Sunday, November 18, 2018

Temecula Valley Garden Club

We were so excited to share our passion for Proteas with over 75 members of the Temecula Valley Garden Club. Hands down that had to be one of our favorite events this month. Our presentation consisted of all the things we love so much, the amazing array of proteas being grown here in California, growing tips and the delicious ways we arrange them… bouquets, designs and wreaths.

As many of you may know, autumn is the best time of the year to plant proteas. Plants that are established in the fall and winter grow faster in the spring and require less water when summer comes. This event gave us an excuse to bring along some plants, bouquets and wreaths, and for the members to take home and enjoy.

The Temecula Valley Garden Club is a nonprofit organization with 160 members, that aims to encourage interest in home gardening, promote better horticultural practices, conserve natural resources and aid civic groups. It also provides a wonderful place for those who share a common interest in gardening, to become acquainted and develop meaningful friendships.

Saturday, November 17, 2018

San Diego Farm & Nursery Expo

Cultivating Answers for Southern California Agriculture

When it comes to farmers, nurserymen, and industry professionals we always enjoy sharing and exchanging information about protea farming in California. And what could be a better opportunity then rallying with the California Protea Association and our friends at the San Diego County Farm Bureau for the 4th annual Farm and Nursery Expo held at the Del Mar Fairgrounds. This educational event brought farmers and vendors together to network and meet with top researchers and authorities who provided attendees with lots of valuable resources. In addition, seminars were held on a variety of topics such as water runoff regulations, labor issues, squirrel & gopher management and more.

The Cornucopia

It's time for another glimpse at our favorite ‘symbol of the harvest’… the Cornucopia or also called a horn of plenty. It was traditionally made of a goat's horn overflowing with fruits, flowers and grains of the harvest.

At what time the cornucopia made its way into our country's consciousness as a Thanksgiving holiday symbol is difficult to say. But with its meaning of abundance, prosperity and good fortune, the horn of plenty is now a symbol of Americans’ thoughts of thankfulness.

Cornucopias have become customary fall centerpieces and usually feature a horn-like basket or container. Filled with autumn leaves and foliage, flowers, pods and cones, and even fresh fruits, they make a lovely holiday display. Whether referred to as a cornucopia or horn of plenty… the meaning of this ancient symbol still resonates today.

Friday, November 2, 2018

Día de los Muertos

Just like witches, black cats and pumpkins are typical symbols of Halloween, sugar skulls, marigolds and monarch butterflies are associated with Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. However, as Halloween is celebrated October 31st, the Day of the Dead is celebrated on November 2nd.

Día de los Muertos originated in Mexico and Central America where native tribes, including Aztec, Maya and Toltec, had specific times when they honored their loved ones based on whether the deceased was an adult or a child. When the Spanish arrived, this ritual of memorializing the dead became two holidays: All Saints Day on November 1st and All Soul’s Day on the 2nd. Día de los Muertos is typically celebrated on the 1st as a day to remember children who have passed away, and the 2nd to honor adults.

These ancient tribes believed that death was part of the journey of life. Rather than death ending life, they believed that new life came from death. This cycle is often associated with the cyclical nature of agriculture, like crops grow from the ground where the last crop lies buried.

Día de los Muertos is an occasion to remember and celebrate the lives of departed loved ones. And as with many celebrations, Día de los Muertos is filled with music and dancing. The ofrenda, is the most recognized symbol. This temporary altar is a way for families to honor their loved ones and provide them what they love while on their journey.

Portraits of the deceased, along with items that belonged to them are placed on the altar. The cempasúchil, a variety of marigold flower native to Mexico, is often placed on ofrendas and around graves. Their vibrant color petals are used to make a path that leads the spirits from the cemetery to their families’ homes. Plus, the marigold’s distinct smell when paired with the right kind of candle, allows the departed to return for a brief short time to enjoy the pleasures of life once more.

