Check out these tried-and-true cut-flower performers -- recommended by experts Kate Swift and Marilyn Cedaroth -- for summer arrangements that will last.
Cedar Farm in Ghent, New York, is a cut-flower business that combines the talents of Kate Swift and Marilyn Cederoth, sisters who are dedicated to supplying zinnias throughout New York's Hudson Valley and beyond into the Berkshires.
New on the color spectrum, Celosia 'Persimmon' is the sort of vivid color that florists crave, plus it's strong in the field.
Learn more about growing celosia.
Adding to the rainbow for cockscombs, Celosia 'Jura Salmon' is strong and uniform in the growing field.
Specially bred for florists, Celosia 'Karume Rose' develops a sizeable comb later in the season, becoming what Kate calls a "scream-in-your-face" pink.
A novelty on the market, snapdragon (Antirrhinum 'Chantilly') faces upward rather looking downward as snapdragons did in the past.
Playing with color is everything in a bouquet, so Marilyn harnessed Amaranthus 'Pygmy Torch', Dahlia 'Akita', and 'Chantilly' snapdragon to combine with a mystery gladiolus and explore a shade of melon rarely seen.
Learn more about amaranth.
The florists shared their trick of stripping sunflower petals to create "green sunflowers." Marilyn picked up on the technique and combined the stripped sunflowers with Celosia 'Persimmon', Celosia 'Spring Green', brown-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia triloba), kale, and artichoke to whip up a bouquet.
Combined with Celosia 'Spring Green', Amaranthus 'Tom Thumb', Hydrangea 'Unique', Hydrangea 'White Dome', foxglove (Digitalis grandiflora), dahlias 'Smarty Pants' and 'Arabian Nights', and lisianthus (Eustoma 'Echo Blue'), Marilyn bundled several alliums together to give them weight.
Marilyn went asymmetric with this arrangement of Gladiolus callianthus, Dahlia 'Babylon', Angelica gigas, papyrus (Cyperus), millet 'Limelight', Cryptomeria, Amaranthus 'Hanging Green', and Asclepias 'Silky' pods.
Quite accidentally, Kate discovered that Celosia 'Spring Green' turns "an amazing neon hue" when sheltered from direct sun. In the future, she plans to give it the benefit of shade cloth
It's nearly impossible to capture the deep royal purple hue of Celosia 'Purple Red' with a camera.
Trends cycle around in the florist business. Amaranthus 'Hanging Green' is an old-fashioned cut flower that's enjoying a new wave of fame.
For an autumn accent in arrangements, florists rely on Amaranthus 'Hanging Red'.
Everyone craves color, but Gladiolus callianthus (formerly called Acidanthera satiates
another sense -- it emits a romantically sweet scent that becomes richer after dark.
Not only does it mimic a rosebud, but lisianthus (Eustoma 'Blue Rim') is long-lasting as a cut flower.