Christmas Flower Ideas

Christmas is my favorite season.  I love the decorations, the lights, the music, the smell. As soon as the Thanksgiving turkey is made into leftovers I am pulling out our Christmas decorations and hopefully inspiring the same love of the Christmas season in my 4 year old daughter. Since we don’t have a fireplace she thinks Santa comes to the door and says “ding dong” to bring her presents!

Fresh flowers and plants make the holidays even brighter. Oregon is blessed to have a wide variety of fresh holiday greenery that bring the wonderful smell of Christmas to life. These days we meet requests for holiday flowers for everything from traditional centerpieces to fun and modern arrangements. Don’t hesitate to try something different this year! Here’s a little inspiration to get you started…

modern christmas centerpiece with tropical flowerschristmas amaryllis flowerscontemporary christmas flower arrangementchristmas centerpiece delivered eugene, orwinter flower arrangementtropical christmas flowers

Our Renewed Display and Sales Floor

Last week, Julianne spent her days revamping our sales floor, and now that it looks fantastic, I thought I’d give you a peak!

Below is the front window display as you walk up to the store.

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Our selection of gorgeous, flower-themed hand-bags.

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Our new, seaside-themed corner, with wonderful gift items.

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Our “Go Green” lucky bamboo section! Love the bamboo and bark combination!

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Our small cooler is ready for fall!

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The Bras for a Cure section! That’s coming up next month, by the way, so click on the link and find out what you need to do to enter or contribute.

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A Recap of 2013

2014 has arrived, and with it the freshness of new beginnings, hopes for a better year, and new years resolutions! While it is exciting to look forward to a new year imagining the adventures it will hold and planning a few of those yourself, this is also a great time to look back at the year we left and  learn from or laugh at it’s  experiences, and then go forward.

I’d like to do a recap of 2013 for Dandelions. So much happened last year that we’d like to remember it’ll be good to have it all in one place,  so here goes:

January:

The year starts off cold and foggy (as is usually the case in Oregon), but Bethany – Shirley’s granddaughter visiting from Minnesota – joins the design team and brightens the day:

Bethany

 

 

 

 

February:

This Valentine’s we start carrying Moonstruck Chocolate  – yum! But it’s also a sad time for us. Rosie a designer who’s worked here for 10 years will be moving to California. This is her last Valentine’s with us.

moonstruck

Rosie 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March:

A much longed-for, sunny day, and the Dande-girls step outside to briefly bask in the warming rays.

warm day

 

 

 

 

 

April:

It’s time for the Olympic Track and Field Trials, and we do the bouquets given to the winners. Here’s Shirley busy at work on some of those bouquets.

track meet

 

 

 

 

 

 

May:

A Busy month – In the beginning of the month we do a  photo-shoot for the Register Guard Dash about brunch flower ideas for Mother’s Day. One is a contemporary table, and the other traditional.

dash

traditional

Debra Ann Wilson Eugene's Favorite Mom

We present the winner of our Mothers Day contest Eugene’s Favorite Mom Debra Ann Wilson with her well-won award.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

make it for mom

The day before Mothers Day is busy with our Make it for Mom event for kids.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June:

This is graduation month, and we’re busy making and delivering beautiful flowers for the various graduations all around the UO campus.

Graduation flowers for UO

For their company event, Levi Strauss does a floral design class with us. They’re naturals!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

July:

We get a visit from Teleflora’s Chairman, Tom Butler, and his wife Becky.

Teleflora Chairman Tom Butler and wife Becky

 

 

 

 

 

September:

What an amazing month! Our boss and owner of Dandelions – Shirley Lyons – is installed as President of the Society of American Florists. The first woman in the association’s 129 years, and the first Oregonian! We are so proud!

Shirley

Betty Jo Phillips Eugene's Extraordinary Grandparent 2013

We award Betty Jo Phillips her prize for winning our Eugene’s Extraordinary Grandparent 2013 contest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This month we also start carrying a fabulous new product – Beaded Flowers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

October:

Another busy month! This Boss’s Day, we award Rich Spindler of DataLogic ADC (in the yellow shirt) with Eugene’s Best Boss 2013 award.

Best Boss 2013 Rich Spindler of Datalogic ADC (in yellow shirt)

We held our second annual Bras for a Cure event and raised $2950 going to the Willamette Valley Cancer Institute Foundation for the fight against breast cancer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

At the end of the month, the Dande-girls… and our customers get dressed up for Halloween!

Halloween

 

 

 

 

 

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November:

This month Shirley celebrates her 60th birthday!

Shirley turns 60

Boys and Girls Club Fundraiser

We do some beautiful tablescapes for the Boys and Girls Club fundraiser.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December:

This month starts off with a record-setting snowfall that stays with us for a couple of weeks.

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We do a book-signing event for Bob Welch’s new children’s book Keyboard Kitten.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Colt turns 1!!!

At the end of the month, our very adorable Colt celebrates his first birthday!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now we’re ready for 2014, and it’s adventures!!

