Fake or real ? I know it's breast awareness month but that's not the subject of this discussion. I'm referring to one of my inspiration pictures, flowers. I know that I might upset some people here but in my opinion flowers and plants inside someone's home should always be real. Yes, they die. I have killed plenty of innocent little plants but I'm going to save you some time and money on my hit and miss experience with certain plants and flowers. I am not an expert by any means but I have tried out a lot of things as a novice so I think my opinion might be useful to someone else that is as well.
One of my favorite cut flowers are hydrangeas. They are full so you don't need as many when making an arrangement. The white variety is beautiful in almost any room giving a light bright feel that is great in the summer.I like them shown grouped tightly in a small square glass vase. The juxtaposition of the modern vase and the country flower is nice. Most importantly, mine have averaged a survival rate of about 2-3 weeks, which for cut flowers seems to be a long time. For late summer going in to Fall I love sunflowers, the really big ones in a tall galvanized vase is a great look and they too last a long time for a cut flower. In winter I use the classic poinsettia. They actually last too long because after Christmas I'm ready to get rid of them and they're still thriving.:) Finally, for Spring I love lilies or gerbera daisies in any color. There are some gorgeous pink and orange varieties.
One theme here is that I use one flower in mass. It's a beautiful modern look and no one will know that you did it yourself. When you start mixing flowers it can look sloppy if you don't know what you're doing. The only case in which sloppy is a good thing is when you are using wild flowers. If your children pick them for you, that's even better.
Now for the flowers I have trouble with. The orchid is beautiful. In fact one of my favorite things is having an orchid bloom as a garnish to a margarita. However, keeping one of these blooming is a mystery to me. I have done everything I've read (watered properly,misted,etc.) but somehow just end up with green sticks after a while...and they are expensive! The other flower I'd like to mention is the mum. I still buy these because they remind me of Fall and Texas football. (If you're from here you'll know what I mean.)They look great for a week or so, then get very dull and then get strange bald areas. I must be doing something wrong here but I'd like for them to last at least until I change them out for the poinsettias. Does anyone have some advice here? Roses, who doesn't like to get roses? They just don't look good for very long and they , like orchids, are expensive. If I grew them outside, I would always have cut flowers but I will never buy them for my home. I WILL really appreciate them though if my husband buys them for me. :)
As for houseplants, well, I have killed all but one. I am such a fan of this particular plant that I may never buy another kind. It's the bird of paradise. They are somewhat tropical looking but I think they go well with a lot of different styles. I have neglected it terribly when out of town, gone weeks without watering it then after forgetting if I'd watered it, watered it too much. It still survives. With other plants I have gotten strange bugs and web like things that won't go away. They have died from too much or not enough sunlight, etc. but the bird of paradise lives on. I highly recommend it. My next experiment is with cacti. I'll let you know how that goes.
Anyway, after all of the trials, I still firmly believe in living flowers and plants. If I can't have the real ones then I'll have nothing at all. Coming up in the next couple of weeks we'll discuss the grandaddy of all houseplants... the Christmas tree. Fake or real, that is the question.
Don't just enjoy flowers outside. Bring them in!