and they failed miserably but not due to aster yellows. Then again we had two of the warmest and driest summers the past two years amd even though the plants were kept watered as needed, they failed to return this past year. Sort of a real bummer considering how much these newer ones cost!


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I never allow anyone to dictate me what is in vogue this season. My garden is an expression of my soul - as it feels at the moment. If it needs change - I will implement other colors, structure, design. Control of my taste and preference? No, thank you.
~Natalie


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nckvilledudes~Sounds like I may have to rethink that one then, no money to burn this year! Which ones did you try? Er, maybe I should look for you on the Perennials Forum? :)

I am really enjoying hearing all of your professional growers' opinions about how to determine what to plant. I've wondered myself how I would be able to decide.

As far as what constitutes 'new' could it be as simple as adding something to the "tried-and-true"?

I tried Jewels of Opar (Talinum paniculatum)this past summer, though not strictly for use as a cut flower. It makes a beautiful filler, but if you wait too long, the "beads" fall all over the table. I would cut the stems in flower, and also try cutting them as soon as the seed pods form. I did not experiment with that, but I will. If you're not familiar yet, the tropical basal foliage is lime green and shiny(!) with long, straight wand-like stems that branch into little bursts of the teeniest pink flowers, that look like beads from a distance! These turn into itty-bitty orange beads, it's neat. I will be getting this again! ;)


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prairiegirl, I also tried Jewels last year but pretty much failed with them as they were one of those last minute, oh I should try these, kind of things and so were forgotten and neglected. I think I got maybe 5 plants out of my tray to bloom and then the season took over and I lost them. I do want to try them again though. I am trying Ridolfia this year, a yellow dill-like filler flower. I want to grow some of the following:

Polygonum 'Kiss me over the garden gate' (love the name!)
New (I think) cosmos Rose Bonbon from Select Seeds, a lovely pink super double 2-3ft.
Cosmos Cosmic Red.
Nigella papillosa, with the star pods, gorgeous!
Others I have forgotten for now, but I will report back. None, you will note, are even close to the 'color of the year'.:)


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Kat~Are you trying Ridolfia because it is yellow? j/k!:)

Have you ever grown Bupleurum? I'm trying Bells of Ireland this year, not for market.

I have never seen Polygonum 'Kiss me over the garden gate' (Sad, isn't it? LOL), is it fragrant? It sounds lovely.

Know what I really like, but am afraid to grow? Remember Chinese Lanterns! Have any of you grown this, is it really a pain, etc. Because of that, I would consider them rare, and would buy them by the bunch. Pussy willows, same thing. I think they would be useful for season extension, what do you all grow for that purpose?

Do you consider themes, like 'ornamental edibles' for your arrangements? That is how I organize container groupings, sometimes. :)

How do you market yourselves to the customer, signs, etc?

Do you sell bunches, or bouquets, or both? I think what I'm looking for when I buy flowers, is a mix that works with where I am placing them, so fashion does enter into things on some level. Then if I could think of ways to combine them with other flowers, I would consider buying smaller bunches, or a few stems, and combining them. I don't see them sold like that around here, but I would like that!


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RE: Color of the year.... or not?

OMG I just saw a pic of Black Tip Wheat in Johnny's Selected Seeds catalog p. 151, wouldn't that be awesome in an arrangement?! How does one "grow a little wheat"??


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

prairiegirl, I selected ridolfia prior to the whole yellow thing, but hey, handy that it should just happen to be another yellow flower:) Polygonum is definately a 'country bouquet' flower. It gets very tall, can get to 10ft. It has these pretty pink drooping clusters of flowers along the stem. The nickname for it comes from the idea that it has to lean over the gate/fence because it gets so tall, where the kissing part comes in, is up to your imagination. However, with regular harvesting, it does not get that big.IMO it is not fragrant. As to Chinese Lanterns, love them, have not grown them but I have heard that they grow under the same conditions as tomatillos and gooseberries, both of which I grow, so I cant imagine that they can be that much of a pain but I may be wrong. Lots of sun and regular water, they might need a longer growing season than yours. One of the CG gurus will chime in here, I am sure.

