From Erin Benzakein, a leader in the farm-to-centerpiece movement and owner of Floret Flower Farms, comes Cut Flower Garden - a striking guide to growing, harvesting and arranging gorgeous blooms year-round. (Full Disclosure - I took photos of Michele M. Waite's breathtaking photography from the book)
When Julie Chai, friend and co-writer of the Cut Flower Garden book asked if she could send me a copy to review I thought, "Flowers? What do I know about flowers?" At Potted we specialize in drought-tolerant and interior container plants. Easy care. Low water. No flowers. But before the book arrived I started thinking, "I actually like flowers. They're pretty. They make me happy. Wouldn't it be great if I could walk out into my garden and cut a bouquet for the dinner table?"
I remember a woman who lived down the street from the store for years and every spring I envied her sweet peas climbing up the front fence. They seemed to bloom forever and I was absolutely in love with them but for some reason I kept telling myself they were too difficult for me to try. Never mind the woman had one arm and seemed to be doing just fine.
Floret Flower Farms, Erin's family-run business in Mt. Vernon, Washington, is a testement to the fact that one woman can grow a lot of flowers. Known for her lush, vibrant, romantic floral designs, Erin won the Martha Stewart American Made award for Floral and Event Design as well as the Better Home and Gardens blogger award among many others. Her floral design skills are pretty amazing and in this book she not only shares these skills, she also gives you all the tools and tips to grow the flowers.
She starts you off with the basics - planning your site, how to start seedlings, tools you'll need.
Then she goes into amazing detail of all the varities of flowers you can grow by season - how to grow them, her favorite varities, tricks for keeping them longer in vases.
She even includes projects to try like this Spring Flower Crown. And there are endless mind numbingly gorgeous photos of her floral bouquets which will inspire you to no end (you'll just have to get the book to see those for yourself).
I think of all flowers, Dahlias are my favorite. It may be time to start my first cut-flower bed.
Cut Flower Garden from Chronicle Books available March 7, 2017 or for pre-order now on Amazon.