Flowers& - February 2015

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Flowers& FEBRUARY 2015 $5.50

Get Ready for Spring Fever! with a basketful of fresh and frisky designs for spring holidays & everyday

Pg 28 Innovative techniques for standout sympathy designs

Pg 42 Are you ready for Women’s Day?

Pg 62

contents FEBRUARY 2015

features 11

31st Annual Flowers& Design Contest Announcing this year’s theme: A Worldwide Wedding.


Spring Fever Designs to celebrate the season of rebirth & renewal. Floral design by Rachelle Nyswonger AIFD, Flowers by Rachelle, Chico, California Photography by Ron Derhacopian


Memorable Tributes Tools and techniques for standout sympathy designs. Floral design by Jim Ganger AIFD Photography by Ron Derhacopian


Are You Ready for March 8? Don’t miss out on Women’s Day—the next big thing in flower-buying occasions. 2 FEBRUARY 2015

pg 56

ON THE COVER Flowers in rich tones of pink and purple spill from a thick glass cylinder filled with artificial eggs in a range of natural tones—the perfect “vase filler” for Easter or any springtime special occasion. More eggs, inserted on picks, nestle among the flowers. For more designs by Rachelle Nyswonger AIFD geared to the upcoming spring season, see pages 28-41.


departments 8

Focus on Design A Tower of Roses By Rich Salvaggio AIFD, AAF, PFCI


pg 27

Design Tech Design Grids, All Kinds By Cindy Tole


Flower Tales Iris By Tom Bowling AIFD, PFCI


Fresh Focus Ranunculus


Shop Profile Debbie’s Bloomers By Marianne Cotter


What’s in Store


Advertiser Links


Industry Events


Where to Buy


Wholesaler Connection

Flowers& Volume 36, Number 2 (ISSN 0199-4751). Published monthly by Teleflora, 11444 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064, 800-321-2665, fax 310-966-3610. Subscription rates: U.S., 1 year, $66.00. Canada, 1 year, $90.00 (US currency only); Canadian GST registration number R127851293. Other foreign countries, 1 year, $102.00 (US currency only). Single issues, $5.50 each prepaid. Periodicals postage paid at Los Angeles, Calif., and at additional mailing offices. Postmaster: Send address changes to Flowers&, PO Box 16029, North Hollywood, CA 91615-9871. Copyright © 2015 by Teleflora. Printed in U.S.A.


pg 9

pg 18

Flowers& Publisher Editor Art Director

Rich Salvaggio AIFD, AAF, PFCI Bruce Wright Tony Fox

National Advertising Director

Peter Lymbertos

U.S. Subscriptions


Foreign Subscriptions




On the Internet

ADVISORY BOARD Teleflora Education Specialists Susan Ayala AIFD, PFCI, Loma Linda, Calif., Tom Bowling AIFD, PFCI, Syndicate Sales, Fairfield, Ohio, Tim Farrell AIFD, AAF, PFCI, Farrell’s Florist, Drexel Hill, Penn., Jim Ganger AIFD, Kansas City, Mo., Hitomi Gilliam Dallas, Texas, John Hosek


Vancouver, B.C., Canada, Bob Hampton



Surroundings Events and Floral, Verona,

Wisc., Alex Jackson AIFD, AAF, PFCI, Veldkamp’s Flowers, Lakewood, Colo., Vonda LaFever AIFD, PFCI,

Niceville, Fla., Joyce Mason-Monheim AIFD, AAF, PFCI, AzMF, Designer Destination,

Tucson, Ariz., Helen Miller AIFD, CF, CAFA, Flowers and Such, Adrian, Mich., Darla Pawlak AIFD, PFCI,

Essexville, Mich., Julie Poeltler


Julie’s Fountain of Flowers,

Lone Tree, Iowa, Jerome Raska AIFD, AAF, PFCI, CF, Blumz by JR Designs, Ferndale, Mich.,

Tom Simmons AIFD, CCF, Three Bunch Palms Productions, Palm Springs, Calif., Gerard Toh AIFD, CCF,

Garden Trade Services, Sherman Oaks, Calif., Cindy Tole, Botanica Flowers &

Gifts, Greensboro, N.C., Kevin Ylvisaker AIFD, PFCI, CAFA, Mukwonago, Wisc.

EDITORIAL COUNCIL Marie Ackerman AIFD, AAF, PFCI, Teleflora, Oklahoma City, Okla., Carol J. Caggiano AIFD, PFCI, A.

Caggiano, Inc., Jeffersonton, Va., Bert Ford AIFD, PFCI, Ford Flower Co., Salem, N.H.,

Wilton Hardy


JWH Design and Consultant, West Palm Beach, Fla.,

Elizabeth Seiji AIFD, Edelweiss Flower Boutique, Santa Monica, Calif.

Customer service: For service on your magazine subscription, including change of address, please write to Flowers&, P.O. Box 16029, No. Hollywood, CA 91615-9871, enclosing a recent address label. For faster service, call 818-286-3128; Teleflora members call 800-421-2815.




D&D International TOLL-FREE

(844) 471-3526

Please visit us at AmericasMart Atlanta – Bldg. 3, Floor 1, Booth #129 January 8-12, 2015 Visit to view our huge selection of quality vases.

focus on design


Floral design by Rich Salvaggio AIFD, AAF, PFCI

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

“A tower of roses” can be one of your bestselling yearround specials. Swirling, spiraling accessories lend visual movement as well as stem support to a dozen roses arranged with heather, hypericum and ivy.

3 2. Add clusters of heather and hypericum to cover the foam. Finish with ivy so that it winds up around the rose stems and trails down the side of the vessel.

1 1. Start by foaming the container, ensuring that the foam is nice and flat and rises about a half inch above the container. Insert 12 roses so the heads are about 10 inches above the container lip. Be sure to insert them straight into the foam, perpendicular to it.


3. Insert midollino sticks into the foam in groups of two or three. To make them more pliable, dip them quickly into water; this will make it easier to wind them around the column of roses. At the top, simply tuck the midollino into the column among the rose heads.


4. Wind some beaded wire around the column to help keep the midollino in place and to give the column a more defined shape. Secure the wire in the foam by wrapping both ends tightly around a wood pick. Insert one end, wind the wire up the column and back down, then secure the other end of the wire. As a final, whimsical touch, add a few midollino butterflies to the top of the design. b

For product information, see Where to Buy, page 67.

See this


Click Here



design tech


Basic design techniques from Cindy Tole

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

how to position flower stems with different kinds of grids 1

Design grids of all kinds, used to help position and support flower stems, are a flower-shop staple. They are especially useful when designing in clear glass, or when for any other reason you do not want to use floral foam. Two of the most popular design grids are made with clear tape or curly willow. These two techniques can be used separately, or they can be combined by placing the curly willow in the vase first, then adding the tape grid—as in the design on this page. Branching and

woody flower stems like hydrangea, placed first in the vase, can also serve to support additional flower stems. Here, the leaves were laced in first, then the flower stems. Without the grid, you could hardly create a bubble-bowl design with horizontal extensions like those seen here. 1. With practice, it takes only seconds to make a grid with clear anchor tape across the top of a glass bowl or cube. This method allows for very precise stem placements. 2. To use curly willow as a grid, start with flexible tips. Cut the length you need (it depends on the size of your container), rinse the tips and wrap them around your fingers, then release them into the bowl or cube.


10 JULY 2010

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design tech grids 1


a chickenwire grid Before we had floral foam, florists used chicken wire, often combined with moss. This kind of grid is still a good option. It gives excellent control over stem placements and may be preferable when you are designing with wilt-sensitive flowers like gerberas that do best in a solution of water and flower food without foam. And, if you are designing in an opaque vase, there is no need to add moss! 1. Prepare a length of chicken wire by folding it, first in half and then, accordionlike, into an S shape. 2. Place the grid in the container and angle your flower stems into it. Because they go through more than one hole in the grid, even long stems are held very securely. After placing the initial stems, you also have the interlaced stems supporting the design.



