At Spongetta's Garden we believe in not leaving any flower behind. Especially during wedding season! Of the thousands we cut each year, those not sold in bouquets are dried for wreaths and bouquets in the fall. What not used in those, the flower heads are cut up for loose everlasting confetti mixes.
Dried flowers are enjoying a well deserved resurgence! People want to invest in beauty that will last. With proper care, dried arrangements and wreaths will stay vibrant and beautiful for a year or more.
There is a difference between dried flowers and preserved flowers. Air dried flowers are bunched and hung in a dark, warm, dry space with for 2-3 weeks until the moisture in the flower heads and stems has dissipated. Silica can also be used specifically on flower heads to draw out the moisture in just days is perfect for something special like a wedding bouquet or funeral flowers, but requires special safety measures. Glycerin is a liquid that replaces the water in a stem and leaves the flowers more pliable and less likely to shatter like statice. We only air dry our flowers in the rafters of the hay barn.
Caring for dried flowers takes some forethought. The three enemies are friction, moisture and light. For a wreath, it is best to avoid a door used frequently, without the protection of a storm door and facing south in direct sunlight. Careful placement makes all the difference!
Our favorite flowers to dry and use in wreaths include:
Ammobium aka Winged Everlasting
Celosia in all forms including cockscomb, plume and wheat
Gomphrena, Statice and Strawflowers
Larkspur and Delphinium
Peonies and Lisianthus for focal
Globe Thistle, Sea Holly and Eucalyptus
Gold Yarrow, Tansy and other perennials
Seed pods like Scabiosa, Nigella and Orlaya
Marigold and Oklahoma Zinnia
Artemisias such as Silver King and Sweet Annie
Herbs such as Oregano and Sage
Grains and grasses
Stock petals for scent confetti
Foraged seed heads, especially Queen Anne's Lace and Dock