Updated: Feb 18, 2020
Are you under the impression that floral arrangements are spat out of a machine? That florists click a button and they appear? I'm about to blow your mind with the answer...
No. They are not.
I know.. mind-blowing. Take a seat and let me explain.
Flowers bought from a retail florist and especially an events/wedding florist have had days and days of love and care and hard work put into them before they get to you.
Apart from the initial farm end of things (plant the seed, spend literal months and years growing, to then cutting, bunching and selling from setup at midnight at the crazy markets) let me fill you in from a florists point of view.
We start here -
3am: drive a 4hr round trip to the Sydney flower market. Run around trying to find the best, most beautiful blooms there are among 100's of other crazy flower lovers.
Once packed into the van (tiny car) and unpacked into the studio (messy house) it's time to process.
Unwrap the copious (and unnecessary) amounts of packaging - plastic and cardboard mostly. Rubber bands also!
Then - stripping the foliage beneath the water line on each stem, stripping thorns from every single rose, scolding some in boiling water and bashing the woody ends of others.
Give each stem a diagonal snip at the bottom to open the surface area and allow them to drink more water
Placing every stem & bunch into buckets of fresh water.
Placing buckets in a dark, cool spot to make sure they last. Or in the warm sunny space to coax them open.
This is a high-touch industry. All of this processing is done before we even start creating! Therefore this preparation is imperative to ensuring every flower looks beautiful for that exact moment/photo.
For a large Saturday wedding, most florists will head to market on the Wednesday. This means the flowers from market to aisle need to last well and be ready to look their absolute best at a very particular moment. This means changing the water, moving and babysitting the fleurs over the 3 or 4 days. As well as creating the masterpieces(!)
For a retail florist, they usually get a few market runs in throughout the week if they have a high turnover. However, all of this prep is still important! Although the flowers may be sold the day they get into the shop, they need to last a good couple of days/a week or more to ensure your customers are happy as Larry and keep coming back for more!
So, as you can see, flowers are in fact, NOT spat out of a machine.
They are loved and babysat and cared for for years until they get into your arms.
Next time you're confused why your florist can't get a particular thing to you in time, something seems 'too expensive' or you feel disappointed in something your florist has done, please take a step back, re-read this post and see that we honestly do the best we can with you in mind - always.