Did You
Know?
Yves Piaget can substitute for peonies in a bouquet.
Leonidas not Leonides!
October 19, 2006
I noted in a recent blog that I had an advance copy of the new book, "Flower Confidential: The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful in the Business of Flowers," by Amy Stewart.

This book has an amazing inside view of the flower producing industry from breeding to selling.

But Amy you need to get your flower names right...

She talks about a beautiful rose called "Leonides" - and I'm such a stickler for detail that I asked the publisher's rep to correct it - it's supposed to be "Leonidas!"

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This rose is a chocolate color so apparently the Meilland company, the French rose breeders, named it after the Belgian chocolate company.

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But in spite of this (she also calls Black Baccara, a black rose that we also grow, Black Baccarat). Oh well, it commonly has different pet names among my customers. One of them calls it Black Bacardi. I kinda like that. Well for that matter Black Baccarat isn't so bad either.

Our oddball taupe-raw silk-gray-beige rose Metallina is also fondly known to some as Metallica.

Whatever helps you remember!

"I Heard the Snail Chewing the Passionflower Vine..."
October 17, 2006
Anne Ryan had a table at the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association convention over the weekend, and I kept her company part of the time. She was promoting her beautiful book, "Design on a Lime," which was fun because she probably had one of the most beautiful books there.

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Above: Bruce's autumn bouquet at the flower market with our hybrid lily "Brindisi."

I got an advance copy of Amy Stewart's new book, "Flower Confidential: The Good, the Bad, and the Beautiful in the Business of Flowers." I think it will ruffle a few petals out there in the flower world... It's sort of in the mode of "Fast Food Nation" except that she is very positive about flowers and their value to people.

It's a little bit like "The Orchid Thief" too because it profiles some of the interesting personalities such as the guy who developed the famous "Stargazer" lily.

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Above: Another creation by Bruce, this time his hallway rendition of a gothic graveyard, with trailing lichens and photos of interesting gravestones. Photos do NOT do this justice, you have to come and see it.

My friend Tricia was telling me today about the local school auction's decorating committee. It seems they were trying to get some pampas grass for their decor, and finding it very expensive. A parent at the school said, "no problem, just come to my yard and you can have all you want." Well, the night before they were to come and glean her pampas grass, it mysteriously all disappeared... undoubtedly ripped off by the midnight flower thieves who are out their harvesting hydrangeas and other tempting freebies from peoples' yards...

Here's me with my beautiful wrist corsage that was supposed to be for my son's date to homecoming, but he declined to use it (!!!what's wrong with that kid!!!) So it was our 25th wedding anniversary and I wore it out to dinner, and also at several at-home dinners ever since! And it's still gorgeous after several days. It has Wendy spray roses, hydrangeas (starting to wilt!), fern and some kind of cool variegated leaves. Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

And today is the funeral for Donna Leitz, owner of Milwaukie Floral, at 1:00 at Milwaukie Lutheran. Donna and her late husband Gene were the king and queen bee of florists and it's truly the end of an era. Many people in the flower biz today got their start at Milwaukie Floral. I'm sure there will be a lot of beautiful flowers and florist friends there today.

I almost forgot to explain the title...while Anne and I were at the booksellers convention this crazy Englishman from a map company came up and we gave him a rose. So he regaled us with tales including the time from his childhood in rural England when he couldn't sleep because of this loud unusual noise...which turned out to be a snail eating the passionflower vine outside his window........mad, bad, and dangerous to know???????

Busy Weekend
October 9, 2006
Wow, the fall Flower Market design show was great. Even though a cold front moved through and everybody thought it was going to be 80 degrees (oops, weatherman), I heard a lot of positive comments.

Did I mention the flower display at Peterkort Roses was incredible?? Here's Norman and all the lovelies. We displayed about 40 varieties of roses and lilies.

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It was fun to see everybody, including many of our customers such as Harry R. and his wife from Jansen in Longview, the ladies from Keizer Florist, Stuart and his employees from Jackson & Adolph in Portland, Marti and her employees from Burkhardts in Hillsboro, and so many more. Broadway Floral and Burlingame Florist had large contingents in attendance.

We got a brand new sign for our flower market stall and also had a poster of all our varieties. I gave out bookmarks!

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Some of the grower's market notables who came by included Ann and Leslie, plus Leslie's daughter, from Alderbrook Gardens.

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It was good to see Kay E. who is the retired market manager from Oregon Flower Growers.

