One of my favorite things about late summer is how most of the plants and flowers in the yard are in full bloom. I love being able to grab a recycled jar, step outside of my door, and wander around the yard snipping flowers and branches here and there to make backyard bouquets. While I adore a good rose bunch as much as the next person, I really love the wildness of an arrangement of unconventional flowers, greenery and branches. I’d rather have someone give me fresh snipped zinnias from their front yard over grocery store flowers any day of the week! When I create arrangements, I’ll try all kinds of combinations such as a big, white hydrangea flower, hosta leaves, and birch tree branches. I even love cutting volunteer maple tree seedlings from my yard and using them when I can.
My mom is a floral designer, and I love how she uses her artistic eye to put flowers in a pretty arrangement. She has some mad skills, and I’ve learned a lot from her. I asked if she would lend us her expertise, and give some advice as to the best way to put together a backyard bouquet.
Some of her expert tips for awesome backyard floral arrangements are:
-Pick the flowers early in the morning and put them immediately into a bucket of water
-Pull off any lower leaves that will sit below the waterline, or they will decay and ruin the water
-Use weeds such as Queen Ann’s Lace, and Hosta as easy fillers, and around edges
-Add things such as branches, pods and grasses for height
-Make sure to turn your arrangement as you work so you don’t have only one side that looks great.
One tip she told me a long time ago that I still use as I am building my arrangement, is to pretend I am adding my flowers in a bubble or mound shape. I put tall elements in the center, and work my way down to the base in height. Now I get more abstract–ish with my arrangement, but a good mound is an easy way make an arrangement that is symmetrical, and pleasing to the eye.
Here’s a printable for you of some cutting flowers and plants. These aren’t all of them, but they are some of my favorites. Some are annuals, and some are perennials, but that also depends on where you live and what will grow. You may find there is a substitute for something on this list that is similar in your area.
In part 2, you can see some backyard bouquets I’ve put together from plants around my yard, and I’ve even labeled the flowers I’ve used so you can recreate them as well!
A few years ago, I planted items for a winter cutting garden, you can see that post here.