How to create 2 (very different!) flower arrangements using gerberas

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Today’s rather cheerful blog post comes to you courtesy of fabulous florist Paula Pryke OBE. I’ve asked this inspirational designer to share her tips for creating displays using colourful gerberas. I’ve found it difficult to work with gerberas in the past  because their stems sometimes go floppy but today Paula is sharing two easy step-by-step guides to create gorgeous displays using gerberas. Plus, you can win a copy of her newly launched book Floristy Now in my competition. I’ve got two copies to give away so read on to find out how you can enter this fun giveaway..!

These happy flowers come in an array of eye-catching and joyful colours. At one time you could only get the regular large size, but over the years some very passionate gerbera growers have produced smaller ones to suit hand-tied bouquets and now you can get many exclusive varieties. There is the double-flowered small Pomponi gerbera and the shaggy Pasta or Springs large-flowered varieties, which are the novelties at the moment. Gerberas have hairy stems and so they don’t like to be placed in deep water as the stems can become waterlogged and soggy. They are very susceptible to bacteria, and so they benefit from having scrupulously clean containers and a drop of chlorine bleach is a good idea. Flower food is also essential for these versatile flowers.How to create a structured gerbera display

Gerbera United are a Dutch company with the vision to breed and produce new and unique gerberas. Their Ambition specials feature spidery-looking gerberas – some were originally called Pasta and some Springs. For this I chose to use their Pink Springs, Orange Springs and the red Pasta Romana varieties. I adore the intense colour of gerberas and over 30 years they have appeared in many of my designs. Now I mostly include them in gift work and contract work, but their colour range makes them useful when flower supply is not so plentiful – they can make a huge impact in autumn and winter. In the main I am a black centre fan, and tend to specify varieties with black eyes.

You will need:

  •  20–25 stems of Pink Springs, Orange Springs and Red Romana gerberas
  • 3 bunches of grey-flocked Mitsumata branches
  • a small bag of Spanish moss (Tillandsia usneoides)
  • a thin rectangular vase (scrupulously cleaned – gerberas are very susceptible to bacteria)
  • clear pot tape
  • a strong pair of sharp floristry scissors or secateurs
  1. When creating a vase arrangement for a home or office, I will often use branches as the structure. To keep the twigs upright I first create a grid with the clear tape, as shown here. Then I place the Mitsumata in a linear pattern to create a good structure to arrange and hold the gerberas. Gerberas do not like deep water because of their hairy stems, so fill the vase to a depth of just 10cm (4 inches) or so, mixed with some flower food.
  2. Place the gerberas one colour at a time throughout the design, taking care to decide the direction of the flower heads according to whether the arrangement is to be viewed as a front-facing piece or observed from all angles. Add all three varieties.
  3. Finally, conceal the tape by placing the Spanish moss across the top of the vase. Allow some to trail down for a softer edge.

 

How to make a gerbera table centrepiece

For this long, low table centre I chose to use a selection in various colours of the new Pomponi Germinis from the Dutch specialist gerbera growers, Holstein. They are multi-petalled and come in individual shades, but often in mixed coloured boxes, which appeals to me. I decided to combine them with another relative newcomer to the flower scene – the equally vibrant Jatropha integerrima ‘Firecracker.’

You will need

  • a few stems of variegated or green reeds. I used Phornium, the New Zealand flax
  • 5 stems of Jatropha integerrima ‘Firecracker’
  • a box of Pomponi Germinis or other small gerberas
  • a long, low container: this clever glass vase is perfect for the dining table and is from www.chive.com
  • a strong pair of sharp floristry scissors or secateurs
  1. As always when working with gerberas, make sure the container is thoroughly cleaned with chlorine, and then fill with water.
  2. First weave through the flax leaves to give the design movement and make the flower heads work together. The long leaves suit the linear nature of the design. Cut the Jatropha into small branches and add to the vase.
  3. Finally, trim and add the gerbera flower heads to the design. Mix up the colours and try to contrast them against one another to make the combinations more punchy.

If you’ve been inspired and would like to try out more floristry DIYs why not enter my giveaway to win a copy of Paula Pryke’s new book Floristry Now?? There are plenty of ways you can enter the competition via the Rafflecopter widget below and I have TWO copies of the book to give away to two lucky winners. Enter now – best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway open to UK residents only, giveaway runs from 3rd March – 12th March 2017.

Author: Cassiefairy

Cassie is a freelance writer with a Masters degree in lifestyle promotion studies. She loves to 'get the look for less' so regularly shares thrifty fashion posts, DIY interior design ideas and low-cost recipes on her blog.

7 Comments

  1. The rose xx

  2. My all time favourite flowers are tulips – they always make me smile and I love the colours.

  3. My all time favourite flower is the rose 🙂 x

  4. I love scented roses – but peony, tulips and orchids are fab too

  5. Sweet peas ~

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