• Unique varieties • Outstanding quality • Unsurpassed beauty Specializing in exquisite, prize-winning ranunculus, gloriosa, sweetpeas, lisanthus, and other flowers and foliages—now quickly and readily available in major markets across North America Naniwa Flower Auction

design tech grids

a grid made with decorative wire Here’s another idea, one that works just as well in a tall vase as in a bubble bowl: a grid made of decorative wire. Unlike willow, the wire will not degrade over time. It’s very quick and easy to work with; it doesn’t take much to make a grid, and it comes in a wide range of colors to complement your flowers. Take about three feet of any kind of decorative wire—flat or round, in any color. Fold it in half into a tall V and scroll the ends a little into short tight curls with needle-nose pliers. Bring the scrolled ends down, making wide curls, and place the V in the vase. Add as many more of these V-shaped wires as you need to support stem placements, depending on the size of your vase. Of course, stems as you add them will also form part of the grid. All-daisy arrangements are frequently requested in some parts of the country. This one has a special touch with the wire grid. The curls of flat wire in the vase are made long enough so that they leap just beyond the rim; they are echoed with lily grass curls.


design tech grids functional and fancy In fact, working with decorative wire, the possibilities for design grids are endless! The woven flat-wire grid seen here took more time to make than the grids on the previous pages, but it also lends a different kind of decorative value to the design. After the basic weave was completed, the outer edges were secured with UGlu, and the tips of all the wires in the grid were curled inward so that any sharp edges would be tucked away. A combination of silver and gold, matte and shiny flat wire of different widths lends variety of color and texture to the grid, which offers up additional design options: lightweight and flexible, it can be bent into a gentle curve so that part of the grid functions like a trellis, with mini callas threaded through it, balanced with angled equisetum on the other side. b


Florist’s Best Friend--


Floral Delivery Tray or Floral Carrier! One carrier holds an average of 20 to 30 arrangements. • Light-weight, high-impact plastic. Size 48” x 48”. 33 lbs. Pins included. • Carrier is adjustable to any size (removing or adding blocks as needed). • Large, flat surface, available by moving pins to storage at sides. • No special places; load in the order you wish to deliver. • No tip-overs or broken ends---saves load and unload time.


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FEBRUARY 2015 21

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Now’s the time to subscribe! Get a monthly dose of design creativity, flower news and business advice, for just $5.50 per issue!* A digital subscription is only $19.95 for a full year. Visit: and click on the “subscribe” link. *Subscription rates are higher for international subscribers, discounted for Teleflora members. Visit our website for more info.

f lower tales

Stories and fun facts to share with customers about their favorite flowers


With three upright petals (called the standards) and three spreading

or drooping sepals (called the falls), the typical iris flower has a very distinctive and recognizable form—and that could go a long way toward explaining why the stylized image of an iris appears on objects found throughout the world, from ancient to modern times, and from western Europe to Japan. For centuries, however, it has been most strongly associated with France. Legend tells how the fifth-century Frankish king Clovis (regarded by some as the founder of France) adopted the iris as his symbol: Clovis stood at the edge of a river, pondering how to get his army across. Seeing an iris growing up through the water, he knew the river to be sufficiently shallow for the army to ford it. His ensuing victory in battle led to his conversion to Christianity. The iris, with its tripartite form, has also been seen as a symbol of the Holy Trinity. In 1147, Louis VII of France set out on a crusade under a banner bearing a stylized yellow iris that came to be known as the fleur-de-lis. Joan of Arc, likewise, carried a banner with the royal fleur-de-lis when she led French troops to victory

FEBRUARY 2015 23

flower tales iris •M

Floral design by Tom Bowling AIFD, PFCI

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

over the English. Today the fleur-de-lis can be seen in the flags of Quebec and of St. Louis, in the coat of arms of Florence, Italy, and in the logo of the New Orleans Saints football team, among many other places. • In Greek, the word iris means rainbow; the flower is so named because it comes in so many colors, from blue and purple to yellow, pink, orange and white. Individual iris flowers also tend to be multicolored, with veining, spotting, or stripes, particularly on the broad falls, which are so decorated because they serve as landing pads for pollinating insects. “Bearded” irises sport tufts in the midline of the falls. • While cut-flower irises are rarely fragrant, some garden varieties dispense a powerful and sweet perfume. In former times the rhizomes of certain irises were dried and aged up to five years to produce “orris root,” used in making perfume (with a scent like violets) and as a flavoring for beer, wine, and brandy. Even today, orris root and sometimes iris flowers are used to color and flavor popular brands of gin, including Magellan and Bombay Sapphire. Iris and tonic, anyone? Two varieties of iris combine for the design on this page, similar except that one has a deeper, the other a lighter hue. The effect of light and shadow is particularly striking with this distinctive, repeated flower form. Jutting straight up on their swordlike stems, with petals unfurling like “flags” (a common name for many kinds of iris), they rise from a premade nest of thick vines and grasses; the nest is further enhanced with wired wool and fresh curly willow tips, while polished baobab pods bring in a woodsy texture to complement the Weathered Oak Planter. b


fresh focus

by Bruce Wright

Ranunculus—the high-fashion flower consumers love but don’t know to ask for.


ou’re showing photos to a prospective bride. Seeing a bouquet of flowers with big round heads jammed with thickly pleated petals, she murmurs with pleasure— but what are they? Roses? Peonies? When you tell her they are ranunculus, her forehead sprouts a little puzzled frown. Oh, for a garden-variety common name— something more appropriate than “Persian buttercup,” which for many people calls up the picture of a tiny yellow flower with a single row of five petals, plucked from the lawn in early spring and held under the chin in a child’s game (“Do you like butter?”). The genus Ranunculus does hail from the

Middle East, and yellow may once have been the default color for its cup-shaped flowers. Today, however, cut-flower ranunculus come in a riot of colors and shapes, all bursting with petals—and some with heads that measure more than five inches in diameter. The Latin name ranunculus means “little frog.” In the wild, ranunculus (like frogs) are often found near water—but today’s cutflower ranunculus prefer a dry, not humid, growing environment. What they love best is cool weather with plenty of sunlight, a combination typically found in coastal areas like the best-known flower-growing regions of Italy, California, and Japan. IN SEASON The season for ranunculus depends on where they are grown. From southern California, prime-quality ranunculus is abundantly available in March, April, and May. A fall crop, harvested from October through January, yields flowers with smaller heads. Valentine’s Day falls somewhere in between, and although ranunculus comes in striking red, pink and white varieties, they

are typically not to be found on the market in large numbers for the holiday. Unlike some other fast-growing bulb flowers—tulips, say, which can be harvested in orange for the fall and new bulbs quickly started in red for Christmas and Valentine’s Day—ranunculus take a little longer. “We plant for the season, which means we’re into a multicolor mix for the spring,” says Bruce Brady of California grower, shipper and wholesaler Mellano and Company. California ranunculus are typically fieldgrown. In other places, although ranunculus like it cool, they may be raised in a greenhouse or hoop house, just to protect them from wind, rain, or hail and from the possibility of freezing. They may be grown from bulbs (really, tuberous roots that form little brown clusters), from seed, or from cloned plant tissue. Ranunculus from Japan are most abundantly available, and of prime quality, in January and February—but breeders and growers have worked to extend the season, from November to April. One Japanese

