My daughter is getting married in September and wants me to grow flowers for her bouquet and arrangements. yikes, I am a medium experienced gardner at best. I live in Zone 4-5 (Michigan). any thoughts as to what I should plant this spring? To complicate matters, the wedding will be held at a site about an hours drive away...how is the best way to transport these flowers? Oh, the wedding is to be fairly casual, and she would like a multi-colored bouguet. Thanks so much for any ideas you might have!!!
What a task you've been set!. Now, as I'm based in the U.K I'm not too sure what your climate will be so this will be broadly based on our weather here........which is quite a mixed bag.
There is a really good book out called 'Grow your own cut flowers' by Sarah Raven published by BBC Worldwide which could prove helpful.(Amazon are brilliant at getting books from overseas) She suggests flowers such as sweet peas, scabious and snapdragons, dahlias and zinnias but you will need to concentrate on annuals and make sure no biennials creep in as they will not flower in time. The lovely sweetpea colours, with the lilac-blue of the scabious and the lipstick pink of the zinnias would look fantastic, you could even pop a few florist bought freesias and roses in just for good measure. But if can get hold of this book, it will be of help I'm sure.
You may consider making a tied wedding bouquet, where the flowers are all kept on their natural stems and not wired. These are very popular at the moment and the beauty of these are they can be transported in a small pot of water and just taken out before the ceremony (make sure you take something to wipe the stems with)If you do decide to wire the stems, then make sure you spray them well with water and then cover them in a tent of cellophane and keep somewhere cool.
You will have to condition the flowers you cut from your garden very well. The night before, when it has cooled down and then stand in cold water overnight before using. There are many different methods of conditioning flowers depending on whether they are soft stemmed, woody, hollow etc. so you may be advised to get a book from the library, as the success of your bouquet will be down to the conditioning of the flowers and foliages used.
Try out certain flowers the week before to see how long they last once cut and conditioned. It's best to know this before the big day.
I do hope this has helped you.