Sending Flowers After the First Date

Alright guy, so you nailed the first date. Miniature golf went over surprisingly well, she loved the bottle of wine you bought, and somehow despite your shaky hands and grumbling stomach you locked down a good night kiss. Nice work. You deserve a high five. Now how do you go about asking her on a second date? Will a phone call do? How long do you have to wait? Want to send her flowers to let her know you had a great time? Good for you. But before you go and send her a dozen roses, think for a minute. Are you going to scare her off? Flowers are a definite way to get her attention after the first date, but don’t go overboard. Odds are if you feel like you’re trying too hard, you probably are. Here are three tips for how to send flowers after the first date.

Keep It Simple
You’ve only been on one date, so don’t go and spend your life savings on flowers. Find a simple and reasonably priced bouquet. Spending too much money can potentially make her feel that you’re too invested and scare her away. Remember that not everyone is comfortable having other people spend money on them. And while a dozen red roses seem like the classic bouquet to send, hold off, as many people associate these flowers with deep feelings of love and passion. Send something basic, vibrant and colorful that will grab her attention without making her feel smothered.  

Write a Nice Note
Attach a note to your flowers with a short, straightforward message. Keep it lighthearted. Let her know you had a good time the other night, but don’t start throwing out buzzwords like “soul mate” or “destiny.” The gesture of sending flowers already makes your intentions clear, so brevity is encouraged. Tell her you enjoyed the first date and want to see her again and leave it at that. 

Don’t Send Them to Her Work
Remember that one date is not that big of a commitment. Sure you want to see her again, but if you send flowers to her workplace all of her colleagues will likely ask her who sent them. This puts her in the uncomfortable position of having to field questions about you while she is in a professional setting. Save this move for when you’ve taken her on another  five or 10 dates. 

June Blooms: Picking the Best Flowers at a Farmers Market

June Blooms: Picking the Best Flowers at a Farmers Market

Summertime is upon us, and that means farmers markets. When you’re looking for quality produce and local meats, farmers markets are the go-to place to get the freshest food available in your community. Often overlooked, though, are the beautiful flowers that farmers and gardeners grow and sell at these lovely outdoor venues. There are two big advantages to purchasing flowers at your neighborhood farmers market. First off, flowers being sold by nearby vendors are likely native to the region. Secondly, farmers market flowers are always in season. June is a great time to purchase flowers both for gardening and displaying. The month not only welcomes in summer, but also is when many flowers are in bloom.

Looking for summer flowers?
Flowers at the Santa Monica Farmers Market
Photo credit: Santa Monica Farmers Market

Here are seven flowers to look for at the farmers market in June:

1. Calla LiliesThese bell-shaped flowers are remarkably hardy and elegant. Calla lilies have a distinct appearance, making them a great flower to use when decorating the table for a hearty summer feast.

2. Cornflowers: These plants are strong annuals named for their once prominent growth throughout corn fields. Now found rarely in the wild, their flowers bloom in a gorgeous azure to violet color (cornflower blue) that will brighten up any home garden or living room windowsill. 

3. Coxcombs: With a vase life of up to two weeks, the coxcomb is a great farmers market purchase that will stay fresh as a centerpiece on your kitchen table. 

4. IrisesNamed after the Greek goddess, these perennial flowers come in a lot of colors and are easy to garden. Irises bloom in early summer, making them a perfect buy near the end of June. 

5. PeoniesThough peonies technically bloom in spring, they flourish throughout the entire summer. Peonies are perennial plants with a long life span – they can live in gardens for as long as a century.

6. RosesThese romantic flowers are in bloom nearly year round. (Except for winter of course!) Roses come in various colors and require a lot of sun. If you plant them in a garden, remember not to trim them back during the summer, as the heat may be too much for them to take. If you want to get creative, you can use rose hips as an ingredient in homemade jam or tea.

7. Zinnias: Buy these flowers for a tremendous burst of color. Zinnias come in a wide spectrum of colors and bloom largely in the summertime. 