FEBRUARY 2015 25

fresh focus ranunculus grower, Shintaro Kamijo of Flower Spirit Farm—world-famous for ranunculus—believes that although ranunculus is originally a spring flower, winter ranunculus may be stronger and longer lasting—hardy and tough, though no less delicate in appearance. In Italy, different varieties of ranunculus may be harvested from early October through March or April. Ranunculus are also grown in France and Holland. From all sources combined, ranunculus are available year-round, but they are at their ravishing best from October through mid May. THE LONG AND SHORT OF IT Ranunculus are not known for long stems; usually they are no longer than 20 inches at the most. That may be a good thing, since the hollow, sometimes brittle stems are required to support ever-larger flower heads, as breeders and growers strive to increase the size. Long, straight stems are of course also an objective for breeders and growers. The stems of ranunculus are naturally curvy—a quality that can have its charm. Some florists, however, resort to inserting florist wire or a chenille stem inside the natural ranunculus stem, both for additional support and to encourage it to straighten out. Ranunculus stems often bear one or two branching side buds along with two or three ruffled leaves. Stems, leaves, and sepals are all typically covered with short, stiff, clinging hairs. Since hairy stems can mean an added risk of bacteria in the water, you may wish to treat ranunculus with a product like Chrysal CVBN (formulated for gerberas and other flowers with hairy stems) before placing the flowers in a regular holding or vase solution. Florists are advised to buy ranunculus, not in tight bud, but when the flowers have just begun to open. As with many flowers, the expected vase life for ranunculus is quite variable—but with flowers from reliable suppliers, and when you follow good care-andhandling procedures, ranunculus flowers can last up to three weeks. Whatever else you choose to call this underappreciated flower, that’s a beautiful reward for your effort. b


Flower Spirit Farm in Matsumoto City, Japan, has become renowned for ranunculus of astonishing size and quality, as seen in the photos across both pages at right. Some Japanese ranunculus have flower heads more than five inches in diameter, although the most popular varieties for export are typically between three and four inches. The distinctive varieties grown here are almost entirely purchased from top Japanese breeder Aya Engei. They thrive in the cool, dry, bright climate of the Matsumoto City area in raised beds of well-draining soil, as seen at near right. Japanese ranunculus are sold in North American markets through top wholesalers, who buy them from Naniwa Flower Auction; more at

In California, grower, shipper and wholesaler Mellano & Company specializes in the Giant Tecolote brand of ranunculus and grows the flower in a range of colors, including a pink and white picotee, as seen at far upper left. The photo on page 25 is also courtesy of Mellano, which manages the famous Flower Fields of Carlsbad, California—40 acres of bright ranunculus that bloom each spring, usually from mid March to mid May. The cool and bright coastal climate of southern California is perfect for ranunculus. More at

In the coastal flower-growing region known as the Ligurian Riviera, in northwestern Italy, ranunculus have become one of the top-producing crops, thanks in part to breeder Biancheri Creations, which has provided Italian growers with exotic new varieties including the Riviera line, in vibrant colors with green centers, and the ruffled, early-flowering PonPon series, which can be cut as early as the beginning of October. Photos seen here are from Biancheri Creations and Italian grower Parodi Sanremo; more at and

FEBRUARY 2015 27

28 1 AUGUST 2010

spring fever!

designs to celebrate the season of rebirth & renewal. For product information,


Floral design by Rachelle Nyswonger AIFD, Flowers by Rachelle, Chico, California

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

see Where to Buy, page 67.

A BUDDING SPHERE A curly-willow sphere makes a versatile, vernal armature that can be fashioned well in advance, with fresh flowers placed at the last minute. Given a few days in water, the sphere will look even prettier, covered with fresh green leaves. Start with one long piece of curly willow and tie it to itself to make a hoop. It will be oval-shaped to begin with, but as you add more hoops, the tension between them makes it easier to form circles. Tie the slender lateral branches back into the sphere to reinforce the shape. Here, Rachelle has bound callas to the sphere with Bind Wire; even though some are out of water, they will remain fresh and beautiful for the duration of a party. Hydrangea anchors the composition with a low focal area.

2 AUGUST 2010

FEBRUARY 2015 29

Spring fever!


FRESH FROM THE GARDEN What’s more fun than fresh garden produce in a spring centerpiece? Clear glass cubes are filled with foam surrounded by carrots (sliced lengthwise) and asparagus tips. Green trachelium makes a witty substitute for carrot tops; hydrangea and orange roses complement the color scheme, with coils of decorative wire added to the outside of the asparagus cubes with UGlu. Name-card holders are made from more asparagus tips, secured with coiled wire.

FEBRUARY 2015 31

Spring fever!

SUSPENDED ANIMATION The swirling lines of tulip stems and their bright pink blossoms are displayed to advantage in a pair of clear glass cylinders. A stemmed cylinder rests inside a wider bowl, creating a tiered effect that is emphasized with tulip blooms and crushed glass at the level of the rim of the bowl. Variegated lily grass accentuates the lively, curling motion of the stems. Clearly this centerpiece would need to be completed on site.

38 32

INSIDE AND OUT Sometimes it takes permanent botanicals to achieve a charmingly natural effect—like this flowering branch, visible inside the birdcage and growing through it at the top. Rachelle has completed the design with ivy plants and fresh flowers, but the concept could also be done with all permanent materials. The hydrangea, roses, and ivy are simply placed in low foamed trays with bleached reindeer moss.

FEBRUARY 2015 33

THE MAGPIE’S NEST “Birds make their nests of whatever they can find,” says Rachelle—so the pink midollino seems natural enough woven into a nest of curly willow, while it also adds bright color. Rachelle started by placing foam in a green plastic bowl, edged with preserved reindeer foam; then she inserted curly willow tips at six points around the perimeter, like spokes in a wheel. She curved the willow inward and tied it to other stems to create a swirling effect. From there it’s a simple matter to add midollino, pink tulips, astilbe, roses, sweet peas, and calcynia.

34 40

Spring fever!

SUSTAINING NATURE “So many corporate accounts are now asking for sustainable designs,” says Rachelle—meaning, designs that use products that won’t be just thrown away. Small plants, like two-inch kalanchoes and succulent rosettes still attached to their roots, not only meet that demand but also make for extra long-lasting decorations. This design can also be created with kalanchoe blooms cut from a larger plant. The kalanchoes and succulents are inserted into real eggshells with holes carefully poked into the tops (rinse the insides with bleach solution). The shells are then nestled in a bed of green trachelium, supported by UGlu to keep them upright. In the larger cube with the nest of twisted vines (above), the eggs are artificial. Rachelle added spotted feathers to the nest to add variety of pattern.

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Spring fever!

STACKING UP The flared ceramic “petals” and ombré coloration of the Pretty Petal vase is thrown into relief with stacked vases. One rests in foam on top of another, with hydrangea, astilbe, and a calla tucked into the edges of the foam. To transport, you would separate the two, but once one is set on top of the other, they are quite stable. CIRCLE GAME A trellis of any kind adds height and perceived value to floral designs—along with that spring-garden feeling. Fashioned from a set of three shallow decorative bowls, this one nicely complements the wood planter. Rachelle filled the planter with foam, then anchored the largest, bottommost bowl sideways at the back of the foam using short stakes. She attached the other two bowls to the first one with Bind Wire, then wove curly willow down through, which makes the trellis very secure. Callas, with their flexible stems and curving blossoms, reinforce the circular shape of the bowls, while astilbe defines a feathery central axis; the narrow leaves of the astilbe add a distinctive accent to one side. 36

FEBRUARY 2015 37

Spring fever!


EGG SALAD An assortment of artificial eggs in a range of natural colors makes a beautiful “vase filler� for a thick glass cylinder, ten inches tall by nine inches wide. One upright brick of foam fits nicely in the cylinder and is held securely in place by the eggs, poured in on all sides around the foam. Rachelle filled the top of the foam with hydrangea, calcynia, Cool Water roses, stock, three stunning purple phalaenopsis sprays, and a couple of the artificial eggs mounted on picks.

