Delphiniums are blooming in Northern New Jersey. I’m a sucker for the dark blue ones; okay, I know no true “blue” flower exists in nature, but those dark ones look blue to me. If you know delphiniums you know that they aren’t much for hanging around in a vase in the house. Since I love the flowers and want to see them in my home I’ve come up with a solution that works for me: faux delphiniums. Now before you turn your nose up and click away, take a look below.
When you choose to use faux, you must, must, must purchase a good quality stem (fancy word for flower stalk) or no one, not even your cat, will believe the flowers in your arrangement are real. No shiny leaves. No raggedy edges. No flower colors that are not found in nature. No plastic flowers.
The best time to purchase quality faux is at the end of a retail “season.” For example, summer-blooming faux florals are selling at deep discounts now – and its only mid-July so I’ll still have plenty of weeks left to enjoy them “in season” in my home. Last weekend I wandered into the Pottery Barn at Christiana Mall in Newark, DE and saw delphiniums; at a little more than $8 a stem, more than half off, they were a real deal, particularly because after I’m finished displaying them this summer, I’ll give them a good shake, wrap them loosely in tissue paper and store them until next summer, when I’ll use them again! I bought the four stems the store had left, even though I know that I should have purchased five (uneven numbers of stems look far better in arrangements. Trust me on this.
If you are a beginner at arranging flowers (real or faux) start with something easy: arrange one color of one type of flower in a vase. A monochromatic arrangement is eye-catching and easy! Let me show you how.
Lay out your supplies: vase, floral stems, crumpled newspaper, and dried moss. Choose a vase that’s proportional to the size of your flowers. In this case, my vase (18” tall) is tall enough to accommodate the leggy (36” maximum on their bendable, flexible stems) delphiniums and not tip over.
Lay the delphiniums on the floor and find each stem’s “pretty side.” One by one, insert a stem into the vase. Start with the tallest one and place it to the rear center of the mouth of the vase. Stuff some crumpled newspaper around the stem to anchor it. Take another stem and bend the bottom back on itself so it’s a few inches shorter than the first stem; insert it to the right midsection of the vase. Stuff some crumpled newspaper around it to anchor. Grab the third stem, bend its base even more so the flower stands shorter than the first and second stems; insert that third stem to the left middle of the tallest stem. “Anchor” it. Trust me, newspaper is cheap and it works as a viable anchor when you have a narrow vase opening. The fourth stem should be the shortest so the flowers flop over the edge of the front of the vase; insert it a little to the right or left (but never dead center), whatever looks better to your eyes.
Remember, nothing is perfect in nature and your arrangement shouldn’t be perfect either. Stand back and look at your arrangement. Bend the tip of a stem. Twist a flower on another stem. Make it look real! After you are satisfied with how it looks take a few handsful of moss and tuck it into the vase to cover the crumpled newspaper.