Monthly Archives: February 2018

  • How Casket Flowers Can Honor a Loved One

    coffin-flower-arrangement-morgue

    A funeral is a very difficult time for everyone involved. Family, friends, and loved ones gather to commemorate the deceased, and flowers are often brought or sent to mark the occasion. This requires a certain amount of sensitivity, especially if the deceased is young or a child.

    Flowers have been used for spiritual purposes for much of human existence. They are used in almost every facet of life to celebrate births, rites of passage, courtships, and weddings, and often, spirituality is a method of coping with death, so it is only natural to use flowers as part of the practices to mark it. Here’s how casket flowers can help honor your loved one:

    Know the Language of Flowers

    Since funerals are such a sensitive time, you want to send the right message with the flower arrangement. While floriography, or the meanings assigned to flowers to send covert messages in courtship, was a Victorian idea to facilitate romance, all flowers have had meanings ascribed to them by folklore, mythology, and tradition. It is a good idea to know what each flower symbolizes, especially funeral flowers, so that you are giving the ones that have the most relevance between you and the deceased. You certainly want to honor the deceased one last time, and knowing the right flowers can prevent a lot of unnecessary stress and hurt feelings.

    Use Tradition as a Guide

    Different cultures also have different meanings for flowers. For example, chrysanthemums are used by Western cultures to honor deceased loved ones, but if the funeral is Asian in culture, tradition, or theme, this could be a huge gaffe. Color might also have different meanings across cultures, and even the arrangement of the flowers could have symbolic or spiritual meaning to the family. Always use the traditions of the deceased to help select the right flowers, and always respect the wishes of the family with regards to flowers.

    woman-mourns-her-hand-on-headston

    Consider Your Relationship

    Different arrangements of flowers are more appropriate for different mourners, so it is important to consider your relationship with the deceased. Was this a parent or grandparent? Was it a romantic partner or spouse? Was it a child? Was it an intimate friend or an acquaintance you didn’t know well? How you knew and interacted with the deceased is very important in determining what sort of flowers to give. If the deceased was, for example, a close friend who was married, you don’t want to give flowers that are normally the purview of a romantic partner. This is especially important since it is not good etiquette to send certain types of arrangements, as they are reserved only for immediate family.

    Live Plants

    Another great way to honor the deceased is with a live plant given to surviving family members. Grieving is not just about mourning a loved one’s loss. It is also about celebrating his or her life, especially if the deceased was very old or sick for a long time before passing on. Flowers are there to provide comfort to the living, and a live plant offers a way for this comfort to remain long after the funeral is over. This is also a very nice way to keep the memory of the deceased alive, especially if the plant was a favorite in life.

    A Final Message

    Any flowers being sent directly to the funeral should have a card with them, and a card should always be handwritten if you can arrange it (this can be done for you if you are ordering from afar). Conventions for how they are addressed are important, because this is the last chance you will have to say goodbye to the deceased. The funeral is the last time anyone will address the deceased, so any cards or flowers going directly to the funeral should follow this rule, while flowers being sent directly to the family should be addressed to whom they are being sent.

    mourner-placing-flower-on-casket-arlington

    Funerals are somber affairs with a lot of bereavement and sorrow, especially as one’s relationship is closer to the deceased. This is the final time everyone will have with the deceased in the material world, and flowers are often the final message we send loved ones when they die. Make your floral message count by following the above tips, and bring comfort to the grieving in this trying time.

  • Online Flowers Delivery Etiquette FAQ: Tipping, Rush Orders, and More

    online flowers delivery

    With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, many people are preparing to send flowers to their special someone. Nowadays, it’s just as common to place an online delivery order as it is to visit a florist -- but like so many things online that opens up a whole series of new questions about appropriate etiquette. How much should you tip the flower delivery person? (Especially if it’s a gift?) What are the ins and outs of rush ordering? What should you expect and what merits a customer service complaint?

    To make online flower delivery a bit less stressful, here are some helpful etiquette tips.

    Tipping

    online flowers delivery

    More than anything else, tipping seems to cause duress when it comes to ordering online flowers. One thing that makes this especially tricky is that typically flowers are sent and delivered as a gift—therefore, if you’re supposed to tip are you sending a gift that ends up costing the recipient money?