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5 of the Most Unusual Flowers on Planet Earth

5 of the Most Unusual Flowers on Planet Earth

Plant life is a continuous source of human intrigue. Though we often find solace in a beautiful garden stocked with hydrangeas and roses, enjoying the amalgamation of gorgeous blooming flowers and pleasant aromas, many plants are in fact peculiar, stinky and bizarre. Interestingly enough, while some of our favorite garden flowers thrive by providing colorful, showy blooms and scents insects and humans find appealing, other flowers rely on being malodorous and unattractive. Here are five remarkably unusual flowers:

1. The Corpse Lily: This flower gets its name from the foul aroma it emits, which many claim resembles the smell of a stinking corpse. The plant projects this odor to attract flies and beetles that carry pollen from one lily to another. Scientifically named Rafflesia arnoldii, this plant has the largest individual flower on Earth, with five gigantic red petals surrounding a large opening at the center. These flowers can be up to 3 feet in diameter. They are indigenous to rainforests and live exclusively on host vines. Sadly, due to deforestation, the Corpse Lily has become endangered.

Corpse Lily
stinking corpse lily (Rafflesia arnoldii)

2. Hydnora Africana: Remember that scene in Star Wars where Luke Skywalker and Han Solo almost get thrown into the mouth of that giant plant creature in the sand dunes? Well, Hydnora Africana kind of looks like a smaller version of that beast. This parasitic plant is native to the deserts of South Africa, and in a similar way to the corpse lily, uses an unpleasant, pungent smell to attract carrion beetles. The beetles can easily enter the mouth of the plant but struggle to find their way out. This insures beetles have enough time to pick up or deposit pollen.

Hydnora African
hydnora africana

3. The Black Bat Flower: This plant originates from Southeast Asia and has unique flowers that resemble bat wings. Violet to black whiskers protrude outward and can grow to around 28 inches in length. Finding and purchasing a black bat flower can be challenging, but they are sometimes sold around Halloween as a novelty gardening item. This flower grows well in shade, which adds to its bat-like reputation.

Black Bat Flower
black bat flower, tacca chantrieri

4. The Titan Arum: Amorphophallus titanum, also known as the titan arum, can grow over 8 feet tall and weigh over 100 pounds. Despite its enormous stature, it is technically composed of many smaller flowers, which is why the corpse flower wins the battle for world’s largest flower. People are known to wear protective nose masks when viewing this flower, as legend says the stench is powerful enough to make humans faint on the spot. This plant can take up to six years to reach full bloom.

Corpse Flower
Corpse Flower

5. Snake’s Head Fritillary: This wildflower has a beautiful bell-shaped bloom with petals that look like snakeskin. They are rarely found in their natural habitat and are protected in the wild. Despite being hard to find, these plants are a great addition to a home garden. Snake’s head bulbs bloom at the beginning of spring and serve as a dazzling harbinger for the coming months of summer.

Snake Head Frittallary
Snake Head Fritillary

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7 Fun Facts about the Venus’ Flytrap

Imagining a Venus’ flytrap might bring up exotic images of the Amazon jungle or a lush forest on a deserted island. But in reality, Venus’ flytraps only grow naturally in a minuscule geographical area of marshes in North and South Carolina. These alien-looking plants have some extremely peculiar qualities and have been a source of mystery and legend for centuries. Here are seven fun facts about Venus’ flytraps:  

1. Venus’ flytraps are endangered. People were so fascinated with the unusual plant that they took many of them away from their native soil, eventually pushing Venus’ flytraps near extinction.

2. There are over 500 kinds of carnivorous plants in the world. They are mainly a product of low-nutrient environments. Though they survive off of photosynthesis like other plants, they require additional nutrients to stay alive.

3. Venus’ flytraps can “spit out” objects. Okay, so they don’t actually propel the object from the trap. When one of the traps catches a living organism such as a bug, trigger hairs inside the trap are contacted as the prey tries to escape, telling the trap to close. If nonliving detritus such as dirt or a rock land in the trap, the trigger hairs aren’t stimulated. So when the Venus’ flytrap regains energy, it opens up and allows the object to fall out or blow away in the wind. 

4. When a Venus’ flytrap captures prey, it secretes digestive juices in a way similar to how a stomach functions. This allows the plant to breakdown its prey, although it cannot envelop the tough exoskeletons of insects. Instead, it reopens and allows the debris to fall away. 

5. The first part of the name originates from the pagan goddess of love, Venus, and is meant to symbolize the way the plant lures its prey. (If you research this designation further, be prepared to encounter some stories about vulgar-minded naturalists.)

