Flower Arranging with Chrysanthemums and Dahlias

Flower Arranging with Chrysanthemums and Dahlias

Many flowers such as godetias are bushy and these have to be streamlined for grace. Stem ends must be stripped of leaves, of course, but usually you can also strip off some of the side stems, thus providing yourself with large flowers and bud clusters on short stems.

So many spray types of stems, for instance chrysanthemums, give much greater value if they are divided carefully. One spray can be considerably pruned so that it gives a slender stem with only few flowers for the tall centre stem. Side stems taken from it can be arranged low in the decorations or used elsewhere in a completely different style of arrangement.

So far as dahlias are concerned, it is quite often the opposite. You can often buy wonderful blooms in lovely colours but with very short stems. You can make tall arrangements from these by using ‘towered’ blocks of OASIS, one piece on another. Dahlias go into this stem-holding medium very well. You can also use small tablet or cigar tubes wide enough to take three stems. These can be spliced to a short cane which is then arranged like any other stem. The flowers are arranged in the tube, which should be half-filled with the crumbled wet plastic. It is possible to lash a block of plastic to two canes, one on each side of it, for the same purpose. You can hide any means you have employed to lift the flowers by arranging others in front of the mechanics.

Long, low baskets like trugs suit dahlias and they also look well arranged with fruits. But be wary of arranging apples with flowers in general—the gas given off by the ripe fruit has an inhibiting effect on some kinds. Carnations, for example, will go ‘sleepy’ if there are ripe apples nearby. Grapes, tomatoes, peppers, aubergines and berries of all kinds including branches of blackberries will all suit dahlias and can safely be used.

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