Enjoying Hardy Asters

aster flower floral garden perennial plaza flowersHardy Asters are a very popular flower for late summer and autumn. When they bloom, they look similar to daisies, and people often like to use them as flowers in bouquets. However, these flowers are not ideal for cutting gardens. Asters come in many different colors, but are typically found in shades of blue or lavender. Hardy Asters, like its fellow autumn perennial the Hardy Mum, can find difficulty surviving winters to regrow in spring, but with proper care, this can be achieved. In this article, we will be looking at the proper way to care for Hardy Asters, as well as what makes these autumn flowers so special!

Asters are such a cherished autumn flower, that many hybrids have been created that give the plant a wide range of colors, heights and other characteristics. They are classified as perennials, and in the right conditions can survive winters depending on how harsh the climate is. Typically, Asters can survive in USDA Growing Zones 3-9. Asters should be planted in the spring, like Hardy Mums, to promote root growth throughout the growing season. Plants should be lightly fertilized, avoiding excess nitrogen in the formula as this will cause the growth of excessive foliage.perennial aster blue garden floral plaza flowers Asters like well-drained soil that is slightly alkaline to acidic. They should be situated in full sun if available, but can also do well in partial shade. Asters should be watered daily in the mornings, but DO NOT water the leaves, as Hardy Asters are very vulnerable to leaf fungus.

Additionally, these flowers should be planted around 3-4 feet apart in order to receive proper air circulation. Asters are prone to mildew, and air circulation can help decrease the chances of your plants getting this mildew. This is also why Asters are not ideal in a cutting garden setting. When you plant a cutting garden, everything should be densely packed to allow many different types of flowers to grow in a small space. For more information on cutting gardens, please see our blog post!

Asters can grow anywhere between six inches to six feet, depending on the cultivar and the growing conditions/climate. They will begin to bloom in late summer/early autumn, but some are known to bloom earlier. Asters are also known for attracting bees and butterflies, often hosting butterfly larvae. They are also deer resistant, but may attract pests like aphids and rabbits. Asters are also self-seeding flowers, meaning that at the end of their growing season, they will drop seeds to help promote growth of more flowers in the spring. If you wish to inhibit this growth, simply cut off the blooms at the end of the blooming season. You may also wish to divide the plants in half every few years to spread them out to promote better air circulation.

Overall, Asters are a very popular plant to have in your Autumn garden. Their bright, colorful daisy-like appearance is very popular in bouquets and their affinity with bees and butterflies makes them great to liven up the garden. They are capable of surviving winters, making them a popular perennial that you can enjoy year after year. And with their ability to self-seed, you can be sure that you can have a booming population of these plants within a few years.

For more information on the care of Hardy Asters or other flowers, feel free to contact us with any questions you may have!aster perennial floral garden plaza flowers

The Joy of Autumn Hardy Mums

mums garden potted plants flowers plaza flowersFew autumn flowers are more iconic than chrysanthemums, or mums for short. The most well-known type of mum are Autumn Hardy Mums, also known as Garden Mums. These bright, cheerful flowers are perfect in the chilly climate of your fall garden, and with the right care, can even come back in the spring and last through many growing seasons. These plants are considered perennials, but gardeners often wonder why they are unable to keep them alive throughout the winter. In this article, we will explore how to plant and care for mums for longevity, and take a closer look at why these truly one-of-a-kind flowers are so special.

A main difference between hardy mums and florist mums is root growth. Florist mums are typically used in bouquets and arrangements, and will not survive the winter if they are planted because they do not possess the necessary root growth. Hardy mums, on the other hand, will produce lasting roots that help the plant survive the winter. Many people mums in pots plaza flowers re-plant their mums annually, as they are not overly expensive to re-buy year after year. However, if you want your mums to last, you should consider planting them in the spring. Although you are less likely to find a wide assortment of colors, getting your mums planted in the spring is important in promoting root growth, as they will have the entire growing season to get their roots situated to survive the frosts.

