Heather Lipp, J. Morris Flowers
A Peony, a Dahlia and a Garden Rose walk into a bar and the bartender says, “It’s a tie, you’re all gorgeous. Drinks on the house.”
Jennifer Morris, owner and lead designer for J. Morris Flowers couldn’t agree more with this proverbial bartender. But she has a special fondness for the Garden Rose. “There’s nothing more beautiful than a Garden Rose, it’s why painters always wanted to paint them. When you look inside a Garden Rose, you see ripples of fantastic color, the petals take on an almost feathery feel.” Garden Roses have become wildly popular with much credit given to Peonies. “Brides wanted the big, feminine bloom of Peony in their bouquets but found that affordable, quality Peonies were only available a few months of the year. Florists were trying to use Garden Roses in their place even before commercial growers caught on. Now, they are widely available.”
Peonies, Garden Roses and Dahlias have a lot of common characteristics. All three provide exquisite texture, gorgeous color selections and abundant size. According to J. Morris Floral Designer, Katie Black, “Peonies are big, luscious and dainty looking, they are so light, and fluffy, like a puff of tissue. Dahlias are a big, textured bloom available in a full array of colorful hues. Café Au Lait Dahlias, for example, are such a warm color and the blooms can literally be as big as your face. Many varieties of Garden Roses come in two, three or even four tones of unstructured color, and they change from one pretty hue to another when they open up.”
There is, though, one important distinction between these three bigger flower varieties -- Peonies are available in late Spring and early Summer, Dahlias are available in late Summer and early Fall and Garden Roses are available all year long.
Adelena Whitaker Rooney, renowned floral designer, exclusive designer for David Tutera, and founder of Fleurology Inc. shared her thoughts about the evolution of Garden Roses in florals. “Garden Roses have always been a really great substitute for Peonies during the down time for that bloom. Now, they are really on trend. They lend themselves nicely to the very flowing, Dutch-Masters-painting style that our clients are really drawn to. There are some standard roses that look like Garden Roses that are a really great substitute as well.” Garden Roses are a luxury stem, so a standard Rose that achieves the same look can be an important substitute for a bride who needs a lot of flowers or is planning within a tighter budget.
Garden Roses do work beautifully in the “swept up” or “just gathered” style of today’s bouquets and arrangements. They have that unstructured look that brides with a more rustic motif are clamoring for even in March or November. Katie explains, “It’s fun to play with the rounded shape of a Garden Rose in combination with the textures of Dahlias or Peonies -- and the antiqued colors blend so beautifully. A Garden Rose is also a wonderful focal point when used with other textured flowers like Ranunculus and Anenome.”
Adelena suggests it’s time for floral designers to start working with some of the other color varieties available from wholesalers nationwide. “I love the Juliet Garden Rose, but they are showing up in a lot of bouquets. As designers do their homework about Garden Roses, they’ll discover some of the other varieties available- there are so many beautiful colors out there.”
“We are starting to see so much color in designs. One of my favorite Garden Roses is Piano, it’s such a beautiful combination of deep red to pink. The David Austen line is amazing because they touch on the entire color wheel. They are the most tried and true Garden Roses for designing.”
According to Wikipedia, Roses have been grown in “early civilizations of temperate latitudes for 5,000 years. Paintings of roses have been discovered in Egyptian pyramid tombs from the 14th century.” This ancient floral is experiencing a lovely rebirth that allows us all to breathe new life into arrangements and designs, which is -- sensational.
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