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An unusual bouquet!

  • An unusual bouquet!

One of my clients has a fairly large Hydrangea arborescens 'Annabelle', and a week or two ago, she asked me to cut her 20 or so of the blossoms, with the longest stalks I could find.

Her intention was to dry them for use indoors over the winter - and what a good idea! As you can see, each flower head is larger than my secateurs, and they make an impressive display.

The flowers go brown once they dry, but like many Hydrangea blooms, once they are dry they stay intact for many months, and can add height and bulk to dried flower displays.

It's not too late to do this yourself: nip out now, before the winds of autumn batter the plants too much, and cut the longest stems you can find, trimming off any side stalks or forks to get the single longest stem. Then leave them somewhere warm and dry, and for the best results, hang them upside down, spaced out: this keeps each flower head separate and rounded.

I am confidently expecting to be told to do the same to the Physalis - Chinese Lanterns - next week, and of course there is always our dear friend, Lunaria or Honesty, with those silvery silky pennies.

If anyone has any suggestions for other large-scale flowers which dry well, I'd be interested to add them to the list!

Comments (5)

  1. Grower

    Angie's Garden

    A friend of mine dries her Cardoon flower heads. They too make quite an impact for a winter display Rachel.

  2. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Hi Angie, (waves) Cardoon... cardoon.. what a good idea, I hadn't thought of those. At what stage does your friend cut them - before they open, while they are still purple, or after they have started to go to seed? They are certainly lovely architectural plants, and I had never thought of drying them.

  3. Grower

    Angie's Garden

    Hi Rachel (big wave right back at ya!) She cuts them when they are still purple. She's away on holiday right now or else I'd give her a call and ask what she does with them although I'm sure there is plenty info out there on what to do with them.

  4. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Thanks Angie - there is indeed plenty of info out there, but much of the internet (in case you hadn't already noticed) is not exactly original: loads of those "helpful" sites are just a cut-and-paste of something else, so I'd far rather hear from someone who actually does it!

  5. Grower

    Angie's Garden

    Let me know how you get on Rachel - she's back in a fortnight so will ask her for you for future reference.

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