WINDOW BOX Three bamboo rectangles placed side by side create the effect of a window box planter. They can be transported separately, then joined or configured in any number of ways, and if they are decorations for a wedding or party, can be given individually to guests to take home. Rachelle filled the box liners with foam, leaving room for small ivy and kalanchoe plants, plus cut forsythia, Canterbury bells, hydrangea, roses, sweet peas, and iris. Egg-filled nests provide round resting places for the eye.

FEBRUARY 2015 39

Spring fever!

BRANCHING OUT With their fresh bright green, lichen branches work as well in spring as in fall designs. Rachelle has fashioned them into an armature, binding several short branches together with Rustic Wire and anchoring the bundle to the foam with greening pins. From there it was simple to cover the foam with light green hydrangea and to complete the design with gerberas, stock, solidago and tulips. b


FEBRUARY 41 AUGUST2015 2010 14

memorable tributes

tools and techniques for standout sympathy designs. Floral design by Jim Ganger AIFD

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

For product information,


See how-to photographs for many of these designs on pages 54-55.

see Where to Buy, page 67.

LEAF DRAPE To complement a lush and lavish arrangement of mostly tropical flowers, Jim created a custom container: he surrounded a glass cylinder with chicken wire and added a flowing skirt of aspidistra leaves with double-sided tape. (For how-to photos, see page 54.) To make the leaves more flexible, he split them and removed the spine. You could also add whole leaves first and fill in with split leaves later; outer leaves can be added with UGlu Dashes. The vase arrangement itself is low and drapes over the leafy vase. Jim placed stems of hydrangea first, to help support the positioning of other stems, including anthuriums, uluhe fern curls, gloriosas, roses, craspedia, and hanging amaranthus.

1 2010 42AUGUST

Designs that say “Season’s Greetings” with warmth and style.

For product information,


Floral design by Vonda LaFever AIFD, PFCI

Photography by Ron Derhacopian

see Where to Buy, page 67.

A SPARKLING EMBRACE The “Versatility Embracer” offers a way to cover bubble bowls and glass cubes with diamond wrap quickly and efficiently, without glue or tape. It’s simply an elastic tube that can be slipped over the bowl or cube and that conforms to its shape. Here the glitter of diamonds on the Embracer is complemented by loops of flexible Creative Coils in metallic copper. Vonda simply tied a long piece of Creative Coil into many wide loops, laid it across the top of the bowl, and designed through it, placing the pine stems first as support for her other floral materials.

2 AUGUST 2010

FEBRUARY 2015 43

memorable tributes

WARM AND BRIGHT At left, a pair of bromeliad plants lends dramatic focus to a warm, uplifting easel spray; the form of the bromeliad bracts is echoed with their foliage and, writ larger, with that of whaleback leaves. Also featured are orange Asiatic lilies, large heads of light green hydrangea, Free Spirit roses and aralia leaves. The relatively large and heavy plants are securely supported with hyacinth stakes on a Sculpting Sheet foundation; for a how-to, see pages 54-55. A GRACEFUL CURVE Heavy with cascading oral materials including whaleback leaves, yellow gloriosa vines, and hanging heliconia, this casket design drapes nicely over the top of the casket, thanks to a construction technique that involves cutting a Raquettes Holder in half and linking the two halves together with cable ties. The result is a Raquette hinged in the middle. (For a how-to photo, see page 55.) To complete the design, Jim ďŹ lled the two halves with ti leaves, obake anthuriums, beehive ginger, James Storie and oncidium orchids, and uluhe fern curls, along with pinky-orange Chile roses.


AUGUST 2010 45 4 FEBRUARY 2015

memorable tributes


AUGUST 2010 5

SERENE SETTINGS At left, a pair of tropical designs supports a funeral urn, resting on a large aralia leaf; the designs can be enjoyed separately after the service. Above, the setting is created with a series of plastic-backed Ring Holders, linked with bowl tape before flowers were added (see page 55). The holders were then covered with contrasting materials: hydrangea florets, carnations, silver-dollar eucalyptus, and variegated dracaena leaves. Jim overlapped the eucalyptus leaves and pinned them in place with short, U-shaped pieces of light green midollino, which he soaked until it was very flexible. He surrounded the outside and the top of two Ring Holders with whole variegated dracaena leaves, then cut more leaves into snippets and layered them on top with UGlu Dashes. At right, a foam cross, covered with white mums and draped with a keepsake rosary, rests on a leaf-covered sphere, nestled in a bed of black faux river rocks. For maximum stability, Jim used the Oasis Standing Sphere, which comes with a plastic-backed, flat base so that it rests easily and securely on a flat surface. The sphere is covered with lemon leaves: Jim first attached the base of each leaf to the sphere with a greening pin; then he soaked midollino to make it pliable, cut short pieces and fashioned them into U shapes, which he inserted into the tops of the leaves for a decorative effect like stitching. FEBRUARY 2015 47

memorable tributes

48 36

SWEET DREAMS Emphasizing the horizontal, a closedcasket design based in a long Raquettes Holder conveys a feeling of peaceful rest. This one is simply skirted with aralia leaves and filled with white flowers: baby’s breath, roses, lisianthus, callas, and carnations. It’s a good idea to prepare a Raquettes Holder for this type of design by applying a rug gripper product to the bottom to keep it from slipping (see the how-to photo on page 54).

NOVEMBER FEBRUARY 2015 2014 49 37

memorable tributes

40 50

WOVEN WITH LOVE At left, aspidistra leaves create a braided effect in a stylish and feminine wreath; they also cover a good deal of the foam in a mâché wreath form very efficiently. Insert the stem of each leaf into the foam; then pin the tip of that leaf to the foam by inserting the stem of the next leaf through it, creating a rhythmic pattern. With the leaves in place, you can insert light-green carnations and pink Titanic roses in between them. At the end, you may need to insert salal leaves here and there to fill in the last gaps.

THE CIRCLE BENDS Below, using a technique similar to the one employed with a Raquettes Holder on page 45, Jim cut a 24-inch mâché wreath form in half, then connected the two halves with cable ties, effectively providing the wreath with a hinged axis so that it bends in the middle and conforms gracefully to the curving shape of the casket cover (for the how-to photo, see page 54). An effect of contrast and depth is gained by using two kinds of red roses, Freedom and Black Baccara; the roses seem to float on a bed of silver-dollar eucalyptus, with leaves of a size and shape similar to the roses. This wreath holds just short of a hundred roses altogether.

NOVEMBER FEBRUARY 2014 2015 41 51

homebound ward memorable tributes


HEAVENLY SPHERES Secured to a Raquettes Holder with bamboo skewers, flower-filled orbs provide resting places for the eye, while James Storie orchids, dieffenbachia leaves, and lily grass add lively movement, springing from the surface of round forms. The spheres, filled with spray mums, hug the long Raquettes Holder, which is covered with green carnations. For a how-to photo and caption that explains how to make the foundation of the design, turn the page.

DO YOU BELIEVE? A fairytale setting with peacock feathers and gold curly willow creates an aura of enchantment for a pair of angel ornaments with feather wings. One is hung from the gilded curly willow with bullion wire (the original ornament hanger hangs down behind the angel); the other is elevated on a curly willow stem. Cool Water roses and seafoam statice play off the iridescent, jewel-tone palette of the angels and their wings.