Yes I have grown bupleurum, wonderful filler great color for any bouquet. Why are you not growing your Bells of Ireland for market? It is an easy and willing plant and will not disappoint for interest in bouquets. Self sows like crazy if you want it to. Pussy willow I have heard is also very easy to grow, again I dont know what your growing season would do to it. I am going to plant some little ones this spring.

I would love to do ornamental peppers for bouquets. There is a series called the 'Cappa Series' that have some really cool looking things, I just dont have the room this season. Do you sell container plants as well as cuts? I do, but mostly planters of mixed geraniums and other container plants. I also sell vegetable starts at the beginning of the season (my money makers before the flowers really come on) and veggies through the season with the flowers.

As to growing a little wheat, I have not a clue! I grow purple majesty millet every year and dedicate a 20ft x 4ft row to it very intensively planted but I dont know if wheat has the same kind of growth habit. Do you get multiple stems from one plant? I thought that the Panicum elegans 'frosted explosion' looked sort of interesting. Like fireworks in a vase!

Marketing myself has been a challenge. I have a large colorful banner that goes up in my booth and I post a few pictures of the garden but I am hoping to get a few brochures put together this year. Wendy has a few good pointers for stuff that she does, perhaps she will be back in here.

Well, now that we have got completely off the original subject, I will sign off. Talk to you soon. Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

  • Posted by pudge 2/3 Sask (My Page) on
    Fri, Jan 9, 09 at 7:14

Wheat is quite easy to grow in full sun and garden soil. Direct seed a couple weeks prior to last frost. You do get multiple stems from one seed. It matures all at once - it's not a cut and come again type of plant - and it's growing season is about 100 days.

What works really well with wheat is to grow a bunch of it one season and dry it for next season's (and the next) bouquets. Drying is easy, cut when the plant is still streaked with some green (not completely ripe) bunch a handful of stems together with an elastic band and hang upside down in a dark, dry area. Then next season, use the dried stalks in bouquets all summer long. I sell a 'Saskatchewan prairie bouquet' that includes orange lilies (the Saskatchewan flower is the tiger lily), sunflowers, grass plumes, Heliopsis, and dried wheat.

I don't pay much attention to the trendy colors, I like making my own combinations and try not to overthink it - it loses something when I try too hard, LOL. Last year, tho, I saw a small container combination of soft yellow (possibly my favorite bouquet color, goes with everything) and soft pink and it was just stunning. I'd like to grow something specifically for that combo in bouquets. The Rocket snaps mix, which I grow every year, has that nice soft yellow but I need to find the right pink.

Anyway, I like the idea of 'color of the year' as a way of marketing, I think it's an excellent idea. If I were to see that on a sign in front of a flower vendor as I was walking by I might think 'whose color of the year - the vendor's? the country's?' Does it matter - you've sparked my interest and I'm walking over to your booth to investigate the color of the year and, of course, everything else you have to offer.

My season is short so containers are my season extenders. I've been selling rock garden container gardens - various hardy sedums, hens & chicks, etc, planted into shallow containers and finished off with crushed rock. Those sell quite well. Last year I started selling 1 gallon containers of hot peppers and tomatoes with fruit beginning to set and plenty of gallon pots of herbs. I also had some oriental lilies potted into 1 gallon containers that I sold just as the buds were swelled but not yet opened. The container stuff sells very well for me so I am expanding on that this year.

I grew Bupleurum last year and simply loved it. I've never grown Bells of Ireland but will try this year. I have grown Chinese Lanterns - very invasive (spreads by runners) and mine weren't very tall. I thought these Pumpkin on a Stick were kind of interesting and still may order some to try.

Here is a link that might be useful: Pumpkin on a stick


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That Pumpkin on a Stick looks very promising. The invasiveness is what I was talking about with Chinese Lanterns and Pussy Willows, maybe they're too easy! LOL.

Kat~I confess I am not a market grower YET, I do so appreciate all of the feedback on this thread, it's very interesting! I've been doing a lot of research, and I do have some experience growing, in my garden and for the college I attend. I know it's HARD work, and my hat's off to all of you who do it!!

