Simple Floral arrangement

Come have fun with the...

Floral Design

American Rhododendron Society
Southwest Oregon Chapter

Watch for the
March 2018 Chapter meeting for the
"Simply Beautiful Floral Designs" presentation!

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Pink line
              mass

Be sure to check the show schedule to determine what design class you would like to try out, any limitations (such as size), and how to make a space reservation for your design!
Why include floral design in a show? Including floral design creates an opportunity for the public to see appreciate just how beautiful rhododendrons can be.  Few commercial florists are able to incorporate rhodos in their creations because the fragile flowers are difficult to ship.  Thus many people may not have seen them used in a floral design.

Just like the horticulture side of the show, floral arrangements have standards by which they can be judged. There are standard design elements and principles, which can be applied to any form of art. Judges go through stringent training and judging practice just like the horticulture process.  There is a scale of points that refer to conformance to the schedule, elements and principles, selection and organization, interpretation, and superiority. Maximum points = 100.

There are different versions of design principles and elements.  One of the most complete is from the National Garden Club, Inc. judging handbook which outlines design principles as: balance, contrast, dominance, proportion, rhythm, and scale. Elements are described as: color, form, light, line, pattern, size, space, and texture. 
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              design

Click here to learn how to create line mass and line floral arrangements using rhododendrons.
Azaleas in a green metal water bottle Does floral arranging take a lot of time?
Not necessarily.  With a little practice, a floral design (like those shown on this page) can be created in 30 seconds or less. It may actually take longer to collect and prepare the design materials than it is to actually do the design.

There are several design patterns such as line, line mass, mass, etc. that can be created very quickly.  As you can imagine there are also ones that are very involved and difficult.  A typical show schedule might describe a floral entry as: 

Class I - Purple Haze.  Creative design featuring purple rhododendrons and companion plant leaves. Should include a rock and wood. Size is limited to 30-inch square. There is no limit to height. Space is limited. Please make your reservations for this class by X date by calling X.  
Want to support the show and have flowers to spare? Designers may need some extra flowers! Some need to get flowers from other growers for their designs, and are not required to grow all of the flowers they use. If you want to help encourage the design side of the house -- figure how folks can share their flowers!
Want more information?  Check these floral links and references

Add recommended books and links will be added here

White azaleas in a blue metal water bottle

Exercise your brain with floral arranging???

Well yes. Some people like to play number games, complete crossword puzzles, and play other creative brain games.  Planning and executing a floral arrangement can be as challenging and stimulating as any of those games.  The process challenges how we think, imagine, envision, and problem solve (like how to keep the design from tipping over!).

Floral design competitions provide a way to highlight the flowers and provide an outlet for creativity and problem solving. Some people use floral arranging as a mental and creative challenge, while others may use it as a way to meditate.  Even samurai warriors used floral arranging as a way to relax and balance their lives.

A floral design might help someone see beauty in these plants that they have never seen before. Besides that,  the competition of floral arranging is fun and helps round out a show.  Floral designs have also been shown to help boost sales and increase interest in plant shows. 
References:
Of Samurai, Stress, and Flower Arranging
 
Japanese Samurai FLower Arranging on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=woQPt2gTMDI

National Geographic "Way of the Warrior" http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/features/world/asia/japan/samurai-text/3

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