If you're planning a wedding, you know how costly the perfect big day having can be. To save money, consider cutting out the florist, which can cost anywhere between $500 and $1080. When you grow your own wedding flowers, you can easily reduce costs and have fabulous flowers to use for the bouquet, boutonnieres, centerpieces and more.
To plan right and save money, look at the insider secrets below.
1. Pick the Right Flowers
Before you buy seeds or start picking a spot for your garden, you need to know which types of flowers to grow. Not only do you need flowers that fit your theme, but they also need to have long and sturdy stems, perfect for sitting in a vase or arranging into a bouquet.
Keep in mind you'll have to use annually blooming flowers in your decor. While perennials can be beautiful, they focus on growing strong roots the first year, not developing sturdier stems until two or three years in bloom. If you absolutely must have perennials, like day-lilies or phlox, use them for boutonnieres, which see less wear.
2. Consider the Timing
Different flowers bloom in different seasons, with fewer options to choose from in winter. If you already have seeds, look at the packet instructions for the time of year to plant. As a handy guide, take a look at the popular wedding flowers that bloom in each season:
- Spring: Daffodils, apple blossoms, peonies, roses, tulips and lilacs.
- Summer: Orchids, dahlias, zinnias, freesia, sunflowers and daisies.
- Autumn: Calla lilies, marigolds, sunflowers, chrysanthemums, roses and yarrow.
- Winter: Jasmine, holly, gardenias, poinsettias, camellias and mini gerberas.
Choosing the right flower for the season will ensure they bloom on time and look stunning.
3. Get Started Inside
You don't have to rush outside to begin planting. Instead, create an indoor setup with small pots. Use high-quality soil and water often, as the seeds will always need to stay moist. As your seeds begin to germinate, you can keep an eye on the process.
The seed packet, or a quick online search, will tell you when germination should happen. Some flowers can take up to a month to sprout, so be patient.
4. Find a Sunny Spot
Once your seedlings begin to push through the soil and expose themselves to light, it's time to take them outdoors. Find a spot that gets plenty of sun but won't collect excess water. Be sure to clear any weeds before planting your seedlings.
Once planted, you'll need to support, feed and maintain your plants. Add stakes for plants like sweet peas, which need support to grow up. You should also add fertilizer — either store-bought or homemade. If you decide to make your own, there are plenty of organic recipes you can follow.
5. Harvest with Care
When your plants begin to flower, you'll need to regularly chop off dead flower heads to ensure they keep producing. Once you're ready to harvest for your wedding, bring clean buckets and a sharp pair of scissors. Cut the stems at a 45-degree angle and remove stray leaves before placing in the bucket.
The best time of day to harvest flowers is in the morning when the stems are fully turgid (filled with water). The flowers will also be coated with morning dew, making them even more beautiful and fragrant as you walk through the garden.
6. Design an Arrangement
You have your flowers — so now what? It's time to arrange them! Seek a variety of textures and shapes when mixing your flowers. Create a balance between what's simple and what's visually stunning.
Once you've picked your assortment, it's time to assemble. Select a base and fill the inside with a chicken wire foundation. The wire will hold your flowers in place as you find the perfect design.
Growing Your Own Wedding Flowers
Weddings are expensive, with floral arrangements making up a large chunk of the price tag. While you might save money with imported flowers, they can sometimes be treated with harmful pesticides. By growing your own flowers, you can save a lot of money while also giving a personal touch to the look of your wedding.