Aside from your wedding dress and venue, your wedding day flowers are one of the most important design elements of your wedding. The bridal bouquet tradition goes back to the Middle Ages. During those times, brides of nobility wore their finest jewelry on their wedding day, but peasant brides wore their favorite flowers, many times as a garland around their head or neck. Today, flowers are a staple in wedding decor. Not only do fresh blooms make gorgeous accents but they are symbolic of new life. However, you can easily go overboard on the floral budget if you’re not careful.
The best way to save on fresh flowers is to choose varieties that are in season for your wedding date. Plan on booking your florist about six or seven months before your wedding, that way you avoid paying more in labor and delivery fees. Before your first meeting with your florist, you should pull pictures from magazines and online resources of floral bouquets that you like to show your florist. Be sure to ask your florist what blooms are in season for your area. Sometimes, local varieties can save you the most money. A veteran florist will also be able to tell you which flowers hold up best under the elements in your area. Remember, your delicate white roses will wilt in the hot sun at your summer wedding in Palm Springs (trust me, it was 103 degrees for my 07/07/07 wedding). The following floral guide, provided by the experts at Martha Stewart Weddings, outlines the wedding blooms available to us here on the West Coast (for a complete list of seasonal flowers in all regions of the U.S., please click on the link above):
Freesia, Lily of the Valley, Pansy, Poppy, Ranunculus, Rose, Tulip, Violet
Begonia, Delphinium, Gardenia, Hydrangea, Pansy, Poppy, Rose, Violet
Chrysanthemum, Cosmos, Coreopsis, Gerber Daisy, Hydrangea, Lisianthius, Pomegranate, Rose, Rose Hip
Acacia, Evergreens, Forsythia, Fruit Blossoms, Paper-Whites, Seeded Eucalyptus, Tulip
Seasonless Varieties (All Regions)
Anemone, Arianrose, Calla Lily, Casablanca Lily, Champagne Rose, Forced Bulbs, Freesia, Gardenia, Ivies, Lily of the Valley, Message Rose, Ranunculus, Sarracenia (pitcher plant), Stargazer Lily, Stephanotis, Vines, Virginia Rose, White Dendrobium Orchid