Fran says: “I had heard about Jane’s artistry with flowers for many years from several sources. We also had some mutual friends. So when we passed each other at our local Farmer’s Market, we would chat for a few moments. When I approached Jane about doing a post for GGW last fall and she responded positively, I was thrilled. She is a welcome addition to our roster of contributors!”
My love of gardening and flowers went more than a little wild when I discovered flower arranging: first as a sport, then as an art and later as a career. Trees captured me for their strength, branch structures, and leaf forms. Flowers: perennials, the magical rebloom (when it happens), annuals, the colors shapes and textures, and of course my very favorite, the tulip.
Pink tulips in a glass vase were my first arrangements done weekly through a long winter. I was enchanted by the idea of bringing the garden indoors and the ability to change the look of a room instantly. The path led me to the Philadelphia Flower Show which gave me a chance to try lots of different designs and win (and lose, as in a sport) lots of prizes.
My inspiration led me to take classes here in Pennsylvania at Longwood Gardens, around the U.S., and each year a trip to Europe. The language of flowers needs no interpreter. Today I have the good fortune to teach floral design at Longwood Gardens, give lectures around the country, and still manage to sneak in a few flower jobs for weddings and parties.
It is so cold this morning with just a little snow, and I am remembering a cold January wedding filled with flowers.
The bride and her family are avid gardeners and also a very lively group so the focal flowers were POPPIES!!! Lots of dancing Italian poppies combined with ranunculus, tulips, roses and quince branches made the cold winter night come alive. Warm oranges, pinks, and yellows set off by candlelight glowed after being coddled and cosseted through the snow and ice.
I like to think of what flowers suit what people and ask my students, “If you could be a flower, what flower would you be?” What would you be?