I just got back from my interview, I got a spring internship at a large family-run greenhouse and nursery! They grow plugs for other greenhouses, and sell a large variety of plants. I start in March, propagating.

We are looking now to relocate after I finish school, I want us to rent for a year before buying so we get to know the area first. Ultimately I would like to have a few acres, and grow cut flowers and stems. I do containers now, and I think it's a smart idea what you and pudge are doing. We do that in the greenhouse at school with the sedums and other succulents, they're very popular here also. I worked at an upscale nursery (Sid's) a few summers ago, many of the customer's wanted edibles, both herbs and flowers. That was fun, getting them to taste stevia was my thing, LOL.

I think Pudge made a good point about the 'color of the year' as a useful way to get the attention and interest of customers, by presenting your offerings as current, getting them to check it out, etc. Pudge, your fall bouquets sound lovely, and you know Heliopsis is yellow! :)

So, it sounds like you have a pattern(s) or recipe(s) that you then grow all of the flowers for, is that right?


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Hey, have you guys been reading my seed list?! LOL!

I am trying or have tried most of the things mentioned above. Trying this year: buplerum, Pumpkin on a Stick, black-tip wheat (or is the silver tip I'm trying??), and panicum Frosted Explosion.

*Thinking* of Chinese Lanterns, but wary of the invasiveness factor. Perhaps in some big containers...?

Have tried KMOTGG - just cannot get germination on this one, for the life of me. But, still trying again this year. I saw a bouquet once simply of KMOTGG and euphorbia aureomarginata, and it was simply breathtaking. The memory of that bouquet keeps me trying!

Have also tried Bells of Ireland, but again, didn't get good germination. Trying again this year.

:)
Dee


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Dee~I have some older seed of the BOI, maybe I should get new. Anyway, did you try chilling the seeds first? (see link) Note that the name comes from "the color (and associated marketing potential)" it's not from Ireland! See, I'm staying on topic. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Growing Bells of Ireland


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Prairiegirl, I wintersow everything, so the seeds automatically get chilling, lol. I'm definitely trying them again this year. If I can still try KMOTGG after five years (yikes - must be doing *something* wrong there!!) - then one year of failure with BoI will not keep me down, lol!

:)
Dee


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link

BTW, Prairiegirl, thanks for that link. Lots of interesting info there!

Thanks!
Dee


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Prairiegirlz, can't remember the two varieties of the newer coneflowers that I tried 3 plants each of the two varieties. After spending as much as I did with them and they not returning, I definitely decided there were other ways to throw my money away! LOL

I grew KMOGG four years ago and winter sowed it and it germinated just fine. It definitely must need the cold stratification to germinate. Just be careful where you put it as it was very self-sowing, almost to the point of being obnoxious in my garden. One other negative is that the leaves are very attractive to japanese beetles if they are a concern in your area.

Have also grown bells of ireland after having visited the country several years ago. They were sowed inside using normal conditions and they germinated without an issue. Unfortunately, they don't like our hot summers and tend to fade away in the heat like sweet peas.


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I feel like a child wandering in the desert.... what the heck is KMOTGG?????? :) I like the wheat idea, I want to try some, now where to put it?? Pudge, I tried OT lilies in pots last year and failed miserably. I think they got too hot and sunscorched so this year I am doing them in the shady green house and if they fail this time, the bulbs are going in the garden! somewhere. What were you retailing the OT's in pots for? I have no point of reference on this as no one was selling them at the market, good for me!!

I found that the Bells of Ireland did best when direct seeded and left to self seed in the same area. The resulting plants seem to be really healthy and happy. Euphorbia is a fave of mine, I grow the Kilimangaro variety and this year am planting some of the perennial types. Lovely stuff, just dont get the sap in your eyes. Big OUCH.

Prairiegirl, I suppose we now have to switch to St. Patricks day colors to stay on topic!:):):) I spent a good portion of the day today thinking of all the yellow flowers that I have coming on. Not such a huge amount, I was quite surprised as I did not count yellow/orange in the mix.

