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Seasonal Foliage: Getting the Blues

The colour blue, or to be more accurate, blue-grey, may not be the obvious choice when considering cut foliage but including it in designs not only accentuates bright, bold colours but will also complement softer pastel combinations.


Eucalyptus

Extremely popular with brides and therefore used extensively in wedding work there is a good range of species of Eucalyptus commercially available, some of which are grown in the UK.


Eucalyptus cinerea

Soft, circular leaves that become more oval as they mature. Commonly known as Gum Tree, due to its sticky sap, it is a primary food for Koala bears.


Eucalyptus gunnii

The young leaves of this variety are the ‘bluest’ of all Eucalyptus, although the colour does mellow with age.


Eucalyptus parvifolia

A fast-growing evergreen with grey-green foliage that is slightly aromatic. Not as structured in shape as other Eucalyptus, but a good filler foliage.


Eucalyptus pulverulenta

Also known as Baby Blue, the heart-shaped leaves have a silvery white blush. This is the one most brides go for in their bouquets, although its sticky sap makes it tricky to use in wired work.


Eucalyptus Care

  • Temperature Range: 2-5°C.

  • Use secateurs or a sharp knife to re-cut stems.

  • Remove as much foliage as possible below the water line and don’t overcrowd containers.

  • Change water frequently, flower food is not required.

  • Eucalyptus needs high humidity to stop it from drying out, mist daily and store away from direct heat and draughts.

  • Wash hands and tools frequently with hot soapy water to remove the sap.



Phlebodium

Pronounced ‘flee-BOH-dee-um.’


Common Name: Blue fern


Although delicate in appearance, Blue fern is quite robust with a vase life of between 10 – 14 days. Re-cut stems with scissors or a sharp knife and stand in clean, shallow water without flower food.


Availability: March – September.


Temperature Range: 12-15°C.


Display away from cold spots and draughts.







Ceropegia

Pronounced ‘se-ro-PEE-gee-uh.’


Common Name: Chain of hearts, Sweetheart vine.


If you are looking for a blue-grey trailing foliage, this is the one. An evergreen succulent, capable of growing up (or down!) to 4m, it can be wound into and around designs in long lengths or cut into small sections for wired work.


Temperature Range: 22-25°C.


Cut directly from a plant, which should be kept in a dry, warm spot, away from the cold. Mist regularly, but only water when the top of the compost is dry.


Images provided by thejoyofplants.co.uk

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