Wedding Flowers for Every Season
Flowers Make Weddings Beautiful
The flowers are one of the most beautiful parts of any wedding (after the bride, of course). Between bouquets, centerpieces, and other floral displays, there will also be a large number of flowers at the average wedding. The wedding flowers help to set the tone, add color, and make the ceremony and reception spaces feel more festive. One of the best ways to ensure that the flowers will be as fresh and affordable as possible is to select varieties which will be in season at the time of the wedding. This is a guide to wedding flowers for every season.
Pastel Flowers Are Especially Popular For Spring Weddings
Spring has many wonderful flowers to offer a bride. In general, spring blossoms are fresh and cheerful. Pastel colors are traditional, though there are also some more vibrant and deep options available within the seasonal spring flower world. Spring is the prime time for flowering bulbs. Not only are varieties such as tulips and hyacinth most widely available in the early months of the year, they also just say “spring”, which is a wonderful reason to include them in the wedding centerpieces and bouquets. These are some of the top choices for seasonal blossoms for a spring wedding.
Anemone: Available for most of the year, other than the summer months, this flower has seen its popularity increase in recent years, as part of the black and white wedding trend. The white anemone with a black center is one of the few flowers which features true black color. They are also available in pink, red, and a breathtaking blue.
Bells of Ireland: Widely available from January – October, this green plant is a nice addition to a colorful bouquet or centerpiece.
Casablanca or Stargazer Lily: These dramatic lilies with the large showy blossoms are available for most of the year, except in the autumn. The Casablanca lily is white and the Stargazer is pink. Either is excellent for weddings with a tropical flavor, and they are also very elegant. Be cautious about using these highly scented flowers near food at the reception or in small spaces, as some find their fragrance to be overpowering.
Cherry Blossoms: The pink flowering branches of the cherry blossom make a gorgeous accent for tall spring wedding table arrangements. They also have strong associations with Asia, especially Japan, China, and Korea, which make the heavenly blossoms a favorite motif for East-meets-West theme weddings. In Asian cultures, the cherry blossom is considered to be an omen of good fortune, which is an auspicious meaning for a wedding flower.
Daffodil: Few flowers are more emblematic of spring than the cheerful daffodil. They are primarily yellow, but variations exist with combinations of white and yellow, white and orange, or yellow and orange. Mini-daffodils make a marvelous addition to any yellow spring wedding bouquet.
Delphinium: This blueish-purple flower is known for both its exquisite color and its height. Each stem of delphinium features multiple blossoms along its length. The vertical nature of delphinium makes it particularly useful for creating tall centerpieces.
Hyacinth: One of the traditional spring bulbs, hyacinth is a fairly compact plant which lends itself to bouquets or low floral arrangements. It would be an excellent choice for potted centerpieces. They are available in a wide range of colors, such as blue, white, pink, yellow, and violet. A related variety is the grape hyacinth, also called muscari, which resembles a tiny bunch of blue grapes. Muscari is popular in wedding bouquets because it is one of the most intensely blue flowers available.
Lilac: The heady fragrance of lilacs is unmistakable as it perfumes the May air. The large lilac or white colored many-petaled blossoms are as beautiful as their distinctive scent; however they also wilt very quickly, which makes lilacs a poor choice for bridal bouquets. They are best used as additions to centerpieces, so that they can be kept in water continuously. Lilacs would be lovely for a garden wedding.
Lily-of-the-Valley: The birth flower for the month of May, this is one of the most traditional flowers for bridal bouquets. The dainty pink or white flowers are ideal for diminutive posies. Their petite size and high price tag makes the lily-of-the-valley less commonly used for reception centerpieces, which tend to be larger in scale than the bride's bouquet.
Peony: One of the favorite flowers of spring brides, the lush round blossoms of the peony are ideal for wedding bouquets and centerpieces. They grow in white, pale pink, and a deep reddish-pink, and combine brilliantly with other bridal favorites such as roses. Peonies are one of the pricier spring wedding flowers, but this does nothing to dampen their constant appeal.
Ranunculus: Cherished for their unique papery appearance, the perfectly round ranunculus blossoms are available from February through May. They are a mid-sized flower, and work well in mixed bouquets or table arrangements. Ranunculus blooms are primarily seen in white, pink, red, orange, and yellow.
Sweet pea: This ruffly old-fashioned flower has an immense vintage charm. Romantic and frilly, the sweet pea has a fragrance to live up to its name, and comes in popular wedding colors like white, pink, and purple. It is often used in combination with other classic wedding flowers like roses to create charming bouquets.
Tulip: If there is one flower which is the most recognized symbol of spring, it would have to be the tulip. The peak season for tulips is December through April. This popular spring blossom comes in a very wide variety of colors, from the purest white to a purple so deep it is nearly black. Brides also enjoy tulips in every shade of pink, plum, yellow, orange, and red. In addition to the classic Dutch tulip, the more exotic parrot tulips with their ruffled edges are a wedding favorite.
