There’s nothing better than a fresh floral arrangement—they smell good, look good, make for great gifts and immediately brighten up any space. That’s where growing your own cut flower garden comes in handy. With a wide variety of heights and colors to pick from, your mix-and-match possibilities are nearly endless. So, follow along to establish a cut flower garden plan to get to creating your own arrangements in no time.
Picking Your Cut Flowers
To get the most out of your arrangements, it’s always a good idea to grow a wide variety of flowers. The best flowers for cutting are typically annuals, as they survive for only one season and allow for different species to be grown every year.
However, a nice mix of perennials and annuals looks great in your backyard. While some perennials take a bit more space to grow, they come back year-after-year—letting you enjoy the same flowers without the effort of having to replant them.
Zinnias and cosmos make for great starter flowers, as they grow quickly and bloom easily, while adding a nice frilly texture to your garden. Even better, these annuals come in a myriad of colors. Even though they take a bit more effort to care for, tulips make for a great counterpart in your garden. They also come in a variety of colors, and their bulb-shaped blooms pair perfectly with the frilly cosmos and zinnias. For some height, sunflowers are the perfect flower to round out any arrangement. Their vibrant yellows and subtle oranges go great with the pastel colors of the zinnias, cosmos and tulips.
Planting Your Cut Flower Garden
Picking out a space for your new garden bed is simple, all it takes is a plot of land (or a raised garden bed) in an area that gets a lot of sun. You even can plant the flowers to match any aesthetic look you want. A common cut flower garden layout practice is planting in order of height—many gardeners opt for planting their taller flowers (like sunflowers) towards the back of the bed. You might even want to consider incorporating a trellis if you plan on growing vining flowers, such as nasturtiums.
As always, refer to the seed packets to determine when to plant before last frost so your flowers are in full bloom when the time is right. Cut flower care is a breeze, too. All it takes is regular watering and appropriate fertilizing to help them thrive.
Making the Cut
Once your flowers are fully grown, it’s time to cut. Take a pair of pruning shears and pick out the flowers you want to throw into your arrangement. However, cutting garden flowers isn’t as simple as taking a pair of clippers and snipping away. You need to first pinpoint the main intersection of the flower—it’s where new buds grow on the stem and fork off into different directions. Once you have the intersection located, measure approximately one inch above and angle the shears to make a cut at a 45º angle. (The purpose of the angled cut is to increase the surface area at the bottom of the stem, helping the flowers drink more water when arranged in a vase.)
Now that you have the right angle, feel free to snip away. Once you’ve assembled a beautiful bouquet of flowers, you’re now able to transfer them to a vase of your choice. To get the most life out of your flowers, keep them in clean water, while keeping out any foliage and dead petals that happen to drop.
There you have it—your very own cut flower garden plan. Now get outside and get cutting. You’ll be crafting your own beautiful arrangements like a professional florist in no time!
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