Hydrangea and Peony 101

During the summer, it would seem that hydrangeas and peonies would be the perfect flowers for your wedding. However, these two beautiful blooms are much more sensitive to the hotter months than they appear. To help you better understand why it would be best to substitute them for a sturdier blossom when the temperatures climb, here are a few fast facts about both hydrangeas and peonies.

Hydrangea

While hydrangeas are available all throughout the summer and fall, once they are cut they become slightly more temperamental than their rooted counterparts. Especially with lighter-colored hydrangeas, it is important to keep them out of the sun as much as possible as they can wilt or brown easily in direct sunlight. The best way to keep your hydrangeas fresh and bright is to make sure they have a fresh cut stem every day and to keep them in a cool, shaded place. If you’re really worried about your hydrangeas not surviving until your wedding day you can add a tiny bit of Alum to the water, which will cause them to last longer. (A little less than a teaspoon should suffice.) In the instance that the hydrangeas are wilting very quickly, dunk them flower-first into a bucket (or bowl) of water and leave them in for 15 minutes. Hydrangeas are unique in that they “drink” from their petals, so you could also mist them with a spray bottle full of water if you see them starting to droop. Another effective technique you could use if you don’t want to wait 15 minutes is to cut the bottom of the hydrangea again in as sharp of an angle as you possible can and put them in hot water. The hot water travels more quickly to the flowers and the sharp cut will allow more surface area for water to be sucked up in to the stem. Finally, if you feel that you absolutely must have hydrangeas in your outdoor summer wedding, store them in a cold place and bring them outside at the last possible minute.

 

Peonies

Without a doubt peonies are the type of flower you’ll want to purchase a day or two (max) before your wedding. When peonies are first purchased, you’ll notice that most of them will be closed in a tight, round ball. This is normal, but the key to making peonies last is to keep them from “popping” until the day of your wedding.  Once peonies “pop”, the petals will continue to open until eventually they start falling off. This is a fairly quick process, so you’ll want to take extra care if you want the right look. Causing and/or preventing the peonies from popping is all about timing; if the peonies are purchased several days before your wedding and you’re afraid of them popping too early, you’ll want to bundle them up together fairly tightly and store them somewhere cold. However, if you find that the day of your wedding the peonies still haven’t popped, give them a fresh cut and put them in direct sunlight until you’re ready to use them; be sure to keep an eye on them though because you don’t want them to pop and fall apart before your wedding starts!

No doubt, all flowers can be temperamental when they’re out of season, but in my experience hydrangea and peonies seem to be the most popular (and most beautiful, amiright?!) Are there any other flowers you’d like to know more about? Let us know in the comments!

Cheers, y’all!

Sammi