Summer Offers An Abundance Of Wedding Flowers
In summer, the flowers tend to be more vibrant, and there are plenty of wonderful choices for wedding flowers. Many of the spring flowers are still available in the early part of the summer, and numerous other varieties will be in season. In addition to blossoms which are appropriate for more formal affairs, there are many lovely choices for casual weddings; chief among the less formal wedding flowers is the ever-popular gerbera daisy. This is an overview of some of the fabulous flowers available in the hot months of summer.
Alstromeria: These pretty multi-tonal blossoms come in a wide array of colors, such as white and pink, apricot, and golden yellow. More sturdy than they appear, one of the most interesting things about alstromerias is their spotted and striped patterns and mixture of colors within one flower. Many of the summer blooming alstromeria originate in Brazil.
Asters: Typically thought of as an autumn flower, asters actually become available in the late summer. Usually seen in white, pink, and purple, this hardy blossom is perfect for informal wedding arrangements with a wildflower look.
Chrysanthemum: A reasonably priced hardy bloom, mums are available in the summer and fall. They come in traditional wedding colors like white, yellow, and pink, but also in trendy tones like lime green. The smallish Kermit pom pom mum is especially popular as a bright green accent for wedding bouquets and centerpieces.
English lavender: With a relaxing scent perfect for soothing the nerves of an anxious bride, lavender makes an excellent addition to a bridal bouquet. Its signature color blends well with other shades of purple as well as pink. Including herbs in the bride's bouquet is an old Scandinavian wedding custom.
Forget-me-not: These little blue flowers symbolize true love, which makes them a natural addition to a mixed wedding bouquet.
Freesia: Available in white, yellow, pink, purple, and blue, the funnel shaped freesia blossoms are best known for their pretty fragrance. They are typically included in mixed flower arrangements, rather than single blossom bouquets and table displays.
Gerbera daisy: Inexpensive, widely available, and brightly colored, gerbera daisies are a wildly popular choice for informal weddings. They come in pink, hot pink, fuchsia, orange, yellow, red, and white, just to name a few colors. Often used in whimsical displays, gerbera daisies are one of the favorite flowers of summer brides.
Hydrangea: Beloved for their full blooms, hydrangeas are very popular during their limited summertime run. The flowers come in white, pink, purple, green, and blue. The blue hydrangeas are an especially sought after shade, as they are one of the few true blue flowers. Interestingly enough, it is the acidity of the soil which dictates in which color a hydrangea plant will bloom. Though not an inexpensive flower, the very large size of each hydrangea flower means that a few stems can be used to create very full bouquets and centerpieces. They work very well alone or in combination with other wedding classics like roses and peonies.
Iris: The deep purple hue of the iris makes an interesting addition to a summer bouquet or centerpiece. Particularly popular are mini-irises, which combine very nicely with other flowers.
Lilies, Asiatic and Oriental: When brides want to impress, these dramatic lilies cannot be beat. Asiatic lilies feature medium sized blooms which are typically unscented, while Oriental lilies boast very large blossoms and usually an equally grand fragrance. Lilies are most commonly used in white, pink, orange, and yellow for weddings.
Lisianthus: A versatile flower which is somewhat similar in form to a rose, but comes a lower cost. Available into the fall, lisianthus blossoms are available in classic bridal shades, such as white, pink, lavender, and purple. With their multiple blossoms per stem, lisianthus can be a very pretty way to fill out rose based bouquets and centerpieces while keeping the price down.
Snapdragons: With their large blossom heavy heads, brightly colored snapdragons make excellent cut flowers. Not the most useful shape for bouquets, snapdragons work well to add height and color to centerpieces. The vibrant shades of yellow, pink, and apricot are gorgeous when displayed in combination.
Sunflower: This late summer favorite lends a warm glow to wedding arrangements. The mini variety makes wonderful bouquets and centerpieces for a late summer or early fall wedding. Sunflowers pair especially well with gerbera daisies and mums for an earthy and rustic wedding design.
Zinnia: Often featuring several colors in one bright blossom, casual zinnias are in season from late summer to the late autumn. They are particularly appropriate for a wedding with a Mexican flair, and also are known to attract butterflies.
Rich Fiery Colors Are Traditional For Fall Wedding Flowers
As summer fades into fall, so does the number of wedding flowers in season. Autumn, in fact, has the most limited options for seasonal blossoms, falling as it does between the abundance of summer and the arrival of the tropical flowers in winter. That is not to say, however, that the fall does not have some gorgeous flowers to offer brides. Sometimes used in combination with the fruits of the harvest like pumpkins and gourds, autumn wedding flowers are known for their rich and fiery hues.
Many of the fall wedding flowers are a continuation of those which bloomed beginning in the later part of the summer, including:
New additions to the seasonal repertoire are:
Chinese lanterns: Bright orange pods which resemble paper lanterns, they are a wonderful addition to a rustic fall wedding centerpiece.
Dahlia: The national flower of Mexico, dahlias make hardy cut flowers. They grow in an astonishing array of both colors and blossom sizes, making dahlias a versatile wedding flower. Their round shape combines well with zinnias, mums, and sunflowers for wedding arrangements which are rustic yet alive with vibrant color and texture.