    While it’s not necessary to tip a flower delivery person, the opinions on the subject vary widely. The Emily Post Institute, the arbiters of proper etiquette, don’t even list flower delivery people on their comprehensive list of tipping guidelines. So, as a base line, no it’s not rude to not tip the person delivering your flowers.

    However, typically, many people to choose to do so and generally aim for somewhere in the $2-$5 range. If you are tipping and the bouquet/plant is very large or looks heavy to carry, consider exceeding $5. There are certain circumstances where tipping is the polite thing to do. If the flower delivery person has to make a special effort for you, show them your appreciation with a little extra cash. So, for instance, if its wintry weather and they have to navigate any icy driveway or they have to go through several layers of security at your office building or even just climb several flights of stairs to reach you, tip them to show you appreciate the extra work involved. It is also polite to tip during particularly busy seasons, such as Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day.

    Lastly, if you’re the one sending the flowers, consider adding a tip to your order so as to avoid making the person receiving the gift from feeling obligated to pay. When you place the order, make a note and add extra to the payment to express your gratitude. Be sure to also let the recipient know you’ve done this so they don’t tip a second time (unless they want to).

    The only instance where you should absolutely tip for flower deliveries is if wedding bouquets are being dropped off. In that case, it’s a bigger job and something in the $5-10 range is customary.

    Shipping and Rush Orders

    online flowers delivery

    Sometimes sending flowers at the last minute, especially if you want to send something in response in celebration or remorse, is unavoidable. There are plenty of florists that offer rush orders and same day delivery. So, if you’ve waited until the last minute, there is likely an option for you. However, be aware it will cost you -- often, same day delivery or rush orders are significantly more expensive because of the extra labor it requires to assemble a bouquet and deliver it in a timely manner on such short notice.

    Be considerate of busy seasons as well. If you’ve waited until the afternoon on Valentine’s Day to remember to order flowers, you may just be out of luck. If someone is willing to help you send a bouquet, be kind and considerate with their time. In these instances, it is best to tip generously.

    When shipping online flowers, read the fine print closely about how your flowers are delivered. Some websites offer places to request special handling/instructions, so look around until you find the service that handles shipping the way you prefer.

    When to call customer service

    online flowers delivery

    Many customer service questions can be answered without calling or emailing for help. Most websites, especially for larger scale sellers, have a FAQ section, so be sure to check there before dialing in with your question. Additionally, most online flower delivery orders come with a tracking number for your packages.

    That being said—every online flower delivery service should have a customer service hotline to call or email. If you need to make a last minute change to an order, call as soon as possible to see if it’s possible. If you don’t have adequate information via a tracking number, you should absolutely follow up to verify that your order has been shipped, delivered, etc.

    The number one reason you should contact customer service is if your order is wrong or delayed/never arrives. You need to report the error and find out if the service offers any kind of restitution for the mistake. In this case, as with all the etiquette here, be sure to be mindful and polite when dealing with customer service representatives. They are no more to blame for the error than you are.

    With these helpful tips and tricks, online flower delivery should be a breeze. When choosing an online florist, keep these ideas in mind and always follow up on their policies to be sure you know what they expect as far as tips, shipping, and more.

  • 7 Floral Arrangements Perfect For Rush Valentine's Day Flower Delivery

    EDIT_7 Floral Arrangements-01

    Valentine’s Day, the day of love and romance, is coming soon, and with it come chocolates, romantic dinners, and lots of flowers! Every year, numerous people order flowers for their Valentine ahead of time, sending beautiful bouquets, vases, and arrangements. Varieties of flowers can be found delivered to offices and homes all over the country. Still more flowers are ordered to be brought in person on Valentine’s dates, parties, and other holiday happenings. It is a busy day for flowers!

    Flowers are never too busy for love, though. Maybe you weren’t sure flowers were the right gift. Maybe it’s a new romance, and you didn’t know which flowers were your Valentine’s favorite. Maybe you just met your Valentine on Valentine’s Day, and want to show them they’ve caught your heart. Or maybe the day just crept up on you, and you find yourself scrambling at the last minute (hey, it happens!). Ordering flowers for Valentine’s Day at the last minute is almost as much of a tradition as the holiday itself, and we’ve got you covered!

