We usually just post photos of the end result of our work , but do you want a little peek of what goes into getting all of those perfect petals? Weeks before the big day, we are meeting with our floral supplier Mt. Newton Floral about where to get the best… rose, hydrangea, peony, fibre optic grass, ferns, and on and on. We consider local versus imported, the current quality, quantities and colours of various growers’ products and more. Thankfully we have an awesome friendship with the team at Mt. Newton so it’s not too painful–they go the extra mile for us because that’s who they are… and we bring them absurd amounts of chocolate and goodies.

For the most part, Mt. Newton gets us almost everything we use in terms of floral supply because they have access to local and imported products: whether it’s a flower from their farm or another local grower or a fiddlehead fern imported from Hawaii. We not only love the people at Mt. Newton and think they are the best at what they do, but we are happy to be supporting a family-owned and operated business located on the Saanich Peninsula. Here’s a look at their operation and what goes into getting those perfect flowers.

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Vanessa going to check out what is coming into bloom on Mt. Newton’s flower farm with Ryan, who helps runs the family operation his father started in the 80s.DSC_2017 DSC_2001 DSC_2007 DSC_2010 DSC_2011Mt Newton100_0694100_0721

DSC_1942Some of the beautiful David Austen roses they brought in for us this week. Ryan and his dad, Michael, are up in the wee hours of the morning buying all kinds of product to the island from around BC, Washington, California and beyond.

DSC_1956Ryan inspecting Mt. Newton’s first sunflower of the season (they grow their own crops as well as bring in local and import products).

 If you’ve been following us for awhile, you might remember the pictures below from Ryan’s wedding–more than five years ago (we arranged the flowers). Funny story: Ryan and Britt came to our shop to talk about designs, and before Britt knew what was happening Ryan, Vanessa and Jenny were talking in flower lingo and had figured out exactly what she wanted for her bouquet (which–thankfully– turned out to be exactly what she wanted for her bouquet). Then for the big day, Ryan scooped up some good deals on beautiful flowers, threw Vanessa and Jenny in Britt’s parents’ garage for the day with the flowers and supplies and took off. We thought about walking out, but we like Britt too much so we set up the venue for her, cursed Ryan a lot, and then got over it when we saw how handsome he looked. (Kidding, Ryan is one of the nicest guys in the world). We were touched to be a part of their intimate wedding.  Here’s a look back:

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Still after all these years, one of our favourite weddings. It was so beautiful in its simplicity. Our favourite part was when just as they were saying their vows, the sun came streaming through the poplar trees that lined the property.
(All wedding pictures courtesy of the lovely Karen McNeil.)

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The bouquet was featured in WeddingBells and we still see these images in brides’ collections of inspiration.

brrec-015 brrec-020brrec-023brrec-009brrec-016 brrec-032 brrec-034brcer083Our silly, beautiful Jenny–and Vanessa’s arm…

DSC_1957And now there are these guys (Britt and Ryan’s twins), who love to “help” at the farm.

Now you know where all those beautiful petals come from!

As summer has turned to fall, the last of the busy wedding season is trailing off and I am just coming up for air. Over the next few weeks, I will be blogging about my summer weddings and events including the lavender farm photo shoot in July, how colourful florals helped sell the executive Saanich house, Anjali & Alex’s wedding in July, Lori & Rob, Fazilat and Adrian in August, Steph and James’ autumnal-themed wedding in October, and the foliage-inspired wedding of Marena and Mike at the Empress in September. You will see and hear more about this wedding, but this was the event where I got to bring together all my favourite grasses, ferns and foliage.

All my favourite things

Lately, some of the elements I love working with include: chocolate lace, purple acacia, snowberries, pink astilbe, miscanthus grass, oak leaves, silver dollar eucalyptus, purple smokebush and red kangaroo paws.

Chocolate Lace

Oak leaves

Miscanthus grass

Purple smokebush

And when Barb from French Kiss Events recently asked me about my favourite flower of the moment, I said “Does foliage count? Because I am in love with Plumosa Fern.”

Plumosa Fern

Plumosa is actually not a true fern – it belongs to the same family as lilies and garlic and can be toxic for pets. This fern has a delicate, feathery texture, and if you were around in the 80s, you likely saw a lot of it paired with red roses and baby’s breath. However, I want to advocate for the comeback of the Plumosa Fern as a soft, textured final touch to the look and feel of any warm fall-inspired wedding or event.

 

Plumosa fern as a final touch to the table