Every year without fail, those of us in the floral industry have to go through the painful process of responding to those e-mails that respectfully ask for the best options available when it comes to Blue flowers to use for an event. Having been a purveyor of the most fabulous flowers available in the world for over twenty years the truth is Blue flowers are still not that easy to come by.
The most common blue flower used for events and everyday floral arrangements are Blue Hydrangeas, the good news is they are readily available all year round, the bad news where hydrangeas are concerned is that it is hard to find a true blue one. Hydrangeas from South America vary in color depending on where they are grown and how acidic the soil is. Some are a lighter blue than others but all have an almost two-tone blue and white appearance, others have a creamy off white and blue look. This is fine and they are all gorgeous but if you want a pure Blue hydrangea from Columbia or Ecuador its not happening. Dutch hydrangeas are fabulous and big and they have a good shelf life but that elusive blue is still an issue. I have found over the years that a blue hydrangea from Holland is as close as you can get to a true blue, but some are a bit of a darker blue, some are a lighter blue then there are ones that are a little more of a lavender blue, some are more of a purple shade of blue and so on. I have worked with the same buyer in Holland for twenty years and he knows exactly what I am looking for most of the time, but a large order of blue hydrangeas is not the best remedy for those of us with high blood pressure.
There are some staples when it comes to blue flowers, for example Iris. Good old varieties like “Ideal” were almost Blue but had a yellow stripe in the middle, and Iris is not really known as peoples first choice when it comes to a showstopper. Blue hyacinths have appeared on many a list of Blue flowers, the problem is they are about as blue as dark chocolate and they are only available for a few weeks of the year.
If you have made up your mind that blue is the only option for your big day, or your event or you just want to have blue flowers on your table for that dinner party you have planned there are a few winners, some of them may prove difficult to find but then again, that’s what you have me for ! ……………….there are various varieties of Delphiniums that come in blue, one in particular called “harlequin” is a beautiful mid Blue and there are other delphiniums that are in the same range of blue, also something a bit different is Eryngium, otherwise known as the common thistle. There are a few amazing varieties some of which are huge and have a bold Blue color. Blue Agapanthus is an option but its a nightmare, you will spend more time picking up the petals from the floor than taking care of your guests. Blue Cornflowers are a good one for the summer, as is muscari or grape hyacinth, Another good one is “Forget me not” from California, although they are tiny they still make me smile when I see them, which isn’t very often now days. The one blue flower that in my mind is not just the most beautiful blue flowers but is one of the most amazing flowers period, is Blue Gentiana. Blue trumpet like flowers that have been one of my favourites since my early days at the auctions in Holland.
So, as you see there are a few blue flowers out there that will make any event fabulous but beware there are some spoilers, flowers that will instantly destroy that classy look that you are striving for, and they are the dyed ones, yes the awful, gaudy, spine chilling, catastrophes that are dyed blue flowers. the biggest culprit is the blue rose, usually beautiful cream vendella roses dyed blue ! Its just not cricket. It doesnt matter how, where, when or why but they don’t do any event justice, sorry for being so frank but thats just the way I feel. I would rather swim with starving sharks or tie top sirloin steak to my arms and legs and throw myself to a pride of angry lions than use these. There are a few other real doozies like dyed blue orchids or gerbera daisies, none of these enhance any centerpiece like the real deal. Blue flowers do exist, you just have try a bit harder to find them.