    Here are some of the best Valentine’s Day flowers to make sure your Valentine is recognized, even if you can’t place your order until the last minute:

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Pink Elegance Bouquet

    Roses (Of Course!)

    Roses are so common on Valentine’s Day that they are almost the official rose of love. Red roses are most common, but white, yellow or pink roses can also make for an alluring arrangement. Roses are the most popular because they’ve long been associated with love and passion, a reputation that transferred to the modern age through Victorian era floriography. Also called the “language of flowers,” it is a system of love messages using flowers in bouquets as symbols of love, courtship, and romance. The rose will always be the queen of love, whether the bouquet is for a lover or a loved one. A box of long-stemmed roses can easily be ordered and delivered to your Valentine, even if you need it in a hurry.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Stargazer Lilies

    Stargazer Lilies in a Vase

    These beautiful, fragrant flowers are a relatively recent addition to the lily family, being a hybrid of Asiatic lilies and Oriental ones. However, lilies have as long a history as roses, representing motherhood, purity, and innocence. Pink lilies add a dash of romance, and stargazers themselves also have a beautiful scent that inspires feelings of love. Lilies in general could be a great choice, but stargazer lilies could be perfect for that budding new romance that you hope blossoms into something more. They can be matched with like-colored garnish flowers in a decorated vase for a pretty pink statement of affection.

    A Bouquet of Carnations

    The official flower of January finds itself all over romance, from wedding ceremonies in China to prom corsages all over the United States. They were worn as garlands in ancient Rome, and were used in Victorian floriography. A corsage or lapel pin could be a perfect flower gift for younger Valentines, while a gift of carnations to loved ones such as moms or grandmothers can say “I love you” very thoughtfully. Lovers need not dismiss carnations either - pink, white, and red carnations are symbols of courtship and affection that can be given in a bouquet by themselves or arranged with another flower, such as roses. They are the center of many bouquets, especially in varying colors.

    A Basket of Daisies

    Although these flowers are most famous for “they love me/they love me not,” they are actually symbols of childhood, innocence, and purity, being associated in part with the Virgin Mary. However, their older symbolism is with goddesses of love and fertility such as Freya of the Norse pantheon. This makes daisies a great flower for a child to give a Valentine’s crush, and lovers can use them alone or with another flower to symbolize the purity of the romance. An adorable decorative basket can be a great flower gift, and amplifies the contribution daisies make to the language of flowers.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Happy Hearts Bouquet

    Baby’s Breath for Everything

    In a vase, bouquet, or arrangement, baby’s breath often garnishes the flowers that are the star of the show, be they roses, lilies, or any other colored flower. They represent everlasting love, fidelity, and loyalty, so it makes sense to find them accompanying so many types of flower arrangements. For Valentine’s Day, you can find them in white garnishing a rose bouquet, but baby’s breath also comes in pink, which means they can add that lacy touch to any bouquet. They do better pre-arranged, so you will often find them in vases, but since they are such a standard for Valentine’s Day, they will be ready and waiting for your rush delivery.

    Iris in Silk

    Sometimes people are allergic to flowers, but love them anyway. Others might fear for harm to pets and children from eating the flowers or leaves, and even where there may not be harm by ingestion, no one wants to see the arrangement wrecked. Fresh cut flowers might also wilt if sent from long distances. Artificial flowers can be a wonderful and long-lasting way to tell your Valentine you love them without any of these concerns preventing you. Irises are beautiful purple flowers that were used in Victorian floriology to represent admiration of wisdom and intelligence, and their purple hue provides a splash of color that is popular in Valentine’s Day arrangements. Silk provides that flower-petal feel, making it a great material for artificial irises for your last-minute Valentine’s Day needs.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Hugs and Kisses Orchids

    Display of Orchids

    Exotic and beautiful, orchids add a tropical flair to any bouquet. Partly associated with luxury and opulence, orchids were given to someone the giver was truly, deeply in love with. Today, tropical flowers are a little easier to get than they were a century or two ago, but their symbolism and exotic stature make them a great Valentine’s Day flower. They can be matched with any flower, but really look beautiful when matched with their tropical neighbors, such as birds of paradise.

