Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Real Weddings: Lexi and Matt

Lexi and Matt were married in Ellicott City at the end of October. While it rained most of the day, it didn’t seem to diminish the joy that this beautiful couple shared on their special day.


The bride’s bouquet was full of fall colored dahlias and a few sprigs of scented geranium from Locust Point Flowers and Belvedere Farm.


Marina created a really cool, modern arrangement for the ceremony which took place at Howard County Historical Society Museum and Library. The arrangement was then moved to Rumor Mill Restaurant where the reception was held.

IMG_0711 The arrangement was layered with dahlias, snap dragons, salvia, tuberose, hydrangeas and monkey balls.

Just married Congratulations to Lexi and Matt!

Special thanks to Rich Riggins for the Wedding Day photos.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Real Weddings: Shauna and Mark

Shauna & Mark Shauna and Mark were a joy to work with. When I met them back in December 2008, they were excited about their wedding, but not that interested in the flowers. They had some ideas and colors, but basically they said…do whatever-just make it look nice.  We love when couples say that!

The bouquets were made up of dahlias, celosia, salvia and scented geranium from Locust Point Flowers and Belvedere Farm. We also used nandina berries from our friend Kathy York at Scarborough Farm.  The colors looked great against the girls green dresses.

Shauna & Mark

Shauna & Mark

The wedding was held at the Cloisters on a perfect Fall day.

Shauna & Mark

Shauna had collected over 70 pieces of depression era glassware that we used for the centerpieces and to decorate the reception area. Each table was uniquely decorated and looked perfect in the space.

Shauna & Mark

Shauna & Mark The cake, decorated by Jen Bryant, was covered in deep red dahlias, antiquing hydrangeas, and nandina berries.

Shauna & Mark

I guess we did good! It’s always great to get a note like this from a bride!

“I think you probably know by my reaction that I loved the flowers :)  They were absolutely stunning.  Thank you, thank you, thank you, a million times thank you!  I don't know if you remember that when we first met I didn't really "care" about the flowers because all flowers are beautiful and I knew that whatever flowers we had would be lovely.  But I was so wrong. Probably because I didn't know flowers could be that pretty!!  And they smelled amazing.  The bouquets, the boutonnieres, the cake (oh my gosh - the cake!) and centerpieces - everything - just perfect.”

Congratulations to Shauna and Mark!

Special thanks to Carol Masica for the great photos!

Monday, December 21, 2009

LoCoFlo Needs a Ride

Since we started, LoCoFlo has delivered flowers in lots of different vehicles including 0ur personal cars, our friends cars, borrowed mini-vans and rented vans. Most have been adequate (Marina’s car, my car), some have even been good (Chris’s mini van, Carla’s Rogue) but none have been ideal.


I don’t  want to buy a vehicle right now (even though we need one). I already have a car. It’s just too small for most of what I need. I could trade it in, but I like my little car- especially for day to day driving.  I’m also trying to target our resources on some other things this year (marketing materials, staffing, space) Maybe when my Scion finally dies it will make sense, but right now, I’m not convinced that’s the answer. Unless…

I could buy a car  and share it with someone or several someones.  My friend Jordan shares a car with some one her neighbors. It could be a logistical challenge, but it would be less expensive and could work since I wouldn’t need the ride all the time.

I’m also looking into the Zipcars  at Hopkins. It would be convenient, it’s pretty cost effective and they have some larger vehicles. They also offer a business membership which would allow us to have our designers and delivery folks on the same account.

What do you think? Does anyone else have any other creative ideas?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Oh No…The Dreadful Bouquet

As I mentioned in an earlier post, one of the things I am doing this winter is catching up on my reading. I am about 3/4 of the way through Amy Stewart’s Wicked Plants. Its a great read for a busy time because you can read it in little bits. Each Wicked Plant has a couple pages dedicated to it. So I was going along at a pretty good clip…Mandrake…Marijuana…Oleander…Opium Poppy…and then…out of the blue…The Dreadful Bouquet.

  021_Nasrin&Ulric by Local Color Flowers Baltimore.

Warning to brides: Do Not FREAK OUT if you see one of these flowers in your wedding bouquet. In order for the dreadfulness of these flowers to become apparent you have to EAT them-in large quantities.  Here are some of the ingredients to the “dreadful bouquet”.

Lily of the Valley: This dainty white flower with beautiful green leaves is a favorite of brides.  We love using it because it holds up well in bouquets. Apparently it contains cardiac glycosides…a toxin that if consumed (EATEN..don’t forget…EATEN) in large amounts can cause headache, nausea and heart failure.


Sweet Pea: The perky white flower sticking out of this bouquet is another favorite of brides. It’s wonderfully fragrant and has beautiful twisty greens that are great in arrangements. They also come in a million colors-making them a spring “go to” flower. According to Stewart, sweet peas are only MILDLY poisonous. Although paralysis, weakness and tremors don’t sound MILD to me!