FEBRUARY 2015 53

How-To’s for Memorable Tributes,

SWEET DREAMS A Raquettes Holder offers a beautiful foundation for a long closed-casket design. To keep the holder from sliding on the casket, use non-slip rug gripper tape, available at home improvement stores or online.

pages 42-53 LEAF DRAPE To surround a cylinder vase with curving, draping leaves, begin by forming chicken wire into a flaring haystack shape. Secure the chicken wire to the cylinder vase with bowl tape. Prepare aspidistra leaves by splitting each leaf along the spine and removing the spine to make the leaf more flexible. Next, apply Oasis double-sided tape around the middle and the top of the chicken wire to make a base for adding the leaves. You can also add whole leaves first and fill in with split leaves later, adding the outer leaves with more double-sided tape or with UGlu Dashes. Begin by adding leaves lower down on the chickenwire form, with the tips downward, making sure that the tips splay out nicely onto the table surface. Finally, when the bottom is covered (as seen at left), add more leaves higher up, folding them over the top of the form. THE CIRCLE BENDS To make a wreath that is hinged in the middle so it drapes over a curving casket, use an Oasis mâché wreath form, where the foam is divided into six segments. Cut the form in half by simply snipping through the mâché with clippers at one of the points between segments. To insert cable ties, drill through the foam and the mâché at once with a power drill, making the holes at least an inch from the edge. The foam is secured to the mâché with glue, but for this type of design, it’s helpful to wrap the foam lightly with bowl tape all around for additional security before adding flowers.

WARM AND BRIGHT One way to create a large easel spray with dramatic impact is to use a portion of a Sculpting Sheet as your foundation. Begin by bending the wire easel so the top is at more of an angle. Sculpting Sheets are easily cut to the desired proportions and attached to the easel with Dixon Pins. Heavy materials like bromeliad plants can then be attached to the Sculpting Sheet using hyacinth stakes, which penetrate through the wettable foam and anchor in the Styrofoam. Prepare the bromeliad stems for the hyacinth stakes by first cutting into the stems with a knife.


SERENE SETTINGS A design foundation of plastic-backed Ring Holders of assorted sizes, some resting on others and joined together with bowl tape, could be used in many ways. The main limitation is that if the holders are fully soaked, they might be too heavy for some design applications—for example, to hang from an easel—and more difficult to transport without the tape tearing through the foam. Depending on the application and the materials you are inserting, you may wish to keep the foundation lighter in weight by soaking the holders lightly using a spray bottle.

HEAVENLY SPHERES To make the foundation for a casket design like the one on the previous page, soak a 36-inch Raquettes Holder, then poke holes in the lightweight plastic that surrounds the holder on one end and stand it upright to let it fully drain. (As it comes, the plastic on the holder is perforated only on the top and on the long sides.) Using a long knife, cut angles into your floral-foam spheres so that they can hug the Raquettes Holder; then secure them to the holder with bamboo skewers, punching them through the spheres into the holder and snipping off the excess (you could also use hyacinth stakes for this purpose). The foam mechanics for this design can become very heavy if fully soaked; therefore, you may want to spray the spheres rather than soaking them, or pour a measured amount of water to keep them from getting too heavy on top of the weight of the Raquette. A GRACEFUL CURVE To support a wide casket design that bends in the middle, so it can drape over the sides of the casket, begin by cutting a 27-inch Raquettes Holder in half: Score the light perforated plastic that surrounds the holder, then cut into the sides of the rigid plastic tray on the bottom of the holder with pruners. Bend the holder down the middle, making a weakened crease along the bottom of the plastic tray. At this point you can cut the tray with a design knife. Drill holes in the holder on either side of the divide with a power drill. Finally, use bowl tape to reinforce the light, perforated plastic around the foam; then reconnect the two halves of the holder with cable ties. FEBRUARY 2015 55

memorable tributes

NATURE’S CHOICE White flowers are the classic choice for sympathy arrangements. This simple yet effective design gains in impact by taking a hint from nature: the shape and placement of the aspidistra leaves recalls the natural foliage of many bulb flowers, including gladiolus. Make the design from the inside out, inserting first the gladiolus stems, then the aspidistra leaves, then the hydrangea. b

38 56

shop profile

By Marianne Cotter

Photography by Brian Wancho Photography

Debbie’s Bloomers Flowers and Gifts

A savvy owner keeps her shop on track with tech tools and marketing.


fter a long career in finance, culminating in a position as bank vice president, Sandy Blanco decided it was time to have a little fun: a gift shop, maybe. She began looking at existing businesses for sale and in 1989 she bought Debbie’s Bloomers out of bankruptcy, confident that she now owned a gift shop that sold a few flowers...

The showroom at Debbie’s Bloomers is unified by a black carpet with sparks of color that key into the color-themed displays.

stroll through the DebThen the reality of the El Paso, Texas bie’s Bloomers makes business set in. it clear that—flowers “Soon I realized, Owner: Sandy Blanco TMF or no flowers—Sandy no, I don’t have a Niche: Flowers and gifts got the gift shop she gift shop with flowalways wanted (more ers, I have a flower Staff: 6 full-time, part-time as needed, 3 drivers on that later). shop with gifts,” she One thing she laughs. “So I immeSpace: 6,300 square feet didn’t change was the diately went to work shop’s name. “The on my Texas Master original Debbie had a Florist (TMF) desigloyal following and a nation and continued good reputation with her from there with my floral studies. I haven’t stopped since. I believe in customers,” Sandy says. “I didn’t change the name then—and now, 25 years later, there’s the importance of education.” Coming at the business from a finance no point.” background gave Sandy the smarts she needed to put the business in order. She FROM MOTHER TO DAUGHTER Working phased out the store’s consignment inventory alongside Sandy is daughter Marisa Guerrero while beefing up home décor and permanent AIFD, CFD, who serves as the store’s manbotanicals. And as for that gift shop dream, a ager. Like many flower-shop children, Marisa

FEBRUARY 2015 57

shop profile was exposed to the business as she grew up, helping out at holidays and being paid in pizza by the slice. “When you’re a teenager you don’t want to do what your parents do,” Marisa recalls. “But after going to college, moving away, and seeing a bit of the world, it was time to come back, and I’ve been focused on flowers ever since.” Marisa matches her mother’s enthusiasm for the floral industry. After serving on the board of the New Mexico-West Texas Teleflora Unit for five years, Marisa also served a term as Unit President, a position held in the past by her mother. She recently earned her accreditation as Certified Floral Designer and was inducted as a member of the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD). This year she was awarded the AIFD Certified Floral Judge/Evaluator designation and became the editor of AIFD’s national newsletter, Focal Points. Marisa has presented designs at a number of association meetings, state conventions, and local shows. Sandy and Marisa work together with the understanding that Marisa will eventually take over the business—a plan that puts both mother and daughter at ease about the future of Debbie’s Bloomers. “It gives me peace of mind knowing that I have my mother here to answer questions and guide me,” says Marisa. “I can see how she deals with customers. Her habits become my habits. But we also know that a company reflects the owner’s personality, so there will be changes. I keep pushing forward, and my mom accepts the changes that I want to make, while I respect her opinions and experiences when she feels that something may not work out as planned.”

Marisa Guerrero AIFD, CFD serves as manager for Debbie’s Bloomers and works with her mom, owner Sandy Blanco TMF, with the understanding she will eventually take over the shop. Natural light pours into the interior via full-size full-size windows that line half the store, surrounded by an ample parking lot.