Does the color yellow make you feel more hopeful? Or reassured? I admit to it making me smile, I absolutely love yellow flowers, mind you I love any color flower, LOL. I suppose in this time of unrest and instability 'they' (whomever they might be) decided that School Bus Yellow was the color to make us all feel better. Does it? Chime in y'all. Kat


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KMOTGG - Kiss-Me-Over-the-Garden-Gate.

Just too darn long to type out every time, lol!

:)
Dee


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Dee, you would think that seeing as how I brought it up, I would have been able to figure it out. (Dope Slap, over here!!) I thought that it was going to be some elaborate Chinese Aster or something. :) Thanks. Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

  • Posted by pudge 2/3 Sask (My Page) on
    Fri, Jan 9, 09 at 23:46

When I initially read this thread, I was thinking of the 'tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree' song for the hope/reassurance angle - you know, "if I don't see a ribbon I'll stay on the bus, forget about us" that Tony Orlando & Dawn sang about many years ago. But, google tells me there is symbolism and psychology behind colors with yellow being the color of sunlight, joy, happiness, earth, optimism (amongst others). (Link Below) I found it interesting that it says babies cry more frequently in yellow rooms. Hmm, so much for the color of happiness, eh?

I also like yellow in the garden and in bouquets, I've already mentioned that soft yellow is a favorite of mine. I've never thought about why I like it - perhaps it does make me feel happier? I know in the dead of winter I'm always tempted to buy a big blooming pot of yellow mums. And I usually do :)

Of course, Kat, our zones are a world apart, and I had very little trouble with the orientals in pots. A few years back I also had a bunch of Trumpet lilies in pots and they also grew very well. I sold those lilies for $8 a pot which was probably not enough considering how quickly I sold out. But in the supermarkets you could get 2 stems of potted stargazers for about $12 so that's how I came up with my price.

Prairiegirl, first of all congrats on your new position - good for you! Second, no, I don't have a pattern or recipe - just too many random thoughts and plans, and every once in a while I try and capture one and do something about it, LOL. Every year - and I'm not at this game long - is a learning experience - this grows, that doesn't, bugs ate this, not enough water on that...I'll probably find the perfect frost tolerant pink and - you know, Murphy's Law - the snaps mix won't have any soft yellow this year or some other 'how can you plan for that' issue.

Here is a link that might be useful: symbolism & psychology of color


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Thanks Kat, I'm pretty excited that I get to start out in propagation, looking forward to it.

Your link reminded me of a paper I had to write, on the psychology of color! I went rooting in my old files. My color was orange, and stated that orange "embodies the physical stimulation of red, as well as the mental invigoration of yellow". Maybe that's why babies cry so much in yellow rooms, they are being over-stimulated, when they just want to relax. Curiously, although we exchanged papers, I have one from other students on every other color, no yellow.

BUT my girlfriend and I were remarking recently, and I just remembered this thinman, that there are an awful lot of taxicab yellow cars now. In fact, my daughter, my BIL (who lives down the street) and my next-door neighbor all have one, so I see them around a lot. We joked that "yellow is the new red"!

I feel we dismissed this idea out of hand. I wonder if the 'color of the year' is so that the car industry can unload all of those yellow cars??

Back to the question, which came first the chicken or the egg? By growing a previously unusual color (say lime green), do growers drive demand? I say Of course! since they are influenced by fashion and what's available as much as the next guy. I don't think you have to be a slave to fashion, but I do think you should be aware of the trends.


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

I forgot to mention 'Craspedia' drumstick flower, on my list of things growing for this year. Yellow, Schoolbus Yellow, no less, balls on sticks. Fun and different, no?
Kat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Kat, I tried craspedia once and liked it, although it was somewhat neglected and therefore didn't do as well as it could have. I'll be trying it again. I'm hoping to pay more attention to my garden this year, and hoping that having one kid off to college will free up a bit of time for me this year!

:)
Dee


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Marketing is visual. Percentage wise probably in the high 90s. Our market bouquets have always been bright and whimsical; therefore, I doubt we'll be changing that much in the color spectrum. This is our market niche. We're always evolving as growers; and, we have a lot of competition at market which keeps us on our toes. That is actually a good thing. In the past, I posted frequently on the Cutting Garden during the "off season" which kept me focused. Writing about my passion of growing flowers for market was more helpful to me than I realized at the time.