The list goes on… tulip bulbs that cause rashes and swelling, dermatitis brought on by lilies, bleeding hearts that cause seizures, mums that serve up a dose of swollen eyes and monkshood that kill you! Who knew something so pretty could be so dangerous (WHEN EATEN!)


I think the lesson here is two-fold: 1) Do NOT eat your wedding bouquet. 2) Respect the miracles that nature presents to us. Love the earth and enjoy the beauty and mystery in flowers. They are more powerful than you know.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Real Weddings: Erica and Dave

Erica and Dave were married on a beautiful Sunday in May at Gramercy Mansion. With their family and friends surrounding them, the couple enjoyed a day full of joy and love.


Erica carried a bouquet of purple stock, white tulips, succulents and lily of the valley.

bloom0070The grooms boutonniere was made up of a little succulent, an allium and a few sprigs of rosemary.


Erica’s friends looked great in shades of purple. They carried bouquets of white tulips, white and purple stock and grape hyacinths.bloom0086


It was a  pleasure working with two such great people. Erica and Dave and their families were so wonderful to work with and plan with. We really enjoyed the time we spent with them. Much love and happiness to Erica and Dave as they begin their new life together!

Thanks to Roman Grinev Photography for these beautiful pictures.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Real Weddings: Cary and Chris

Hencken367 Cary and Chris were married on June 20 at the Baltimore Basilica. If you haven’t been to the Basilica before, you should check it out. It is a beautiful, elegant location for a wedding ceremony.

Cary carried a bouquet full of peonies, scabiosa (little purplish flowers in the bouquet –much cuter than the name lets on),  white dahlias, white campanula and white sweet peas. Her bouquet had a special touch too. It was wrapped in her baby bonnet that her mom had saved for just this occasion. It looked perfect!



The bridesmaids bouquets were filled with pink peonies, pink and white campanula, pink yarrow and mint.Hencken602


Hencken302 The wedding reception was held at the The Howard Peters Rawlings Conservatory and Botanic Gardens of Baltimore. There was no need for flower arrangements at the reception, as the location is full of the most beautiful flowers! The bride and groom did however choose to have little cones full of flower petals delivered to the Conservatory for their guests to throw at the end of the evening.

Hencken790One great thing about doing this work is the relationships that are built. It was great to see Cary and Chris at LoCoFlo’s end of season party a few weeks ago. They looked happy and in love…like all newlyweds should! Congratulations to Cary and Chris! Much love and happiness to you both!

Thank so much to Rachel Smith Photography for the beautiful photos!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Things I’ll Do In the Winter: Read

Even before weddings end for the season, I start to to make a list of things I’ll do in the winter. Some of them are not LoCoFlo related like go to the dentist or see more movies. But by and large, my list of winter To Do’s are for LoCoFlo.

On the list this winter is:  READ. It’s not that I haven’t read in the past 9 months. I just haven’t read as much as I would have liked to. I keep a running list of books I see or that people tell me about so that when winter comes, I can dig in.

On the list for this winter are:

Wicked Plants: The Weed that Killed Lincoln's Mother & Other Botanical Atrocities by Amy Stewart.wickedplantssm Author of Flower Confidential, the book that inspired me to start LoCoFlo-Amy Stewart is one of my faves. She writes for my favorite garden blog-Garden Rant and has several books under her belt as well. This book came out at the end of the summer and I still haven’t read it. It’s first on the list. 



Waking up in Eden by Lucinda Fleeson. This is the true story of a  woman who moves to Kauai to work for the National Tropical Botanical Garden. I have fond memories of Kauai and the stunning flowers and plants there. It’s sad to read that Kauai is losing native plants faster than any other place in the world. I’m excited to read about Ms. Fleeson attempt to reverse this trend.

green flowers Green Flowers: Unexpected Beauty for the Garden, Container or Vase by Alison Hoblyn. Everyone loves green flowers. This year we did one wedding that exclusively used green flowers and several others that used green flowers as accents. I’m hoping to get some ideas for LoCoFlo and for my own garden.

whiteOnward and Upward in the Garden by Katherine White.   This is collection of essays that originally showed up in the New Yorker. The author, Katherine White is the wife of writer E. B. White-of Charlotte’s Web fame. These are no ordinary garden essays. Ms. White looks at the cult of garden catalogs-those special jewels that many of us obsess over – especially in the winter.

There are many, many, more. I’ll let you know when I get through these first four. I can’t wait!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving Thanks

For Thanksgiving, I wanted to share a poem with you from Mary Oliver. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


My work here is loving the world.

Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird-

     equal seekers of sweetness. 

Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums.

Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.


Are my boots old? Is my coat torn?

Am I no longer young, and still not half perfect? Let me

     keep my mind on what matters,

which is my work.


which is standing still and learning to be


The phoebe, the delphinium.

The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture.