Most perennial cultivars of this plant will survive the winter in Zones 5 to 9. Any colder climate will make it very difficult for the plant to live through harsh, northern winters. The earlier in the season you can get your mums planted, the better. Many people will wait until fall to buy mums because they desire a wider range of colors than mums in luxury containers plaza flowers philadelphia floristwhat’s available in the spring, but we recommend that once you see mums available, that you purchase and plant as fast as possible. This is the best way to ensure that they will have time to establish roots and prosper.

When planting mums, be sure to put them in a location where they can get at least six hours of sunlight per day. If your mums don’t get enough sunlight, they will become tall, leggy, and produce fewer blooms. Mums have shallow roots that do not like competition, meaning that they need to be watered frequently, and prefer well-drained soil. As stated before, plants should be watered frequently (about an inch of water per week once the plant is established), but you should not soak the foliage, as this will encourage disease. Mums planted in the spring should be fertilized but mums planted in the fall do not require fertilizing.

Mums come in many different shapes and sizes, but are great overall for mass garden coverage. Many mums are very full of blooms, and can be put side by side to densely fill up a flowerbed space. Their wide range of colors also help to really make your autumn garden as customizable as possible. Easy to take care of as annuals, rewarding to preserve as perennials, and a truly iconic autumn flower, Autumn Hardy Mums are sure to delight anyone who chooses to plant them.

 

Have any question regarding the planting/care of these beautiful flowers? Feel free to contact us with any concerns you may have, or to order some of these flowers yourself!purple yellow mums flowers plaza flowers

Planting and Caring for Roses – By Plaza Flowers

rose garden roses flowers butterfly

Photo courtesy of rose-gardening-made-easy.com

Although June has passed and National Rose Month is behind us, many of our customers arrive home from the nursery with a wide variety of potted roses. Others may have ordered bare root roses online or through mail order. But whatever the case may be, a question we always receive is “What steps can I take to ensure that my plant will bloom the most beautifully?”

The prospect of growing roses may seem intimidating, and many of you have heard the horror stories of roses having problems with insects, diseases, and other issues. However, Clair G. Martin, author of the book “100 English Roses for the American Garden” states that “While problems do exist, they are, for the most part, cosmetic and easily overcome with basic horticultural practices”.

Below we’ll give you step by step instructions to planting your roses in order to fortify your knowledge of growing these truly one-of-a-kind plants, and hopefully answer any questions you may have.

  1. Soak the roots and stems. Dry root roses should be submerged for 24 hours to hydrate the tissue of the roots and stems. Potted roses (pot and woody trunk) should be submerged for two hours. Remember, roses love water and plenty of it at the time of planting will greatly strengthen the plant.
  2. Prune dead wood and damaged stems. Cut out any damaged or dead portion of each plant with sharp pruning shears. Always cut on an angle. This is not the time to perform selective pruning to force blooms. That will be done next spring.
  3. Prepare the hole for planting. For potted roses, cut the entire bottom from the biodegradable container and dig a hole that is three inches wider and deeper than the pot. Prepare a mixture of rose garden soil of either 50% soil & 50% bone meal, or one part potting soil, one part compost, one part bagged manure. Place three inches of the mixture in the bottom of the hole. Place the pot in the hole. Backfill with soil mixture you created. For dry root roses, dig a hole that is twice the distance across the roots. The depth of the hole should be three inches greater than the distance from the bud union to bottom of roots. Place three inches of the soil mixture in the bottom of the hole. Hold the plant in the hole and backfill with the remainder of the mixture. Whether you roots were dry or potted, your soil line should be one inch higher the bud union.
  4. The Philadelphia Rose Society states that “The most important thing roses need is water”. Create a shallow moatblooming garden basket roses plaza flowers near the perimeter of your hole and fill it with water. Allow the water to seep, then repeat three times. At this point, you cannot overwater your rose.
  5. You will notice that much of your soil mixture has settled and likely exposed your bud union. Replenish with the soil mixture if settlement was two inches or more. Cover the soil with three to four inches of mulch, mounding at the perimeter of the plant to create a moat so less water runs away from the plant.
  6. Fill your moat with water daily. After the roots are established (about three weeks) you can move your watering schedule to three times a week. Water daily during hot days or periods of drought in the growing season.
  7. Fertilize your roses with any commercially available rose food. Follow the dosage instructions carefully.

