Vase trends go minimalist
Leaves are being sacrificed for dramatic effect, says Peter
WHILE watching a floral artist demonstrating his skills at the Trade Fair Aalsmeer 2018 in the Netherlands, I asked why all the leaves were stripped from the stems. He told me the eye had to be attracted and focused on the flower, and while leaves were fine in the garden, they were a distraction in his works of art.
While I accepted his explanation, I must say I hate to see lovely healthy leaves removed and stout stems cut back to stumps – even worse when cut flowers are hung upside down. When time and skill have been spent growing a flower well, I like to see it complete and in a natural position. This Trade Fair held every November is a mecca for pot-plant and cut-flower growers, buyers and florists. The quantity of cut flowers was mesmerising, as was the quality, with thousands of perfect rose blooms on metre-long stems on single stands.
Visitors to such events are looking for trends, and clearly this year one aim was to make flower arranging easy and acceptable to homeowners around the world. Exhibitor after exhibitor had cut flowers staged in an arrangement of one or two blooms in either a vase or a small decorative container.
One gerbera grower had found a small vase with a sloping base so the individual flower was tipped forward to face the onlooker. There were also tips aplenty. For example, I was not aware that chemicals in flower-arranging foam shortened the life of cut gerberas. If used, the foam needed to be soaked for 24 hours and rinsed before use. Further, one or two drops of bleach in the water for gerberas were needed to prevent bacteria blocking the cut stem and gaining up to three weeks’ shelf life.
“Thousands of perfect rose blooms on metre-long stems”
The tall, stout stems of these gerberas indicate lasting quality Vases with a sloping base tip flowers forward