It is the depths of winter here in the Great Lakes Region of the country. We don't see much of the sun during this period; therefore, I thought I would share some of our market bouquets to brighten our day. As you can see, we are not afraid to mix colors that might be otherwise be considered antagonistic.

Specialty Bouquet for customer
who brings vase to market every
week during the season:
Jane's Bouquet in August

Bouquets at the Market
Bouquets at Market

At the Market
Our Banner Hangs
in the Background
At the Market

Whimsical Bouquets
Market Bouquets in July

Close Up of
Bucket of Bouquets
Market Bouquets

Gold Fish Bowl of Dahlias
Goldfish Bowl Dahlia Display

More Whimsy
Getting Ready for Market Bouquets

Sunflower Bouquets in Autumn
Sunflower Bouquets in Autumn

Bright Sunflower Bouquet
Sunflower/Statice Bouquet

Dahlia Bouquets
Dahlia Bouquets at Market

More Dahlias
Market Display Dahlia Bouquets

Bouquets in Tubs at Market
Bouquets in Tubs at Market

Here's Your
School Bus Yellow
Tinted Aster Solidago
Tinted Aster Solidago


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Flower Farmer,

Thank you so much for a bright touch on a cold winter day. Your bouquets are beautiful. I love whimsical and you have done a great job.

Teresa


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

flower farmer~Awesome! My personal favorites are Goldfish Bowl of Dahlias (what is the filler in pic above it?), and your Market Bouquets in Tubs. Plus sunflowers, the #1 flower for market!! Or at least you need to grow it, after all it is yellow. I do love sunflowers and don't care if they're in style!! :)

pudge it was you who congratulated me, thanks! I hope I can do it, I'm feeling like an old lady with all this snow.


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Nice pics!! Any way we can see them larger? I tried clicking on them and got the album page but couldn't get to see them any larger.

Makes me wish summer were here!
:)
Dee


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Sorry. I realized the original photos were too small after I had already posted. Here we go again with my repost.

Marketing is visual. Percentage wise probably in the high 90s. Our market bouquets have always been bright and whimsical; therefore, I doubt we'll be changing that much in the color spectrum. This is our market niche. We're always evolving as growers; and, we have a lot of competition at market which keeps us on our toes. That is actually a good thing. In the past, I posted frequently on the Cutting Garden during the "off season" which kept me focused. Writing about my passion of growing flowers for market was more helpful to me than I realized at the time.

It is the depths of winter here in the Great Lakes Region of the country. We don't see much of the sun during this period; therefore, I thought I would share some of our market bouquets to brighten our day. As you can see, we are not afraid to mix colors that might be otherwise be considered antagonistic.

Bouquet of Dahlias (Fresco)
Photobucket

Dahlias in Goldfish Bowl (Fresco)
Photobucket

Wedding Bouquet (Fresco)
Photobucket

Bright Sunflower Bouquet
Bright Sunflower Bouquet

Dahlia Bouquets at Market (Fresco)
Photobucket

Dahlia Bouquets Displayed in Old Boxes (Fresco)
Photobucket

Bright Bouquets Ready for Market
Photobucket

Sunflower Bouquets in Autumn
Photobucket

Bucket of Whimsical Dahlias for Market
Photobucket

Bouquets on Display at Market
Bouquets on Display

Close Up of Whimsical Bouquet
Photobucket

Whimsical Bouquets Getting Ready for Market
Photobucket

At the Market Display (Fresco)
Photobucket

Whimsical Bouquet
Photobucket

Buckets of Bouquets
Bouquets on Display

Whimsical Bouquet
Photobucket

Customer Who Brings Vase to Market Each
Week to Have Specialty Arrangement Made
Photobucket


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Now that's more like it, lol! Thanks! Beautiful bouquets!

A little off-topic from color, but two quick questions. Do you sell those bouquets in the glass vases *with* the vase? And where did you get your buckets from? Those are great. I find most buckets to be too tall for my bouquets, and if I can find something shorter, it's either not aesthetically/visually pleasing, is *too* short, not water-proof, etc. I'd love some of those little red buckets!

