A couple of months ago Pat Sholund of the always fascinating and stunning botanical garden, Aldridge Gardens, called and asked me to help her with an article on the use of native and local flora in wedding bouquets. Well, of course, nothing could please me more than to brag about native Alabama plants!
Serendipity! It just so happened we were pulling together a few bouquets for an event at Engaged Wedding Library and were able to share these images as examples. This bouquet we named "Clementine" contains both native and locally grown ingredients such as hellebores, yarrow foliage and wild blackberries.
Bouquet "Charlotte" contains locally grown blueberries, baptisia, hydrangea and lamb's ear.
"Evangeline" bouquet features local Solomon's seal, hosta, waxleaf ligustrum buds, viburnum, the fernlike foliage of yarrow. Though these spring tuberose were brought in, this hot August we will have the most heavenly tuberose in bloom, grown locally in Sand Mountain, Alabama.
Below, a bouquet we call "Elizabeth" is composed of pale garden roses accompanied by silvery artemisia and lamb's ear.
I admit it...I'm partial to local green. Wherever local is.
There is a wonderfully authentic quality to design where the local landscape is considered. It is as true in architecture as in flower design. One of my favorite designers, Francoise Weeks has made her signature weaving the plant life of her Northwest woodlands into every exquisite design.
You see, where many floral designers came in through the front door, I truly came in through the back - the garden gate you might say.
I was born into a family of prolific gardeners. My Daddy teaches our county Master Gardeners how to grow the perfect tomatoes and my Mama keeps the most exquisite perennial and native wildflower garden. Early on, I logged hours hauling, potting, and creating container gardens at a local nursery, all the while, learning about essentials like hardiness and bloom time from the "ground up." Friends often ask why Lillie's bouquets have a natural look about them. I really believe it is because we include Alabama green in most of our bouquets. I guess my love affair with Southern plants was destiny.