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31/08/2014 at 15:50

Hello!

My very good friend is getting married on 20th June 2015 and wants a 'homemade' themed wedding. Part of that is to have home grown flowers as decoration (not sure about bouquets...it's a 'maybe'). The amount that they should save is a real plus too!

I have said that I will dedicate as much of my garden as possible to growing whatever she wants for the wedding.

The only issue is that neither of us are gardeners! We've done bedding plants and easy stuff but as far as starting from scratch - haven't a clue!

She would like whites, pinks, purples and blues.

So, please give us as much tips and advice as you can muster! It's all welcome!

p.s - neither of us have greenhouses but are willing to invest in the little pvc kind.

THANK YOU!

31/08/2014 at 16:16
Sweet peas are a must! The smelly kind.
31/08/2014 at 16:25

I was going to say sweet peas too. I like the delicate nature of willowy sweet peas and sweet williams, but I'm old fashioned! SW kaleidoscope would look lovely in a display I think.

31/08/2014 at 16:27

Why don't you and your friend first search pics of such bouquets, very popular now and then your friend will see what actual flowers she loves and then we can advise from there  Will you be doing bridesmaids,button holes, table decorations too? If yes how many and then we can advise what plants and how many you need to get going with 

 

31/08/2014 at 17:27

Aw - thanks so much! Yes, we've already bought some sweet pea seeds as those are my fave and I kind of pushed her towards them!

I think I will ask her to join the forum and see if she can shed more light on what she actually wants as all I know is that she does NOT want anything red, yellow or orange.

31/08/2014 at 17:45

If you can get cornflowers to bloom by then, there's nothing to match their deep, clear blue. Or  Love-in-a-mist (nigella) is pretty. Lavender should be in bloom then and can add scent and colour, but you can't grow it from seed in a season.Maybe you can find a friend with a lavender bush?

At our daughter's  wedding we made all the buttonholes and corsages for the main wedding party and several guests too. If you get the proper florist's tape and wire, it's really not difficult. If you want to know more about this, just ask me. We did buy some flowers - cream rosebuds from a supermarket - and added other stuff from gardens, plus pretty ribbons etc. 

31/08/2014 at 18:21
Sometimes if you go to a garden centre they will do you a good deal on plants suitable for the tables if you buy lots.
31/08/2014 at 18:49
Hi I am the friend
I have sweet peas
linaria
candytuft
wild flowers
Stock
dianthus
and nemophila five spot
im hopping to do centre pieces and decorations
not sure what else
31/08/2014 at 19:36

Hi Jodie

 

We would like to know if we NEED to invest in greenhouses, best times to sow the seeds and any tips on the best feed etc......THANKS IN ADVANCE!

 

31/08/2014 at 20:00

I would add cosmos and Virginia stock to the list.

01/09/2014 at 09:39

Most of those mentioned will germinate out of doors in a seed bed, but you'll get more reliable results if you start them off indoors in seed trays, and you'll be less at the mercy of our variable seasons.

You might be able to find space  for seed trays somewhere in the house (conservatory? windowsill?) or in a garage or shed if you can arrange a place with enough light.  Once the seeds are germinated, you should be able to plant them outdoors or tranfer them to pots or modules until they get a bit bigger. These would probably be OK in a sheltered corner of the garden. The seed packets will give you more detail on when and how to plant. If you do need a dedicated space, those plastic mini-greenhouse are probably the cheapest way. Or find a friend with a greenhouse?

Don't be afraid to have a fallback plan. For a start, remember that you can buy trays of seedlings ready to plant out. This year my sweet pea seeds didn't germinate so I bought a tray of a dozen little plants from the local shop, which romped away and gave a  lovely display. They're still home grown, all you're doing is let someone start them off for you.

And if even that fails,  a few bunches of cut flowers from your local market or supermarket can always be bought at the last minute to top up. Another way of cheating is to keep an eye on other people's gardens - I've just let a neighbour cut some of my blue hydrangeas for wedding decorations in the church.

And please do let us know how it all goes!

01/09/2014 at 10:24

You could include some perennial plants of alchemilla mollis in your garden to give a lovely lime green frothy feel to your flower arrangements.  This could be planted now and should be in flower for next year.It's a pity it may be just a bit too late for cow parsley to be at its best. It will depend on the weather at the time.

01/09/2014 at 10:44

on feeding, don't feed them till spring, they won't grow much over the winter. Should be fine with basic compost - add some to the soil if you sow outdoors. I would grow the wildflower seeds separate from the rest, they don't need as much cossetting as cultivated plants, just a bit of compost in the soil. Once your other plants are growing strongly in spring, feed them occasionally with multi-purpose feed then when they are coming into flower, switch to tomato feed to get lots of blooms. Check out the advice on growing sweet peas (plenty on threads on this forum) to make sure you get the best out of them

01/09/2014 at 20:17

Thanks so much everyone! Loads to be getting on with then Jodie!

Sorry if I sound a bit dense - but what does 'cosseting' mean?

Good idea with a back up plan and yes, we can always buy trays of plants if our seeds don't germinate..... just wondering - how long does it take for the seeds to germinate? Or are all flowers different?

I can't wait to get going now! Just need to decide where in the garden to dig the flowerbeds as have none at the moment!

01/09/2014 at 20:46

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2012/may/18/alys-fowler-annuals-august-wedding

useful article here - advice for growing for a June wedding about halfway down! I'd say do a few sowings a few weeks apart, and grow a mixture, then you're more likely to have plants in flower at the right time. Good luck! 

01/09/2014 at 21:18
You could always gather flowers too, lilac trees could still be in flower then, i often cut some from the trees alongside the canal towpath.

Dont neglect foilage, it really bulks things up and makes it go further

This is a really lovely idea, good luck
01/09/2014 at 21:24

Don't forget that you will need lots of vases.

You can get some nice  vintage vases off of Ebay, and also by browsing the charity shops. I picked up a 6 inch cut crystal vase last week for £1.50.

 

01/09/2014 at 21:34

Knowing my luck - if I went scavenging for flowers/foliage...I'd end up picking something poisonous without realising!!!

Well, I've been diligently keeping and washing out sauce and jam jars as Jodie wants a rustic/country feel - think we are going to try painting a few or just dressing them with ribbons. 

01/09/2014 at 21:34
Just thought, ranunculus and anemone de caan or similar will be in flower then, not sure what/ if you have a colour in mind, but the white ones are gorge
01/09/2014 at 21:39

cossetting -  means "spoiling/ pampering/indulging" same as for (some) small children! now you've got the gardening bug you too will soon be talking about plants like most people talk about people! the cultivated plants we grow in our gardens are quite sensitive things compared to their wild cousins and need a lot more care. Wildflowers just get on with growing, as long as the conditions are favourable. We have to nurse the cultivated ones along a bit - they don't like it too cold, wilt at the first sign of drought, want regular feeding and are useless at repelling the various pests intent on eating them. That's why I would keep the wild flowers separate to the other varieties - in theory at least, as long as you follow the instructions on the packet, you should be able to leave them to their own devices and concentrate on their much more demanding relatives.

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