Ooh, I said "red". Does that keep me on topic, lol?

Thanks!
:)
Dee


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Hi all - I picked up the BHG Wedding Magazine this weekend, saw lots of pictures from prior issues, but they definitely focused on yellows/peaches/oranges and foliage! But, there are still all the bright, then whites, then seasonal bouquets.

I think I'm going to add dusty miller to my list this year for foliages.

Wendy


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Staying on the topic of yellow being the "color of the year," and hope, prosperity, etc, I've posted some bright yellow flowers. We don't sell very many totally yellow bouquets; but, maybe this will be the year for that. We can never know for certain. Can we? We have, however, sold solid yellow lily bouquets.

Such as this lovely lily which is called Golden Tycoon. Pretty. Yes?
Golden Tycoon Lilies

And, we do sell many bunches of sunflowers at one of our Saturday market. We also use a lot of small sunflowers in our summer and autumn bouquets. Note the bright colored, striped floral sleeves.
Buckets of Sunflower Bouquets in Bright Floral Packaging

Speaking of bright. Sunflowers and Crocosmia.
Sunflowers and Crocosmia

We've always used a lot of tansy in our bouquets. Sometimes it gets wild and crazy on us. NEVER plant this stuff in your garden. You will regret that FOREVER. Trust me on that little tidbit. We have it planted way out in the field where it can do it's own thing; and, the deer can come and make their nests. Whatever. You cannot kill this plant. EVER. Consider yourself forewarned. Oh, and since we've been discussing KMOTGG, if you look really close, you can see some in these bouquets. We have to strip the leaves because the Japanese beetles love, love, love the leaves.
Buckets of Dahlia Bouquets for Market with Tansy

And, of course, we must mention the dahlia. We love this dahlia. It is called 'Christopher,' and we use it often in our bouquets. It is used with ageratum and 'Green Mist' in this bouquet.
Yellow Dahlia and Ageratum Bouquet

The leaves on this Aster Solidago have been dyed burgundy. It is a very nice look in autumn bouquets. And, of course, keeping with the bright yellow theme.
Burgundy Tinted Leaves on Aster Solidago

And, speaking of KMOTGG once again, it is featured in this bouquet with dahlias and lisianthus
Dahlia, Lisianthus, KMOGG  Bouquet

Line up of our dahlia bouquets at market in bright, shiny vases. These vases are inexpensive. And, yes, we do sell them to customers. They aren't included with a bouquet purchase. However, many times customers are taking bouquets to someone in the hospital; or, just as a gift. One of our markets is in South Haven, a resort community. We do sell more vases at this market since many people are staying for a week or two at a cottage.
Dahlia Bouquets in Bright Shiny Vases

The filler in the whimsical bouquet is called Agrostemma.
I think that may have been what you were asking about prairiegirl5?
Photobucket

Otherwise, the foliage in these bouquets is called Seeded Willow Eucalyptus.
The rust colored tubs were purchased at a small department
store here in our small town. Originally, they had a pumpkin
face painted on them. I sprayed over the face with a similar
colored spray paint giving a sort of rustic look.
Unfortunately, they are not leak proof. So, we have to use
our small painted enamel inside the tubs. Four in a tub.
I have seen these tubs at Target in bright colors.
Photobucket

These are some of the bright colored buckets we use
early in the season when some of our dahlia flower
stems are too short for our other buckets.
They are sandbuckets; and, we bought them
last season at a dollar store.
Bright Sandbuckets for Short Bouquets at Market

Slightly off topic from yellow; however, is this not the most gorgeous lily? Yes. It is. It's called 'Rubina.'
Rubina Lily


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Flower Farmer, superb combos. Tried and true flowers artfully displayed will win over new fads hands down in my book!


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

  • Posted by pudge 2/3 Sask (My Page) on
    Mon, Jan 12, 09 at 19:00

Thanks for posting all those photos of your beautiful bouquets, Trish, as well as all the info. (good to 'see' you, BTW!).


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Thanks, Trish, for the additional photos. Nice to look at on this frigid day, especially after chipping ice off the driveway for the umpteenth day in a row (I've got a long driveway, lol!)

