Wedding Florals of Late Summer & Early Fall

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Happy 1st of August! We're halfway through the week and closer to the weekend... Yes!!! You know it's going to be amazing week when a great friend stops by to share some knowledge with you :) Today, i'm very grateful that Brooke Wetzel, owner of Los Angeles based The Plum Dahlia took some time out of her busy schedule to share some thoughts on her favorite flowers of the season. I'm hoping Brooke will consider making some regular "visits" to add some bloom into our fabulous, wedding-inspired lives!

The following is via Brooke:

We're about to enter into the season that Southern Californians are spoiled with, Late Summer. We usually enjoy warm days and balmy nights well into October and that presents joys and challenges when choosing blooms for your late Summer/Early Fall wedding. With many outdoor weddings and receptions still happening, heat and direct sun during outdoor weddings and receptions are still a concern for planners and florists and finding the prettiest and hardiest flowers for your event can be challenging. 

That said, these are my top 3 blooms for this mini-season that I think lend the best beauty, value and seasonality for your late Summer-early Fall wedding.

Roses, Stock, Mums, Aster
Bouquet by: The Plum Dahlia

1. Roses
Easily obtainable in a myriad of colors, Roses make a great base to start planing your wedding flowers around. Available in nearly every imaginable wedding color in varying hues, Roses can easily act as your "pop of color" in a sea of ivory or another neutral. Roses do very well in the mild heat of late Summer and when arranged well, won't show signs of wilting. 

Think Roses are too stuffy or boring? Today's varieties aren't the same Roses of even just 20 years ago. Growers are reacting to trends in the wedding industry, breeding and growing Roses with double petals (to mimic Peonies), massive varieties of new hues (both modern and classic) and blooms in varying sizes (very large to small "Sweetheart" blooms). 

Roses, when priced per stem, are in the midrange of the most popular wedding flowers. They still exude feelings of luxury and can easily make the leanest floral budget feel rich when used well.

Stock Flowers
by: Bunches UK

2. Stock Flower
This is the work horse of any florist's wedding arsenal and for good reason. Stock is hardy, inexpensive and comes in classic wedding colors. White stock makes a great alternative to Hydrangea when weather or budget don't permit and most people are surprised to find out that they're not Hydrangeas! Available in a palette that is quickly growing from year to year, Stock is by far my favorite filler flower that sometimes outshines the other blooms around it. 

So what makes it a great late Summer bloom? It's thick, hardy stock can hold water well and makes for a great cut bloom for bouquets. Wilting is minimal, even in direct sun, making it a low-loss flower, meaning when I buy 30 stems, I'll use all 30 minimizing overhead which equals savings for Brides. It's also available year-round in varying qualities with Summer-Fall being the peak season for this fluffy, sweet bloom.

Orange, Purple, Burgundy Dahlias
Bouquet by: Sada's Flowers

3. Dahlias
Dahlias have to be the biggest up-and-coming flower I've seen in the 3 years I've been a professional florist. The colors, texture and richness of this humble bloom make it one of my personal favorites (The Plum Dahlia!). It goes well from elegant hotel weddings to backyard family gatherings without putting you over budget. Its peak season is August through November, making its first appearance around April-May. The colors get darker and richer as the season progresses, so if you're planing deep purples, oranges or reds, September is a gorgeous month for Dahlias. 

Dahlia generally do well in heat, but I wouldn't recommend them in direct sunlight. Their petals are delicate and can show wilting after a few hours. If you're choosing your own flowers, look for thick, hardy stems with large blooms if you must have them in limited direct dun. The wide stems will allow them to direct water to the bloom more easily than a skinny stem. 

Dahlias can seem pricey per stem, but the overall cost is low during their peak season and the market is flooded with inventory in varying shades, sizes and types. When used well, Dahlias can be that unusual flower that brings a sophisticated edge to a simple wedding. 

Hopefully this little list was helpful and maybe gets your Google finger itching to see how they can be used at your event. Late Summer is a beautiful season to be married. The sunsets are longer, the glaring heat of July has passed and the floral harvest is rich!


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