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Anne Ryan was there selling and signing her book "Design on a Lime." She signed my copy!!!!

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Ann and Jim from Gifford's mentioned that they have a new web site in addition to their shop site; the new one is just for weddings. Look on my Links page for Gifford's Weddings to see their new site.

And...TOMORROW (Tuesday Oct. 10) MORNING...at 9-10 a.m. on AM Northwest Jordan G. of Blum Design in Flowers will be doing fall flowers - check it out! She'll be using lilies, (from us!) also lots of pumpkins and gourds! Bloomin' Delights at the grower's market I noticed had lots of beautiful ones.

In My Vase
October 2, 2006
Wow, the roses are so beautiful now at the end of summer...I couldn't resist making up a bunch of bouquets......

We went to dinner on Saturday at some friends' so I brought them a bouquet of Yves Piaget, some spray roses, and some Biedermeier.

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Then I got extremely artistic with these Juliet. We are testing this variety for the David Austin company. I love the translucent effect.

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THEN... today at the market I was getting ready to toss a bouquet (that's throw away, not toss as in a bridal bouquet...we're having our 25th anniversary tomorrow and I don't even remember who CAUGHT my bouquet!)...

ANYWAY, the Alexandra still looked so totally beautiful and I had some Conca d'Or oriental lilies so I put them together and it looks really super!

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This is all soothing stuff for the busy week ahead...Tuesday anniversary, not sure what we're even doing, I do have choir practice, maybe I should call Jill and let her know I can't make it...then Thursday the First Thursday Floral Design as Art show from 6 to 9 at the Floral Design Institute Creative Center...then Friday lunch with two smart CPAs I used to work with in my former life at PDC....then Saturday make a HUGE, MEGA, FANTASTIC display of roses and lilies for the Sunday Portland Flower Market design show. I'll be one wilted rosebud by Sunday night!

News Twigs
October 1, 2006
Last week was full of little items. Gifford's Flowers was in the paper with an article about their temporary move across the street while their former building is being redeveloped. I told Jim G. that before reading it I didn't know that their shop used to be on the east side.

The fall/winter Oregon Bride magazine contains some beautiful flower pictures by local designers. Marti, owner of Burkhardt's on 185th on the west side, showed me the white rose bouquet with japhet orchids featured in the "High Contrast" section, where they talk about accessorizing with black. There is a black gown as well. For the bride? It looks like a bridal gown, but solid black. Burkhardts also has a kissing ball and a boutonniere further into the mag in the "Hot Chocolate" section.

Also in "Hot Chocolate" is a lovely Flowerlab bouquet with Yves Piaget roses. Jill of Starflower did a ring bearer pillow covered with small green poms (called Kermits), and she did a green boutonniere with equisetum. Kim of Geranium Lake designed a Tiffany blue hydrangea bouquet with muscari, and a boutonniere.

Francoise Weeks' nostalgic mixed flower bouquet is featured in the "Past Perfect" section with retro wedding dresses.

Del of Garside Florist in Vancouver announced his retirement. His daughter and son in law have taken over the day to day operations of the shop, and he will no longer be making the flower market rounds. We will miss him - but I have a feeling we will still see Del down there once in a while.

Congratulations to Monty of A Fine Flower Company for a wonderful presentation to the Portland Garden Club recently. Retired owner of Flowers Tommy Luke, Dick S., attended and noted that, "Monty's designs are so beautiful, and he uses unexpected combinations that work extremely well. It was outstanding."

Doug of Broadway Floral on NE Broadway noted that finally the ground floor retail space in the building surrounding their store is coming together - as a market similar to the old Irvington Market.

Doug and Janice have endured several years of upheaval as all the properties on their block (the old Farrell's for one) were bought by a developer, then a multi-story building constructed around them. While they operated their business...

Originally Zupan's was to occupy the ground floor, but that fell through. This new idea will be great because the building owner approached local Broadway merchants such as Broadway Floral and Great Wine Buys, who have agreed to set up shop inside the market. That's what I call synergy!

The Portland Marathon is today...and a lot of our roses will be part of the event...yesterday Primitivo delivered thousands of them to the Park Blocks rendezvous. This beautiful touch is courtesy of Milwaukie Floral

The last twiglet of news is this photo from London outside a shop downtown. These are birch branches sprayed violet and tied to the wrought iron fence to soften it and call attention to the shop door on the left.

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