Alstroemeria flowers, which resemble clusters of miniature lilies, bloom in late spring and early summer in an array of colors – orange, pink, purple, rose, red, yellow and white – many of them with striped petals. Many hybrids and about 200 cultivars have been developed over the years, making them a florist’s staple for bouquets
HOW TO HELP CUT FLOWERS LAST
Keeping cut flowers fresh for weddings is especially demanding; they have to look good through a couple of hours of photography, as well as the wedding and reception. The key is proper hydration,
- Harvest flowers two days before the event, and choose blooms that are about three-quarters open. Do it early in the day while the air is still cool; plunge the stems immediately into a bucket of cool water.
- Recut stem ends under water, then keep stems immersed in a bucket of water for 24 hours in a cool, shaded place. Use water alone or add a drop of bleach to keep it clean longer. If you’re working with hollow-stemmed flowers such as dahlias or mignonette, invert them one at a time, fill the stem with water, stop up the end with your finger, then plunge the stem upright back into the bucket.
- Arrange flowers in a water-filled vase for maximum life. Or arrange them in floral foam, which provides more design control but sacrifices some vase life.