Marigold: These small yellow, orange, and red flowers are not one of the most common wedding flowers, but would combine well with other blossoms in traditional autumnal shades.
Statice: A papery purple filler flower that works equally well fresh or dried. It works well with other purple autumn flowers such as asters.
Tropical Flowers Come Into Season For Winter Weddings
Although we may not think of winter as peak growing season, there are in fact a large number of wedding flowers which come into season during the winter months. Many warm weather species, such as poinsettia, become widely available around Christmas. Some of the flowers which are widely available for spring weddings first start to come into season in the winter, including:
Winter flowers tend to be high contrast and pure in color, unlike the dusky tones of fall colors. Bright red, pure white, and forest green are the traditional hues for winter wedding bouquets and centerpieces. The two main winter wedding color schemes are the red, white, and green of Christmas or the icy white “Winter Wonderland” theme. These are some of the stars of the season:
Amaryllis: Available primarily in red and white, these large tropical flowers have a trumpet-like shape which resembles that of a lily. Just as showy as lilies, amaryllis are a favorite plant to force into bloom around Christmas, which makes them an excellent seasonal choice for a winter bride.
Camellia: These lovely round white or pink flowers have more in common in terms of appearance with spring flowers like peonies than the tropical winter blossoms like amaryllis or poinsettia. Perhaps best known as Coco Chanel's signature flower, white camellias would make a beautiful addition to a bouquet of roses.
Hypericum berries: A great filler, hypericum berries are primarily used in red or orange colors, and combine well with almost any winter flowers.
Holly: The forest green leaves and red berries of holly are instantly recognizable as one of the signature decorations of the holiday season. They work very well in combination with other Christmasy flowers in centerpieces, or when used alone to create wonderful wreaths for walls or to decorate the base of hurricane candle centerpieces.
Jasmine: An important flower in Asia, the delicate white blossoms of the jasmine flower add a lovely perfume to bridal bouquets. Due to their daintiness, jasmine flowers are generally used in combination with other larger flowers.
Poinsettia: These red or white tropical flowers are well known symbols of Christmas. Poinsettias are often displayed in potted form, and offer an easy way to quickly decorate large areas, such as a wedding ceremony altar or reception space. Due to their tropical origins, poinsettias are quite vulnerable to the cold, so care should be taken in transporting them in cold climates.
Many Favorite Wedding Flowers Are Available All Year
In addition to the flowers which are in available during specific seasons, there are a number of very popular wedding flowers which are offered year round. The top choices for cultivated bridal flowers at any time of the year are:
Baby's Breath: The cloud-like white flowers of baby's breath have long been used as a filler with roses or carnations, but are now taking on new life used by themselves in large masses. The ethereal effect of large vases of white baby's breath is becoming an increasingly popular decoration for wedding ceremonies.
Calla Lily: The epitome of sleek and modern, calla lilies, and especially mini-callas, are a perennial favorite of brides seeking a chic and clean flower for bouquets and centerpieces. They are available in a wide range of colors, including white, yellow, red, orange, and purple.
Carnations: Ruffly, round, and inexpensive, carnations are readily available in both natural colors like pink and white, as well as more artificial looking dyed greens and blues. Much like baby's breath, carnations are taking on new life when used not as filler flowers, but in large quantities to create wedding decorations like pomanders and wreaths.
Eucalyptus: The silvery blue tone of eucalyptus makes it an attractive accent to cool colored wedding flower designs, especially those featuring succulents.
Gardenia: The heady scent of showy gardenias have long been a favorite of women. In bloom during the summer, gardenias are now grown year round in greenhouses. Their white flowers with glossy dark green leaves coupled with their beautiful fragrance make gardenias a traditional flower to include in bridal bouquets, corsages, and centerpieces. Gardenia blossoms also look lovely floating in shallow bowls of water, as their dark green leaves set off the white flower to perfection.
Orchids: The remarkable variety of exotic orchids has made them one of the premier wedding flowers. Very sophisticated, quite expensive, and often dramatic, nothing can compete with an orchid bouquet or centerpiece for elegance. There is virtually no limit to the colors, shapes, and patterns in which exotic orchids can be ordered for weddings. Orchids are also a favorite flower for trendy submerged floral centerpieces.
Roses: The ultimate wedding flower, roses are available in infinite variety, and a beautiful array of classic bridal colors like white, pink, yellow, red, and lilac. In combination or alone, roses are hands down the favorite flower of brides.
Stephanotis: Small white star shaped flowers, stephanotis are a classic addition to a rose bridal bouquet, or can also be used en masse as the focal flower. The most distinctive thing about stephanotis is that they are almost always presented with a pearl tipped pin through the center of each blossom to secure them to the rest of the bouquet.
With so many fantastic options at any time of the year, a bride is sure to be able to find the perfect flowers to fit the style and budget of her wedding. Remember that seasonal blossoms will always be the most beautiful and best priced. If locally gown blossoms are available in the bride's favorite variety, so much the better. Perhaps the best thing about wedding flowers is that in their own way, they are all incredibly gorgeous.