    With so many flowers to choose from and so many ways to give them, finding the right flowers for all of your Valentines is simple, even at the last minute. You love your Valentines and want to make sure they know it. Whether they are for a romance, family member, or just someone who needs to know they are loved, your Valentine’s Day needs are covered!

    Valentine’s Day, the day of love and romance, is coming soon, and with it come chocolates, romantic dinners, and lots of flowers! Every year, numerous people order flowers for their Valentine ahead of time, sending beautiful bouquets, vases, and arrangements. Varieties of flowers can be found delivered to offices and homes all over the country. Still more flowers are ordered to be brought in person on Valentine’s dates, parties, and other holiday happenings. It is a busy day for flowers!

    Flowers are never too busy for love, though. Maybe you weren’t sure flowers were the right gift. Maybe it’s a new romance, and you didn’t know which flowers were your Valentine’s favorite. Maybe you just met your Valentine on Valentine’s Day, and want to show them they’ve caught your heart. Or maybe the day just crept up on you, and you find yourself scrambling at the last minute (hey, it happens!). Ordering flowers for Valentine’s Day at the last minute is almost as much of a tradition as the holiday itself, and we’ve got you covered!

    Here are some of the best Valentine’s Day flowers to make sure your Valentine is recognized, even if you can’t place your order until the last minute:

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Pink Elegance Bouquet

    Roses (Of Course!)

    Roses are so common on Valentine’s Day that they are almost the official rose of love. Red roses are most common, but white, yellow or pink roses can also make for an alluring arrangement. Roses are the most popular because they’ve long been associated with love and passion, a reputation that transferred to the modern age through Victorian era floriography. Also called the “language of flowers,” it is a system of love messages using flowers in bouquets as symbols of love, courtship, and romance. The rose will always be the queen of love, whether the bouquet is for a lover or a loved one. A box of long-stemmed roses can easily be ordered and delivered to your Valentine, even if you need it in a hurry.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Stargazer Lilies

    Stargazer Lilies in a Vase

    These beautiful, fragrant flowers are a relatively recent addition to the lily family, being a hybrid of Asiatic lilies and Oriental ones. However, lilies have as long a history as roses, representing motherhood, purity, and innocence. Pink lilies add a dash of romance, and stargazers themselves also have a beautiful scent that inspires feelings of love. Lilies in general could be a great choice, but stargazer lilies could be perfect for that budding new romance that you hope blossoms into something more. They can be matched with like-colored garnish flowers in a decorated vase for a pretty pink statement of affection.

    A Bouquet of Carnations

    The official flower of January finds itself all over romance, from wedding ceremonies in China to prom corsages all over the United States. They were worn as garlands in ancient Rome, and were used in Victorian floriography. A corsage or lapel pin could be a perfect flower gift for younger Valentines, while a gift of carnations to loved ones such as moms or grandmothers can say “I love you” very thoughtfully. Lovers need not dismiss carnations either - pink, white, and red carnations are symbols of courtship and affection that can be given in a bouquet by themselves or arranged with another flower, such as roses. They are the center of many bouquets, especially in varying colors.

    A Basket of Daisies

    Although these flowers are most famous for “they love me/they love me not,” they are actually symbols of childhood, innocence, and purity, being associated in part with the Virgin Mary. However, their older symbolism is with goddesses of love and fertility such as Freya of the Norse pantheon. This makes daisies a great flower for a child to give a Valentine’s crush, and lovers can use them alone or with another flower to symbolize the purity of the romance. An adorable decorative basket can be a great flower gift, and amplifies the contribution daisies make to the language of flowers.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Happy Hearts Bouquet

    Baby’s Breath for Everything

    In a vase, bouquet, or arrangement, baby’s breath often garnishes the flowers that are the star of the show, be they roses, lilies, or any other colored flower. They represent everlasting love, fidelity, and loyalty, so it makes sense to find them accompanying so many types of flower arrangements. For Valentine’s Day, you can find them in white garnishing a rose bouquet, but baby’s breath also comes in pink, which means they can add that lacy touch to any bouquet. They do better pre-arranged, so you will often find them in vases, but since they are such a standard for Valentine’s Day, they will be ready and waiting for your rush delivery.

