There's nothing more beautiful than a romantic floral arrangement, and nothing more saddening than one that wilts in the sun. In order to keep your blooms looking their best throughout your wedding day—especially if you're tying the knot during the hot summer months—it's important you plan ahead. To help ensure your bouquet looks perfect all day long, we spoke to the experts and gathered the best tips of the trade.
You've heard of the "fake cake," now meet the backup bouquet. "Brides should consider ordering a separate bouquet specifically for photos," suggests Victoria Ahn of Designs By Ahn in Manhattan. "That way, the ceremony bouquet can be kept indoors in a cooler environment and will be fresh when it comes time to walk down the aisle." As an added bonus, this game plan gives brides room to have fun with different bouquet styles for the ceremony and reception.
Keep It Under Wraps
While bouquets with exposed stems exude a laid-back, natural feel, the consequences of one might send you into a panic. Chad Cannizzaro Jr. of Carroll's Florist recommends that brides fully wrap the stems of their bouquets—he even uses fabric left over from gown alterations to ensure a perfect match to the day's palette. "Aside from looking beautiful, it allows for moisture to remain in the wrap so the flowers don't dry out," he explains.
If you're thirsty during photos, your flowers are, too. "Having a spray bottle nearby is a great idea," suggest Ahn. "Spraying water directly on the flowers often also keeps them hydrated and fresh." Whenever possible, store the bouquet in the shade and spritz it with a generous amount of H2O as you chug your own.
If it's going to be 90 degrees at your desert wedding, maybe the best bouquet option isn't made of flowers at all. "Succulents work beautifully in low pieces and come in many different shades and forms," says Cannizzaro. "Soft, billowy greens give us a lush base to work with and will not wilt the way flowers will in the heat." Another added bonus? They're beautiful, fun, and long-lasting—just the way a marriage should be.
If your heart is set on gardenias, your date should be set in the cooler months. "They turn brown very quickly in heat," advises Ahn. While everyone has a favorite flower, the truth is they each thrive in different environments, so Ahn also advises against bulb plants like tulips, hyacinths, and daffodils which will droop as the temperature rises.
Trust the Experts
The best advice of all? Take the experts' advice. "Find a florist that you really trust, and then trust him or her" says Cannizzaro. "As floral designers we work with flowers every day and know what flowers are going to work best for your time of year, and your venue."