I love, love, love those vases! I'm always keeping my eye out for something that's nice but inexpensive, (dollar stores, thrift stores, etc.) but you seem to have much better luck in this area than I do. I suppose you got those vases from a local source, and not on-line?

Ah, where is spring? Can't come too early for me!
:)
Dee


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Trish, your bouquets are lovely. Thank you for posting the photos. The small ceramic vases that you use, that Dee was asking about also, do you get them from John Henry online? They have a wonderful selection, a tad pricey for me, but great stuff. I have tried our dollar store here and it is just stuffed with junk, nothing really useful. Thanks again. Kat


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Hey Trish! Glad to hear from you. We have a bunch of snow on the ground in SE Michigan but I bet you've got more. We're in the single digits this morning.

As usual, I have a question - did you tint the leaves on the Solidago yourself? Can you tell me how you do it? It is a nice look, I saw some of those at a florist one time.
Kirk


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Good morning all! I'm playing hooky today, I started off to school and the snow was coming down so hard, I went around the block and came home. It's still coming down, two hours later! My husband has been out there all morning trying to keep our long driveway cleared off. Brrr.

Thanks Trish for that info, and for all the great pics. I really like the striped floral sleeves. And your flag bunting looks like something I wanted to get last summer. We have a great wholesale supply house for vases, you need to buy in bulk and watch that you're not buying nesting container sizes.


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

So many questions; and, so much snow on our hands here in the Great Lakes Region. We have pretty much had enough of the snow and the single digit temperatures. Thank you very much. Seriously though, we have a long way to go before spring.

But, this is what I missed so much when I had "chemo-brain." I really missed the Cutting Garden.

Dee, the vases are from a floral supply house. There are so many around here. These vases are actually plastic. The vases are 8 1/2" in height, and 6" in diameter. I think we paid $1.50 for them. They don't need to be purchased in bulk. They come 24 to a case. And, keeping with the "yellow" theme, there are yellow dahlias in the bouquets!
Market Bouquets

The upside to the vases is they are lightweight. We put 11 vases in a bulb crate, and transport to market. We try to have 100 bouquets made for market. The emphasis being on "try." (And, still featuring "yellow.")
Vases of Bouquets in Bulb Crates for Market

The downside is that customers pick up the vases sometimes and hand them to us. The rim around the top cracks. Another problem we had this last season is the help we had at market for reasons beyond my control would not trim the bottoms evenly on the bouquets. Thus, we had very tall bouquets toppling over and crashing to the ground. More times than I want to think about. However, yes, the vases are very pretty.
Market Bouquets

Our granddaughters came early in the season to help. They have been making bouquets since they were tots; therefore, they are able to make beautiful bouquets. They, however, had to go back home in late July :(
Making Bouquets at the Market

Dee, I do have a fetish for vases. I love all vases. And, those little glass bottle types featured on John Henry Online are calling my name. We have used little blue glass bottles for tiny bouquets. And, sell these complete with the bottle.
Lisianthus in Blue Bottle

We also like to use European enamel buckets for blooms sold as single stem.
European Bucket of Kenora Lisa Dahlia

Wendy, speaking of yellows, peaches, oranges.....
Vases of Bouquets in Bulb Crates for Market

Oh, and pinks and yellows......
Christopher and Prospero Dahlias

This is an autumn bouquet...
Autumn Bouquet

Thank you for mentioning the bunting, Prairiegirl. I found it on eBay. It's tea-dyed cotton; and, I was going to tea-dye sheets to match. Evidently, as you can see, that did not happen last season.
At the Market Display

Kirk, The Aster Solidago is dyed with a product called Absorbit Dye from Design Master. It is available in holiday red, deep blue, ice blue, teal blue, burgundy, larkspur blue, lavender, yellow, perfect pink, purple, holiday green, and orange!! Fun stuff to work with. Helpful hint: Wear rubber gloves or your hands will also be permanently dyed as well!

One final photo -- just because I loved Canterbury Bells...
Canterbury Bells (Campanula)

Hope that answers all the questions.

