Make Arrangements Now for Arrangements Later
I’ve always maintained that one needs no reason for a fresh bouquet of flowers. It’s hard for us Canadians to keep this going on our own in the winter but in the summer, look out! This week I’m here to help you plan a cutting garden to brighten even the brightest rooms during the summer months.
The obvious cutting garden is planted in rows for maximum harvesting. The rows are spaced wide enough for easy access to the plants allowing for cutting, fertilizing, and (dare I say) weeding. Don’t be afraid to mix and match colours, textures, and shapes – this garden is here mainly to fulfill a purpose.
This type of cutting garden is disguised to look like a regular backyard garden (or front or side yard for that matter). These can be something that you already have in your garden (that lilac tree, for example) or maybe you’re planning on creating a garden with that weekly bouquet of flowers in mind. There are no rows, and colours, textures, and shapes may matter (if you care about that sort of thing). Remember that diversity is the key to warding off those nasty predators (lily beetles, flea beetles, you name it).
Good Cut Flowers
There are a few characteristics that any cut flower needs to have:
1. Able to withstand wilting
2. Vibrant colour that lasts
3. Strong stem long enough to sit in a vase and reach the water
4. Fragrant (optional)
Here are some of my favourites for cutting:
Sunflowers (a great variety of sizes and colours)
My Top Tips:
Cut your flowers in the morning or evening when they are under the least amount of stress.
Bring a bucket of water into the garden with you to place the flowers in right away
Use a sharp knife to cut flowers to avoid crushing and pinching the stems
Never store your flowers and fruit together. Ethylene gas produced by ripening fruit (apples in particular) causes the flowers to ‘ripen’ as well, aging them quicker and giving them a shorter vase-life.
Remember to plant flowers with varying blooming times to keep a fresh bouquet all summer long.