Which is mostly rejoicing, since all the ingredients are here,




which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart

     and these body-clothes,

a mouth with which to give shouts of joy

     to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam,

telling them all, over and over, how it is

     that we live forever.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A Night Out…with LoCoFlo

This has been a challenging, exciting, BUSY year. To celebrate the end of a great year, LoCoFlo teamed up with Jordan Faye Block to host an End of the Season cocktail party at her new gallery/event space in Federal Hill called BE.  I was a little nervous, since we pulled this party together at the last minute-but what a great time we had!

_MG_6635 IMG_0796 

One the things I love about this “job” is all the great people I get to meet and work with. I was so excited that some of this year’s brides came! Not only did they come out, they brought their husbands, moms and friends too! We also had brides who booked with us for next year and brides to be who just wanted to learn more.


I have been so fortunate over the last year to find like minded partners to work with. Many of those partners came out to celebrate with us including Lauren Wenchel of Charm City Bride, Lori Hill of Lori Hill Event Productions, Martha Thomas of Baltimore Magazine, Mike and Kate Primm from the Green School Michael Harris and his fabulous truffles, Rachel Costello and Christine Cochrum of Apothecary Wellness Spa and our hostess, Jordan Faye Block.


What would a LoCoFlo party be without flowers? Event though it was 3 weeks past the hard frost here in Baltimore, one of our growers, Pam Pahl, had a sunny, protected warm patch that was still full of snapdragons. Even at the end of the season, these snaps were just beautiful.


It was great that my husband and  friends were able to come celebrate  with me as well. They all helped in various ways this year: volunteering at Flowermart, building the Coolbot, delivering flowers, making LoCoFlo t-shirts and on and on! Thank you! Of course, Bart and Marina were sorely missed-but I guess vacation in California is pretty fun too!



Don’t feel bad if you missed the party…we’re hoping to make it an annual event …so we’ll see you next year!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Flowers Uncut on TLC

jeff_lead.jpegphoto from blum floral design

I like TV. In fact, it can probably be said that I Love TV. I watch alot of shows …too many to list in fact. While I’ve see shows like “Say Yes to the Dress” and “Whose Wedding is it Anyway?”, I am not a huge fan of reality wedding shows. I get way more excited about Gardening by the Yard with everyone’s favorite Master Gardener Paul James.

That being said, there is a new show on TLC called Flowers Uncut. Flowers Uncut follows Jeff Leatham, floral designer/event planner extraordinaire as he creates some of the most lavish floral experiences you will ever see. This show has NOTHING to do with locally grown flowers or being sustainable or being Green…but it sure was fun to watch! Be sure to check it out Wednesdays at 10pm.

Flower Growers: A Year in Review

This morning I drove to Annapolis to a meeting of the Maryland Cut Flower Growers. Bob Wollam  of Wollam Gardens said it’s like old home week for them. The busy season is finally over and the growers have time to get together and visit with each other while talking about what worked and what didn’t work for them this past year.  I’m still the new face (and I’m not a grower)-but it’s always great to see our regular growers and great to meet some new ones as well.

For the growers, in terms of flower sales at markets this past year, it sounded like it was a mixed bag. Some established markets seemed steady with a slight increase in sales. Some markets seemed to be losing steam, making flowers sales fall. Other markets seem to be busy, but less people were spending money on flowers.  Sales to retail florists were universally down. One grower reported that he sells to 14 retail florists and that sales to all of them were down. One florist that he worked with regularly event went out of business. I can’t resist a plug here. Buying locally grown flowers matters-in a real world way. Not only are you getting a great, unique, seasonal product you are supporting local farmers and the local economy.

Now…back to the meeting…

While the growers seemed….concerned-they were also optimistic. Kathy York of Scarborough Farm and Suzanne Montie of Red Chimney Flower Farm  were in collusion about how they could get in on a Kordes rose order for next season.  Everyone was impressed with Bob and Andrea’s test crops this year including LoCoFlo!


Andrea Gagnon of Lynn Vale Farm was excited about the recent number of requests from brides for local seasonal flowers. She also gave a great demonstration on how to make holiday wreaths with local greens, local fruits and the this wreath making contraption.



I’m looking forward to the next meeting in January. On the agenda…seed saving, what’s new for 2010 and a presentation by your truly about the importance of internet marketing and social networking!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Real Weddings: Becky and John

Becky and John were married on a beautiful September afternoon. Becky carried a bouquet of white dahlias and scented geranium. This classic bouquet went perfectly with her dress.

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The bridesmaids bouquets were made of orange dahlias, orange, peach, and yellow zinnias and a sprinkling of scented geranium.



The table arrangements were made up of three vases: an Orangina bottle with colorful zinnias, a wine bottle full of green hydrangeas and a clear glass vase full of white zinnias, scented geranium and monkey balls.


The bride also chose a few of the white dahlias for her hair!


Congratulations to this happy couple!

Thanks to Peter Holden Photography for these great pictures. Thanks to Locust Point Flowers, Belvedere Farm and Bridge Farm Nursery for the flowers!