Regarding my ongoing battle with cancer, I keep telling myself that lots of things in life are uncertain, but they usually work out fine. I tell myself to trust that things will always get better because they usually do!

Trish


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Trish, thanks so much for another batch of beautiful photos and for the info. I'm not sure whether to be glad or mad that those vases are plastic! Glad, because that means they are more inexpensive, but mad because I can't seem to find anything like that locally - or even on-line for that matter. Maybe I need to look a little more thoroughly.

I hear you on the top-heavy bouquets. We had one extremely windy day at market last year and I had several top-heavy bouquets go over. What a mess.

I too have a thing for vases. And I especially have a thing for blue glass - love those bottles! I also like to use other containers, such as pitchers or small watering cans, buckets, and other assorted pottery pieces. I find them at thrift stores often, but it's amazing how the customers want them but won't even pay the same price I paid for them at the thrift store! Okay by me - I just re-use them next week for a nice-looking display!

Your lisianthus are just beautiful!!! The purple/blue with the lighter purple/lavender dahlias are absolutely gorgeous!

Sigh. Sitting here drooling over these beautiful flowers while awaiting yet another snowstorm....

:)
Dee
P.S. Trish, glad to hear things are going well so far for you. Best wishes to you.


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Trish~I'm sorry to hear of your cancer.((hugs))

I'm a survivor, I was one of the first to survive through chemo & surgery in 1974. I have a sign in my kitchen that says "Pray Hard * Work Hard * Trust God". Maybe you can relate to that one! I feel that's about all you can do.

School was closed today because temps were so low here in the Chicago area. I want spring to get here so bad. Thanks again for all the summer flower pics!! :)


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

The original question was "whether any of you use 'fashion' as a guide to choosing what you are going to plant. If so, what publications/websites do you use or do you rely on your florists to make requests?' Kathy, I think you already belong to the ASCFG, and probably subscribe to Growing for Market for some of this information. The Arnosky's will be writing articles again this year -- starting with the January issue which was available online January 1. The hard copy should be arriving shortly. We are featured on a page within their article. I'm certain this topic of color will be addressed at some point; however, we'd probably like to know right now what the hot new color is going to be for the season. I've already addressed the fact that our niche is bright and whimsical; however, we wouldn't mind knowing what's hot. As far as fashion, I've kept an eye on men's ties for some indication. Seriously. Well, I guess I'm talking about wedding flowers here. And, I think whoever mentioned magenta and chartreuse might be correct. What about those models wearing the flower shoes on another post. Weren't they wearing these bright colors?

Prairiegirl5, you are just across the lake from us. Please stop sending us your weather. Thank you, however, for the message of hope. And, 1974. Wow. I am encouraged.

BTW Did someone mention that vases should not nest? Or, did I imagine that? I have some little vases from Ikea that are 4" tall, and perfect for small arrangements. Many colors. They were one dollar each. We're hoping to sell alot of them vase and all at our market in the resort community. The colors remind us of the beach. So, thinking cottage type bouquets. Ikea is a good source for inexpensive vases.

These vases are ceramic, and they nest -- as in stack.
Ikea Vase

And, those plastic vases of ours serve double duty. In late fall we use them upside down as mannequin heads for our knitted hats. I know. I am totally right-brain. Oh, and staying totally on post regarding color. One of the hats is school bus yellow!
Rolled Brim Hat


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RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

LOL!! Your last photo made me laugh, Trish! Talk about double duty! Very creative.

:)
Dee


 o
RE: Color of the year

Trish~Guilty on both counts (I brought up chartreuse/magenta and turquoise no less!) It was popular in holiday decor here in Chi-town. :)

I'm also the one that said to watch that you're not buying nesting containers, when that's not what you wanted, but not that they're a bad thing per se. It's great if you can use them! And after seeing those hats on the vase "heads" I'm sure you would think of something! ROFL


 o
RE: Color of the year.... important or not?

Trish, I do belong to the ASCFG and to GFM. Love both organizations and of course, it would have made sense to pose the question on the ASCFG bulletin board, just didnt occur to me :). The double duty vases are a hoot. Very clever. I want to investigate Ikea, I like that store. Thanks again for the photos. Kat


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