Together they’re a winning team. NO ORDINARY CASH REGISTER Day to day, Marisa and her mother depend on staff designers to fill orders, preferring to focus their time on running the business. And today, focusing on business means focusing on technology, which the pair works diligently to stay on top of. Early adopters of Teleflora’s Eagle POS system, they recently switched to Dove POS. While many florists regard their cash register as just another office machine, at Debbie’s Bloomers the Dove POS is a full-blown marketing system that supports the shop’s business strategy. “We’ve had a POS system for 20 years, and it pains me to see how many shops still don’t see their value,” says Marisa. “A lot of shops are hesitant to adopt POS systems because of the high cost—but with everything these systems can do, they’re hugely advantageous for a business. “One of the best tools a POS system offers is the ability to track the past year’s sales data,” Marisa goes on. “We then use that data to predict future sales, which allows us to anticipate our buying and staffing needs. As you can imagine, that’s especially helpful at the busy holiday seasons of Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day—but it’s just as important during the slow summer months when we don’t want to over-staff. “In addition to using it as a crystal ball, we also use the Dove POS to look up individual customer data. For example, when a corporate customer calls and says, ‘Send whatever we always send,’ we have the past order information at our fingertips. We can look up their last order or check their average purchase amount and quickly finish the sale, then immediately and automatically send them an email showing the order details.” DATA IN, USEFUL INFO OUT Collecting customer emails is part of what makes the POS system work so well as a customer-service and marketing tool. “When we first started asking customers for their email addresses, we got lots of noes,” Marisa reports, “because we made it sound like an optional bit

FEBRUARY 2015 59

shop profile of information. But consumers are used to giving out that information everywhere now, from the pizza joint to the clothing store. So with a little practice and confidence and the right wording—like, ‘What email address should we send the receipt to?’—we very rarely get turned down these days. “We are also able to use the data collected in our point of sale system to track employee productivity and sales,” Marisa continues. “This is a very beneficial statistic to be able to access quickly. Among other things, it shows in real numbers what each employee produces per hour and what the average sale is for each of them. This allows us to work with employees on an individual basis to strengthen specific skills. It also allows us to challenge them to improve, based on measurable data. It’s not enough to say that someone isn’t producing enough, without being able to back that up and provide a goal for them to strive for.” SIGNED, SEALED, DELIVERED As soon as the shop upgraded to the Dove POS they made another investment—in tablet computers for their delivery drivers, which allowed them to fully take advantage of Dove’s Delivery Manager module. “Sending our drivers out with tablets allows them to confirm deliveries in real time, which has real benefits,” says Marisa. “The customer receives an email confirming that their delivery has been made, and our POS system is updated with that information immediately. This cuts down on the number of customers calling in to ask if their flowers have been delivered—plus, it makes it easy to see which drivers have which deliveries when there are questions.” TENDING THE SHOP WEBSITE Technology, by nature, is not static. Like a flower garden, it needs tending. To continue to be effective your website will need upgrading, optimization, and maintenance, not to mention a strategy. When tended thus, it will yield sales and efficiencies you couldn’t possibly accomplish on your own. Debbie’s Bloomers turned to Team-


Floral, a consulting firm that works with flower shops to improve business efficiencies and sales, for website optimization. “We engaged them to market our website and we’ve seen a huge increase in our web sales,” says Marisa. “We used their Web Acceleration Program, which allowed them to take our existing Teleflora template site and customize it so that it has a unique feel, while featuring different products than the other shops in our market. They also merchandise on our website—change the products and their placement—regularly, and they create Facebook posts a couple times a week—plus, they gave our wedding section a total revamp.” According to Marisa, TeamFloral services have proven to be well worth the cost. “Our average web sale jumped more than $12 per order in the first couple months we worked with them,” she says. “We’ve also seen our conversion rate [the percentage of a website’s visitors who convert into customers] double—which means more people are buying instead of just looking at all the beautiful pictures on our website. “Customers will call saying, ‘I’m on your website and I like this arrangement,’ looking at one of the higher-priced designs, and that gives our sales staff the confidence to ask for higher dollar sales when they take calls. It’s a win-win for us and for the customer, who is happy to spend more to get the perfect arrangement.” MARKETING TO THE FUTURE Preparing a business for the future means connecting with the next generation. With over 40 high schools in El Paso, Debbie’s Bloomers works on a regular basis with student activity directors to be there for prom, homecoming, graduation, and other student events. “We’ll donate the presentation bouquets for the

The entire back wall of the shop is painted black, setting off wall art that includes Southwest-style folk-art crosses, permanent florals, mirrors and other objects, many created by local artists.

homecoming queen’s court in return for advertising to the students,” says Marisa. “One way is by putting coupons with the dance tickets they sell to their students.” Those coupons bring in orders for corsages and boutonnieres. Sandy has learned to engage young customers on their own digital territory. “This year we started texting the students a photo of their prom corsage as soon as it was ready,” she says. “They thought it was very exciting and shared it with their friends. That was a way of advertising our business without launching an expensive advertising campaign. And it drew in lots of last-minute orders.” MILITARY STYLE Home to about 34,000 active-duty personnel, Fort Bliss has been an important part of the El Paso community for over 150 years. Many military ceremonial traditions call for floral arrangements, including change of command ceremonies, which take place several times a month. Debbie’s Bloomers is called to serve by creating the wrapped bouquets for the incoming and outgoing commanders and sometimes their families. Another source of military business comes from soldiers serving overseas who want to send flowers to their families. They tend to place orders directly on Debbie’s Bloomers’ website—but the tradition goes back to the early ’90s before e-commerce, during Desert Storm, when overseas phone calls were difficult for soldiers. Debbie’s Bloomers would send order forms through the commanding officers that the soldiers would fill out and mail back with a check. In this setting, word of mouth is the greatest advertising. “For years, soldiers have recommended us to one another and those referrals have kept them coming back year after year,” says Sandy. AROUND THE MOUNTAIN While Texas is known for its wide-open spaces, deliveries in the El Paso area are hampered by the presence of the Franklin Mountains that sit in the middle of the city. “El Paso wraps around

the mountain, causing our delivery area to be larger than most cities of our population,” explains Sandy. “We service both sides of the mountain every day. Our delivery area from east to west is 50 miles and north to south is 35 miles. Our drivers are contracted and they use their own vehicles. A lot of flower shops don’t do that, but we do and it has worked for us for a very long time.” ABOUT THAT GIFT SHOP While a brisk flower business takes place in the design room, customers who walk in the door experience a large gift shop with many floral accents. Sandy repeats merchandising techniques throughout the store: Three wall panels fitted with base moldings are set at an angle to one another, creating room corners that become vignettes, each painted a bright color to host a theme that includes wall art, florals, vases, lanterns, lamps, and tabletop items. Brightly painted furniture pieces are used as display units. A yellow wooden hutch spills gifts out of its open drawers. Hanging paper lanterns and wind chimes carry the eye upward, as do sheer fabric panels dropping from the ceiling. Debbie’s Bloomers’ desert location informs some of the inventory. With 300 days a year of sunshine, painted glass window panels are a big seller. “People have large windows that draw in lots of sun,” says Sandy. In the heat and dryness of the Chihuahuan Desert, permanent botanicals are another popular choice for customers, thanks to their durability. BEING BRAVE Sandy’s motto can be summed up in two words: Be brave. “In business you need to take measured risks,” she advises. “You can expect failures. I’ve had many failures over 25 years. But if we’re not trying something new then we’re standing still. You need to move forward.” Last Valentine’s Day, Marisa took a big risk and placed a $450 arrangement in the cooler. Mother and daughter held their breath… Just an hour later someone took it out of the cooler and bought it. Those are the rewards of being brave! b