 

Living rose plants work well in mixed plant baskets, and many other beautiful arrangements you could create at home by planting your own rose bushes. For more information on planting and caring for roses, feel free to reach out to us online! You may also wish to visit the American Rose Society for an in-depth look at things like winter care, common pests for roses, and much more to give you the best growing experience possible! These beautiful flowers are as iconic as they are beautiful, and growing them is truly a joy. Dozen Roses Beautiful Plaza Flowers

A Guide to Extending the Vase Life of Roses

Roses are the most popular of all cut flowers sold in the U.S. The American love affair with roses began in colonial times and has grown through the centuries. Now florists sell hundreds of different varieties of hybrid tea roses, mostly imported from South America. Although roses are familiar, their proper care is not.Beautiful Rose Flowers Garden Care Plaza Flowers

Follow these simple steps to prolong the vase life of your cut roses:

  1. Fill a clean, deep vase with warm water and add the flower food obtained from your florist. Be sure to follow the directions on the package.
  2. Remove leaves that will be below the waterline. Leaves in water will promote bacterial growth.
  3. Select a sharp knife. Do not use shears to cut stems because they usually pinch the vessels closed.
  4. Recut stems underwater, this will prevent air from entering the stem. Place the flowers in the vase solution you’ve prepared.
  5. Change the water and recut stems daily. This will keep the end of the stems free of debris that blocks water flow.
  6. Display your roses away from direct sunlight and warm or cold drafts.
  7. You can revive a wilted rose by cutting the stem and submerging the entire rose in hot water for about 30 minutes. Remember to always cut stems under clean water.

Beautiful Rose Flowers Garden Care Plaza FlowersProper care can often double the vase life of roses. Remember, once the roses are cut they begin to die. The enjoyment you receive from those roses, depends on how long you can delay their death. The steps listed above simply maximize the amount of water the reaches the bloom. This delays dehydration and death.

If you have any further question in regards to the care of roses, or caring for any other plant, please contact us with any questions you may have! You may also wish to refer to the American Rose Society’s website for more information on care of roses and the rose growing community!Beautiful Rose Flowers Gardening Care Plaza Flowers

Norristown’s Oldest Florist Merges with Plaza Flowers

Undated photo of Anna in front of her store

Undated photo of Anna in front of her store

Norristown, PA – May 28, 2015 – Today marks the beginning of an exciting merge of two local florists in Norristown; Plaza Flowers on Egypt Road and Anna Catanese Flower Shop on DeKalb Street. Both shops have endured for generations, giving customers high-quality products for decades, but only Anna Catanese Flower Shop enters their hundredth year as the oldest florist in Norristown, Montgomery County. Both shops plan to bring their valuable wisdom and loyal clientele together to forge a bond that will propel them forward for generations to come.

Eagleville Florist Gift Basket Flowers

Chris Drummond & Heather Tuckey, Owners of Plaza Flowers

In order to understand how a business becomes ingrained so deeply into the heritage of a community, we must first investigate the origin of this proud business and the individuals who began it.

 

First florist at 321 DeKalb, only 9 feet wide!

First florist at 321 DeKalb, only 9 feet wide!

Domenic Catanese immigrated to the U.S. in 1888. Shortly thereafter, he began growing fruits, vegetables, and flowers on his eleven-acre farm on Tremont Street in Norristown. Around 1900, he opened 20th Century Florist and Seed at 321 DeKalb Street to sell his produce and seeds. Flower sales were slow at first but grew quickly, leading to the addition floral design and delivery services around 1910. In 1915, Domenic’s daughter-in-law & floral designer, Anna, purchased the store with a $3500 loan from neighboring businesswomen. She then employed three of her family to help make the Flower Shop a success. Read more

The Farm-Direct Difference

The Farm-Direct Difference

My family has been buying and selling flowers for three generations. I have very fond memories of learning about flowers, and how to buy them, from my grandfather. He began buying flowers on Ludlow Street in Philadelphia prior to World War II. Back then, all buying was done in person. Wholesale buyers visited the market and hand selected many of the flowers. When I learned to buy as a teenager, I often hand-selected many of the flowers that we would sell at Plaza Flowers. Read more