6. Despite myths brought on by the popularity of “Little Shop of Horrors,” flytraps stick to eating insects and arachnids. Of course, it is easiest to spot flies buzzing around the air and landing on the traps, which contributes to the name. 

7. Some insects are too big for flytraps to consume. If a Venus’ flytrap captures prey that is too large, the particular trap often dies because mold and bacteria attack the dead insect. Venus’ flytraps can afford to lose one or two traps this way.   

A Flower Guide for Outdoor Summer Weddings

A Flower Guide for Outdoor Summer Weddings

Planning a summer wedding can be a lot of hard work. Friends and family are trying to plan their vacations, and the hot summer weather is unpredictable. You have a thousand minute details to plan and remember. Of course, one of these is the flower arrangements. Flowers are an essential aspect of any summer wedding, but selecting an array that work well for your big day can be tricky. Here are several tips for finding the perfect flowers for a summer wedding.

Choose Flowers That Last All Day

If the weather is too hot and your wedding takes place outdoors, some flowers won’t stand up to the extreme temperature and might not last throughout the day. Buying wedding flowers that are in season locally will help ensure that they are able to adapt to the normal weather fluctuations in the area. Working with florists that are near your wedding location will help prevent your flowers from spending too much time in transit. Sunflowers are remarkably resistant to heat and can generally handle tough weather conditions. The bright yellow color will complement the radiant, sunny days of summer.

Go for Bold

Bright and vibrant flowers will help give your wedding that extra pop. Flowers in bloom will provide the most color and variety. Formal, traditional ceremonies might require a different color palette than a casual ceremony, so consider flowers that are appropriate for the venue. Lilies, lilacs, sunflowers, roses and hydrangeas all have varieties that bloom in summer.

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Attention to Details

Though all of your flowers should go with the overall theme of your wedding, remember that flowers serving different functions can speak individually. What flowers are in your bouquet? Is the groom wearing a boutonniere? What flowers are going in the centerpieces? All of these flowers can adhere to the same motif while also being individually distinguished.

Be Mindful of Time

Your wedding is a tremendous moment in your life that you’ll want to enjoy. Summer days are long and the flowers will likely be out as you pose for wedding photos. The last thing you want to have to focus on all day are your bouquets, but remember, pictures are forever. You’ll want your flowers to look their best when snapping photographs. Keeping your flowers well watered and out of direct sunlight will help them stay fresh for the long haul.

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The Best Flowers for Little Girl’s Birthdays

The Best Flowers for Little Girl’s Birthdays

So it’s your daughter’s birthday. You and your spouse have already assembled the bicycle, built a tree fort, baked a cake or done everything else to make her big day as special as possible. But maybe the table looks a little bare, and the balloons you spent two hours blowing up are already deflating or have long since popped. Flowers are the perfect way to make to brighten up a birthday party and make it unforgettable.

Teleflora’s Bear Hug Bear with pink roses
Bear Hug Bear pink bouquet

Focus on the Vase

While an ornate, expensive vase might look best to you, remember that a slender basin might not be sturdy and could tip over easily at a party full of kids. Flowers can come in a variety of fun options that are perfect birthday present for your little girl and don’t pose a potential mess. Give your daughter something that she can keepsake gift that she can hold on to long after her birthday is over. A fun pot or vase can be reused to hold flowers for years to come.

Teleflora’s Be Happy Mug with yellow roses
Bear Hug Bear pink bouquet

Choose Vibrant Colors

Remember, this is a day of celebration! Festive flowers will show how excited you are for your her birthday. Look for bright arrangements that will stand out and catch her attention.

Teleflora’s Rainbow Present bouquet
Rainbow Present colorful bouquet

Pay Attention to Theme

If you’re having a themed birthday party, purchase flowers that match the motif. If all the streamers and balloons are pink, getting pink flowers might look more natural with the overall decor than if you were to buy blue ones. If you wrapped your gifts with yellow wrapping paper, yellow flowers such as daisies might pair well.

Your Special Day bouquet shaped like a cake
Your Special Day bouquet - flowers in shape of birthday cake

At the end of the day though, it’s the thought that counts. Flowers are that extra step that will show your little girl how much you care and make her birthday memorable.

AUTHOR:
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