FEBRUARY 2015 61

ARE YOU READY for March 8? t’s just possible you haven’t yet heard about Women’s Day—but if not, you surely will. With virtually every major floral-industry organization getting behind it, momentum is building fast to promote March 8 as a day to honor and respect women—in many ways, of course, but first and foremost, with flowers. Efforts to promote Women’s Day as a flower-buying occasion have been underway since 2009, thanks to California flower grower Lane DeVries, company president and CEO of Sun Valley Floral Farms. Last summer, Lane was recognized for those efforts with the Society of American Florists’ Marketer of the Year award. Five years ago, Lane saw opportunity in a calendar event that falls in a period between Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, a period when flower sales usually slow down. Women’s Day had plenty of other attributes to recommend it as a good time to promote flower sales: • Also known as International Women’s Day, this annual event is already well recognized in Europe, especially eastern Europe and Russia—and in parts of the U.S. with immigrant populations from those areas. The flavor of Women’s Day varies from place to place, with a political and human rights theme stronger in some regions than in others. But it’s an official holiday in 28 countries around the world, where many give flowers or other gifts to the important and admired women in their lives. • Although the tradition exists of celebrating Women’s Day with flowers, it’s not strongly associated with any particular flower or color (like, say, red roses at Valentine’s Day). Purple is favored in some areas, where celebrants may wear purple ribbons—but in the U.S., the field is wide open for gifts of any flower, any color. • Most important, Women’s Day is simply a day when anyone, male or female, is encouraged to express appreciation for women’s contributions and achievements. It has nothing to do with romance or family—which broadens the market of potential flower buyers considerably. This is a day when those who give



Don’t miss out on Women’s Day, the next big thing in flower-buying occasions./By Bruce Wright flowers may well feel less pressure than on Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day to make the gift costly and impressive. By the same token, those who give on Women’s Day are far more likely to give multiple gifts—and the pool of potential givers and recipients is much larger. ALL ON BOARD Since 2012, the Society of American Florists (SAF) has joined with Sun Valley in creating marketing materials for Women’s Day. With help from a variety of customers and marketing partners, Sun Valley has already seen revenue rise 39 percent in the time period when Women’s Day product ships out from the farms—just as a result of limited but targeted marketing through particular channels. This year, the snowball has been gathering speed and mass. At the annual Floral Distribution Conference hosted by the Wholesale Florist & Florist Supplier Association (WF&FSA), representatives from a number of floral-industry groups came together in a meeting organized by Michael LoBue of CalFlowers (the California Association of Flower Growers and Shippers). At the end of the day six of these organizations formed a partnership and called it Promote Women’s Day. The partnership covers a wide industry base, from U.S. and Colombian flower growers to importers, exporters, wholesalers and others. In fact, the coalition represents possibly the most successful example in many years of cooperation and collaboration among different segments of the industry to boost flower sales. WHAT WILL YOU DO? Note that, as a result of all these efforts, Women’s Day will be heavily promoted this year—to the floral industry. Getting the message out to consumers is the next, nec-

special Women’s Day bouquet and promote it on your website and Facebook page. Naturally, with all your promotional efforts, you don’t want to lose track of the real agenda for Women’s Day: to celebrate women’s achievements and advance basic human rights for women, at home and all over the world. The great thing about promoting Women’s Day is that you can do all that and sell flowers, too—and what could be better than that? b Slogans on web banner ads (like the one at left) created by the Society of American Florists let consumers know right away how Women’s Day is different from Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day: this is a day when anyone, male or female, can show appreciation for the many roles that women play in our lives and communities. A comprehensive package of marketing materials for Women’s Day, from print ads to social-media graphics, is made available free of charge to SAF members on the SAF website,

essary step—and that means you. Yes, SAF will create a blog post on its popular consumer website, Other national marketers will probably help to boost the profile of Women’s Day online. But ultimately, it’s up to retailers to make their customers aware and motivate them to buy flowers for Women’s Day. Fortunately, there is plenty of help available. A fantastic wealth of both materials and ideas for promoting the holiday is available on the SAF website, The society’s Women’s Day Resource Center includes links to graphics and posts that florists can share on Facebook, tweets, web banner ads, print ads, color fliers, press releases, talking points, and radio commercial scripts. All these materials are offered as free downloads to SAF members—a good reason for joining, if you are not a member already. Teleflora is planning to create and share similar marketing aids, including a printed poster and social-media graphics and tips, for use by member florists. And of course, the Promote Women’s Day coalition will be supporting the retail sector as well. Reach out to your wholesale florist supplier and ask what they can do to help you boost flower sales on March 8 this year! So many of the most effective marketing strategies cost little or nothing. Valentine’s Day is a perfect opportunity to make customers aware that Women’s Day is also coming up. Explore Women’s Day events that may already be taking place in your community, and offer to help. Create your own

Teleflora will expand its support for Women’s Day in 2015 in a variety of ways, including distribution to member florists of a poster (above) designed to raise awareness and offer tempting ideas for appropriate floral gifts. More ideas and resources for promoting Women’s Day will be available to members at

FEBRUARY 2015 63

what’s in store

PETAL PERFECT The brushwork on Teleflora’s hand-painted ceramic Pretty Petal vase creates a beautiful ombré effect; a butterfly pick of metallized plastic comes with the vase and adds the perfect accent. Call 800-333-0205 or visit

GROW YOUR OWN Supplement your freshflower supply sources with special accents from your own garden. Learn how with an online course from British gardening expert and cut-flower grower Charlie Ryrie. Class size is limited; the course includes weekly tutorials and assignments with feedback from the instructor. Visit and click on “The Cutting Garden.”


GLASS ACT The vast inventory at D&D International includes clear and colored glass for special events and everyday, all at highly competitive prices, including specialty items and candle holders. Stylish ceramic vases are also offered. Call 323-583-3949 or visit

SPREAD YOUR WINGS Whether attached to a spring-themed floral arrangement or as part of an eye-catching window display, Betallic’s 33-inch holographic foil balloon, Pastel Butterfly, is sure to make an impact. The same design also comes in a 14-inch Mini Air Shape. Call Betallic at 314-991-8800 or visit

advertiser links

industry events

To access our advertisers’ websites, go to and click on “Advertisers in This Issue.” ACCENT DÉCOR, INC.







For the latest additions to Teleflora Unit Programs, go to and click on Design Education to access the Floral Event Calendar in the Unit Program section.


FEBRUARY 3-5, FORT LAUDERDALE, FL AmericanHort Next Level Conference, Hyatt Pier 66. Visit

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SEPTEMBER 9-12, AMELIA ISLAND, FL SAF Annual Convention, Ritz Carlton. Call the Society of American Florists at 800-336-4743 or visit

OCTOBER 28-30, BOGOTÁ, COLOMBIA Proflora, Corferias Convention Center. Visit


World Floral Expo, LA Convention Center. Visit

Great Lakes Floral Expo, DeVos Center. Call the Michigan Floral Association at 517-575-0110 or visit

JUNE 7-8, HARTFORD, CT SAF Retail Growth Solutions Mini-Conference, Hartford Marriott Farmington. Call the Society of American Florists at 800-3364743 or visit

JUNE 24-30, DALLAS, TX Dallas Holiday & Home Expo, Dallas Market Center. Call 800-DAL-MKTS or visit National AIFD Symposium, Sheraton Denver Downtown. Call 410-752-3318 or visit

JULY 7-14, ATLANTA, GA Atlanta International Gift & Home Furnishings Market (temporaries, July 9-13), AmericasMart. Call 800-ATL-MART or visit

JULY 11-14, COLUMBUS, OH Cultivate15 (formerly OFA Short Course), Greater Columbus Convention Center. Visit


NY Now, The Market for Home + Lifestyle, Jacob K. Javits Convention Center and Pier 94. Call 800-272-SHOW or visit





California Gift Show, Los Angeles Convention Center. Visit

JULY 29-AUGUST 1, MONTEREY, CA CalFlowers Fun ’N Sun Convention, Monterey Marriott. Call the California Association of Flower Growers and Shippers at 831-479-4912 or visit

MARCH 15, PIERRE, SD South Dakota Florist Association, program includes Wedding Designs with Alex Jackson, Ramkota Hotel. Call Renee Polreis at 800-996-4323.

MARCH 15, WICHITA, KS Valley Floral Company, Spring Open House with Vonda LaFever. Call Jerry Yocum at 800-657-2553.