Monarch butterflies play a role in it because they are believed to hold the spirits of the departed. This belief stems from the fact that the first monarchs arrive in Mexico for the winter on November 1st, which coincides with Día de los Muertos. Calaveritas de azucar, or sugar skulls, along with toys, are left on the altars for children who have passed. The skull is used not as gruesome symbol but rather as a whimsical reminder of the circle of life.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Flower News: Octobers’s Articles and Blogs of Interest from Around the World

October Tree of the Month: Fire-Wheel Tree

“Fire-wheel Tree” may seem like a strange name for a tree, until you see its fiery-red, circular-shaped, flower clusters (called umbels), which look like flaming bicycle wheels!

3-inch long flowers are the “spokes” of each wheel (6 to 20 flowers per umbel); these radiate out from the umbel’s central “hub” and bear at their ends (at the “rim”) globular yellow tips where the floral organs are located. The flowering time is usually in autumn but can occur sporadically at other times of the year. The nectar is wonderfully sweet - attracting hungry moths for pollination.

Read more here.


Cal Poly students begin harvesting flowers
to decorate school’s 2019 Rose Parade float

Construction on the Cal Poly Rose Parade float is well underway. But this past week, work got started on another — perhaps more subtle — aspect of the float: harvesting the flowers that will decorate this year’s entry.

Students grow and harvest a portion of the plants from the on-campus Rose Float flower fields. These include marigolds, strawflower and statice, which will be used as colorful decorations.

Read more here.


7 Must-Try Floral Techniques to add Beauty
with Branches

Autumn is awesome with possibilities for adding seasonal materials to your floral arrangements.

But there’s more to creating captivating fall flower designs than just incorporating the colors and textures of the season.

Adding a linear element like branches allows you to expand the space of a floral composition. You’re adding dimension while creating a visual connection to the outdoors.

Here are seven techniques (plus a twig-tree project from Smithers-Oasis Floral Design Director Kevin Ylvisaker AIFD, PFCI you can try) that will enable you to turn twigs and branches into seasonal beauty your customers will want to bring indoors.

Read more here.


Rose Parade efforts in full swing

Plans for the first two Certified CA Grown entries at the 2019 Tournament of Roses Parade are already underway, and the ramp up to the New Year’s Day tradition has begun.

The entries from Cal Poly Universities and FTD Companies Inc. – the first to announce so far – will both feature CA Grown flowers and foliage. Additional CA Grown entries will be announced in coming weeks, including a number of equine entries.

Read more here.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Fall Inspiration: Pumpkins and Protea Pair Perfectly

The vibes your autumn decor gives off depends entirely on what you pair them with. While we typically associate pumpkins with Halloween they're suitable for so much more. Left whole, they can sit at many angles to give everyone at the table a beautiful view. Cut open, they make excellent containers for flowers when hollowed out. While most popular in hues of orange, white and green, pumpkins offer wonderful new options for color schemes, especially when they are paired with protea. Use these pumpkin centerpiece ideas as your inspiration this fall.

Friday, October 26, 2018

Petal it Forward 2018

The floral industry hit the streets once again on October 24th to Petal It Forward, and Temecula was among 410 cities in all the 50 states, plus Washington D.C. where florists, wholesalers and farmers brightened the days of random merchants, passersby and even firefighters. It was part of the nationwide ‘Petal it Forward’ program, sponsored by the Society of American Florists which calls attention to the variety of flowers and foliage grown in the U.S. and the positive, instant impact of giving and receiving flowers. This feel-good campaign helps farmers, wholesalers and retailers connect with their local communities and generates positive PR, for their businesses and the industry at large.

Petal It Forward teams from 410 cities not only spread happiness to lucky people who received the flowers but arms the recipients with the tools they needed to Petal It Forward and spread happiness to others: An extra flower bouquet to share with a friend, co-worker or someone they don't know. The idea: That it's not only fun to receive flowers and kindness, but it feels good to give. We joined in on the fun and headed to Old Town Temecula to help revel in the power of flowers and spread some happiness too!

This was a win-win for all the happiness ambassadors but, more importantly, it was a win for creating positive buzz around flowers in the communities that were reached.