    Iris in Silk

    Sometimes people are allergic to flowers, but love them anyway. Others might fear for harm to pets and children from eating the flowers or leaves, and even where there may not be harm by ingestion, no one wants to see the arrangement wrecked. Fresh cut flowers might also wilt if sent from long distances. Artificial flowers can be a wonderful and long-lasting way to tell your Valentine you love them without any of these concerns preventing you. Irises are beautiful purple flowers that were used in Victorian floriology to represent admiration of wisdom and intelligence, and their purple hue provides a splash of color that is popular in Valentine’s Day arrangements. Silk provides that flower-petal feel, making it a great material for artificial irises for your last-minute Valentine’s Day needs.

    Valentines Day flower delivery

    Hugs and Kisses Orchids

    Display of Orchids

    Exotic and beautiful, orchids add a tropical flair to any bouquet. Partly associated with luxury and opulence, orchids were given to someone the giver was truly, deeply in love with. Today, tropical flowers are a little easier to get than they were a century or two ago, but their symbolism and exotic stature make them a great Valentine’s Day flower. They can be matched with any flower, but really look beautiful when matched with their tropical neighbors, such as birds of paradise.

    With so many flowers to choose from and so many ways to give them, finding the right flowers for all of your Valentines is simple, even at the last minute. You love your Valentines and want to make sure they know it. Whether they are for a romance, family member, or just someone who needs to know they are loved, your Valentine’s Day needs are covered!

  • All About Violets: February's Birth Flower

    violets-flowers

    Violets are beautiful and versatile flowers that grow well in the wild. They have been associated with many different admirable qualities such as love, faith, and chastity, and they are also the flower of the month of February. There are a lot of things about violets that most people would be surprised to learn. This little flower hides many wonders beneath the heart-shaped petals!

    February, in addition to being the month of violets, is also the month of love and creativity. So let’s delve into the world of this herbaceous little flower and see what secrets violets have to tell us!

    Violets Are Not Always Violet

    Despite the name, violets actually come in many different colors. While the purple and blue ones tend to steal the spotlight, they also come in yellow, white, and orange, and many of them have a second color in the middle. What unites all of these flowers is family: all violet species are from the family Violaceae.

    African Violets Are Not Violets

    Saintpaulia, the plant commonly known as African violet, is from the family Gesneriaceae. This means it is not actually a violet, but it looks very similar. Since violets do not grow very well indoors, saintpaulia is often used instead. Pansies, however, are a type of violet, as are between 525 and 600 other species.

    Violets Have Been Around a While

    Since they grow prolifically in temperate zones, violets have been collected for various uses since the ancient Greeks. Since they are edible, they were eaten, fermented, and used in medicine, in addition to worn or used to decorate. Since they are rich in vitamins and have soothing anti-inflammatory properties when applied to the skin, herbalists throughout history used them to nourish and heal.

    bunch-blue-violets

    Where to Find Violets

    Violets can be grown in any temperate zone, but this huge family has a wide array of personalities. Some violets grow well in cool climates, while others need a little warmth to thrive. Some species violets thrive in damp, while others crave loose soil, and still others hide underground. They all seem to prefer shade and moderate temperatures, but each species has different needs.

    The Wild Violet

    Violets can be found all over the United States, and a few species can be found in Europe. They bloom from spring to early summer in well-saturated or freely draining soil, but in the right conditions can last as long as early fall. Since they spread almost invasively, they can be found in the same areas and may even spread, but as a perennial, they only last for the season of their blooming.

    Gardening With Violets

    Although violets are wildflowers, they can still be cultivated and tamed for your garden. This is a relatively simple matter of keeping them from spreading and watching out for natural predators that consume parts of the plant. Most violets want to be in the moist, shady part of your garden, but they can also be nurtured in containers. They are not happy indoors, but can adorn your spring garden like gems.

    viola-genus-flowering-plants-violet-family

    Four US states - Wisconsin, Rhode Island, Illinois, and New Jersey - claim violets as their state flower, and with so many ways violets can enhance one’s life, it is no wonder. Whether thrown in a salad, mixed into a soothing balm, or simply grown to enjoy their beauty, violets add much to our lives, whether we realize it or not. With so many species of violets to choose from, you are sure to find some that will bring their essence into your garden!

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