MARCH 20-22, GREEN BAY, WI WUMFA (Wisconsin Upper Michigan Floral Association) Annual Convention, program includes Weddings & Events with Kevin Ylvisaker, Radisson Hotel & Conference Center. Call Rod Crittenden at 517-5750110 or visit

MARCH 29, DECATUR, IL Illinois State Florist Association, program includes Wedding Designs with Vonda LaFever, Decatur Conference Center. Call Michelle O’Neal Babicky at 217-4988882.

NORTHEAST REGION MARCH 14-15, GROTON, CT Northeast Floral Expo, Mystic Marriott Hotel. Call the Connecticut Florists Association at 800-352-6946 or visit

FEBRUARY 2015 65

events APRIL 12, ORONO, ME Maine State Florist Association, program includes Everyday Designs for Spring with Julie Poeltler, Black Bear Inn. Call Karen Duncan at 207-769-2731.


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JULY 17-19, SUGAR LAND, TX Texas State Florists’ Association Convention, Marriott Sugar Land Hotel. Visit

SOUTHEAST REGION MARCH 8, PINE MOUNTAIN, GA Georgia State Florist Association, program includes Wedding Designs with Alex Jackson, The Lodge at Calloway Gardens. Call Randy Wooten at 912-383-6223.

MARCH 15, SILVER SPRING, MD Potomac Floral Wholesale, program includes Wedding Designs with John Hosek. Call David Powers at 301-589-4747.

APRIL 10-12, BIRMINGHAM, AL AIFD 2015 Southern Conference (“Botanical Bliss”), Aloft Hotel-Rosewood Hall. Contact conference chairs Mandy Majerik (205-324-2663) or Kevin Hinton (662255-6530) or visit


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JUNE 14, ORLANDO, FL Florida State Florist Association, program includes Party Designs with Joyce MasonMonheim, Caribe-Royale Resort. Call Len Buckett at 321-633-5499.


AUGUST 15, GREENSBORO, NC North Carolina State Florist Association, program includes Party Designs with Gerard Toh, Embassy Suites. Call Charlie Jordan at 336-855-5408.


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JULY 29-AUGUST 1, MONTEREY, CA CalFlowers Fun ’N Sun Convention, Monterey Marriott. Call the California Association of Flower Growers and Shippers at 831-479-4912 or visit


See Us In Action On

Portland, Oregon

where to buy

continued on page 70

For more information on merchandise featured in Flowers&, contact the supplier directly. Direct links to most suppliers can be found on the Flowers& website, Use the links under “Advertisers in This Issue” or the link to our searchable, online Buyers’ Guide at the top of the Flowers& home page.




page 51 24-inch mâché wreath form, Smithers-Oasis.

HEAVENLY SPHERES, pages 52-53 36-inch Raquette, Smithers-Oasis. James Storie aranthera orchids and dieffenbachia leaves, Green Point.

pg 30

pages 8-9 ®

Oasis ECOssentials six-inch cylinder, midollino sticks, midollino butterflies, and beaded wire, Smithers-Oasis.




Birdcage and permanent flowering sakura and peach branches, Jamali.

pages 15-20 Tapered Vase in tangerine, Container Source. Flat wire, Smithers-Oasis.



Essentials Square Bowl in light green and midollino sticks in strong pink, Smithers-Oasis.

page 34

pages 23-24 Irises, Sun Valley. Weathered Oak Planter, Syndicate Sales. Nest of vine and grasses, Sullivans. Wired wool, Accent Décor. Baobab pods, Knud Nielsen.

pages 42-56 Tropical flowers and foliages, Green Point. Specialty foam products, Smithers-Oasis.

LEAF DRAPE, page 43 Double-sided tape, Smithers-Oasis. Anthuriums and uluhe fern curls, Green Point.

WARM AND BRIGHT, page 44 Bromeliads and cut tropical flowers and foliages, Green Point. Sculpting Sheet, Smithers-Oasis. Dixon Pins, Dixon Products.

SPRING FEVER! pages 28-41



Square glass bowl, Accent Décor.

page 45


pg 35


page 35

pages 30-31

Bamboo cubes, Teleflora. Nest of vine and grasses and faux eggs, Sullivans. Natural guinea hen plumage feathers, Moonlight Feather.

Obake anthuriums, James Storie and oncidium orchids, uluhe fern curls, hanging heliconias, beehive ginger (Zingiber spectabile), and tropical foliage, Green Point. 27-inch Raquettes Holder, Smithers-Oasis.



page 36

pages 46-47

Pretty Petal vases, Teleflora. White permanent flowering peach branch, Jamali.

Essentials Square Bowls in black, Ring Holders, foam cross and Standing Sphere, Smithers-Oasis. Poly Pebbles, American Floral Container, Inc.

Glass cubes, Teleflora. Aluminum wire in tangerine, Smithers-Oasis.

EGG SALAD, page 38 Artificial eggs, Sullivans.

SWEET DREAMS, pages 48-49


WINDOW BOX, page 59

Stemmed cylinder, Diamond Star. Low glass bowl and pink crushed glass, Accent Décor.

FEATURED SUPPLIERS Accent Décor, Inc. Call 800-385-5114 or visit American Floral Container, Inc. Call 800-448-0843 or visit Container Source. Call 800-499-6128 or visit Dixon Products. Call 800-671-7570 or visit Green Point Nurseries. Call 800-717-4456 or visit Jamali Garden and Floral Supply. Call 212-979-0108 or visit Knud Nielsen. Call 800-633-1682 or visit Moonlight Feather. Call 800-468-6048 or visit Smithers-Oasis. Call 800-321-8286 or visit Sullivans, Inc. Call 800-456-4568 or visit The Sun Valley Group. Call 800-747-0396 or visit Syndicate Sales. Call 800-428-0515 or visit


Teleflora. Call 800-333-0205 or visit


page 50

pages 40-41

Mâché wreath form, Smithers-Oasis.

Satin Collection pot, Teleflora.

Noble Urn, Teleflora.

36-inch Raquettes Holder, Smithers-Oasis.

Bamboo rectangles, Teleflora.

page 32

page 56

FEBRUARY 2015 67

wholesaler connection ARIZONA PHOENIX Conroy Wholesale Florist The Roy Houff Company CALIFORNIA FRESNO Designer Flower Center INGLEWOOD American Magazines & Books OAKLAND Piazza International Floral SACRAMENTO Flora Fresh SAN DIEGO San Diego Florist Supplies SANTA ROSA Sequoia Floral International FLORIDA PENSACOLA American Floral Wholesale of Pensacola Carlstedt’s, LLC GEORGIA OMEGA Hornbuckle Wholesale Florist HAWAII HONOLULU Flora-Dec Sales ILLINOIS CHICAGO The Roy Houff Company NORMAL The Roy Houff Company WHEELING The Roy Houff Company

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PENNSYLVANIA PITTSBURGH Keystone Ribbon & Floral Pittsburgh Cut Flower Company SOUTH DAKOTA SIOUX FALLS North American Wholesale Florist, Inc. TENNESSEE NASHVILLE The Roy Houff Company



Reward without the Risk we promise!

TEXAS HOUSTON Pikes Peak of Texas Southern Floral Company UTAH SALT LAKE CITY Ensign Wholesale Floral VIRGINIA NORFOLK The Roy Houff Company RICHMOND The Roy Houff Company WASHINGTON TACOMA Washington Floral Service CANADA BURNABY, BC Kirby/Signature Floral Supply MALAYSIA SELANGOR Worldwide Floral Services

Sell Flowers& in your store! for extra profits Select any quantity— no minimum Whatever you don’t sell we buy back! Yes, it really is that simple.

Call 800-321-2665

SINGAPORE Worldwide Floral Services

Visit us online for a taste of Flowers& quality.


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