Christmas Colors Inspire Me

I love the holiday season, but this year is especially spectacular. Not only did it snow this weekend, but the temperature in Eugene has stayed cold enough to keep it looking like a winter wonderland! A week into December, and with the lovely evergreens surrounding Eugene laden with the white, fluffy precipitation; the streets and rooftops snow-covered, the season has announced itself: Christmas is here!Dandelions Flowers & Gifts

This year, along with my usual reasons for loving the season – putting a tree up and dressing it up for the season; the festive decorations and lights around town; holiday shopping and wrapping (or bagging) gifts; anticipating fun family get-togethers; watching people go by all bundled up against the cold; Christmas music – I get to add a couple of  new ones to my list: the scrunch of footsteps in the snow; snow blowing off branches and swirling in the breeze against a blue winter sky. But I always come back to an old favorite: the red, white and green flowers we work with in the store. When the snow-tinted pine cones and Christmas greenery come out at work, it’s easy to get inspired, so I thought I’d give you a glimpse of some red, white and green floral inspiration at Dandelions:

Green and white kale adds fantastic texture to any arrangement you add it to.green and white kale

The big, beautiful and exotic blooms of cymbidium orchids with their deep red throats are a great attention-grabber.green cymbidium orchids

Deep red ranunculus, with its lovely, ruffly petals.deep red ranunculus

I never get tired of the wild allure of bells of Ireland. Their height is perfect for a showy, seasonal design.green bells of ireland

Red dogwood is also great for height in an arrangement. It’s woodsy red tint is perfect for the season.red dogwood branches

Red poinsettias are a Christmas icon! Their bold beauty add festivity to anyone’s holiday decor. red poinsettia

Exotic, bright red anthuriums, if you’re looking for something different, and dramatic!red antherium

Wintery-white fuji mums! white fuji mums

White poinsettias! Another winter holiday beauty!white poinsettias

I love the elegance that white dendrobium orchids bring to an arrangement.White dendrobium orchids

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!snow dec 10

Using Flowers in Local Science Classrooms

We received a great thank-you note from local Willamette High School teacher, David Novak, who has been using flowers from Dandelions to teach the students in his botany science class about the anatomy of flowers.  We love hearing that our customers enjoy our flowers, and we love finding out about the different ways they are used. It’s great to hear how students are getting exposed to flowers in this educational way, and learning to appreciate even more this incredible part of nature.

Here’s some of what David wrote to us:

The flowers I get from you, even those that are too "ripe to sell",
the are perfect for us and add greatly to our learning of the
fundamental tissues and organs of plants and are great motivators for
learning! Nothing beats getting actual flowers into students hands when
learning about all the structures!!

What do I do with them??  I have included some shots to help you
understand.  In particular,
I have students draw them, both as the flowers come to us and after we
bisect them lengthwise.  
We examine the parts using microscopes to view all the parts (ovary,
ovules, pistils, etc.) which are often
hard to see with the unaided eye.  We answer questions about  the
flowers (e.g., compare the length of the pistil in one 
flower to another and suggest reasons for the different in length).
There are also a few experiments we like to try with the flowers, if we
get enough.

The mums we used this week and alstroemeria were perfect. THANKS for
all your effort and generosity!!

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Dandelions’ Poinsettia Project

A year ago – December 2011 – Roseann, one of our designers, put a broken poinsettia stem into a bud-vase of water thinking it would give her a few days of pleasure before it died. Over a year later, surprising us all, this stem has survived…the leaves have faded in color, but it’s still alive! 

So this year Roseann has a new poinsettia stem in a bud vase, next to the old one, and we’ll see how long this one lasts!!

How are the poinsettias you bought this holiday doing? Hopefully, great!! Here’s how you can care for them and get them to re-bloom next season:

1. Keep caring for them as you have been during the holiday (Keeping them away from the cold, in warm rooms, and making sure they get enough water and lots of light.) If the leaves have already shriveled or fallen off, start watering your plant less.

New poinsettia bract2. In March (around the 17th – St. Patrick’s Day), when the bracts (colored leaves) fade, cut the stems back to 8 inches above the soil line.

3. Water your plant less than you’ve been watering it, allowing it to dry out more.

4. Lightly fertilize your plant with a balanced all-purpose plant food every 3-4 weeks.

5. When it warms up outside, place the plant outdoors – first in indirect sunlight, and then direct sunlight. Avoid temperatures under 50 degrees throughout the summer. When the new growth appears, water your plant more frequently.

6. In early July, around the 4th, cut back the new growth on the stems, and re-pot  the plant, if it needs it.

7. In early September, when fall temperatures begin to drop, move your poinsettia plant back inside, but make sure it gets 6 or more hours of direct light.

8. October 1st to December 1st, keep your plant in complete darkness for 14 hours, giving it 10 hours of natural light daily. This will set the buds and cause the bracts to color. Any exposure to light during the dark hours will delay blooming.

9. In  early December, stop fertilizing your poinsettia and start caring for it they way you did during the holiday.

Old and new poinsettiaGood luck on your poinsettia project. Let us know how your plant does. We’ll definitely keep you posted on Roseann’s poinsettia cuttings.

Bob Welch Book Signing Event at Dandelions

Bob WelchLast month I wrote about local author Bob Welch‘s recently published books “Cascade Summer: My Adventure on Oregon’s Pacific Crest Trail” and “52 Little Lessons from It’s a Wonderful Life” that we have for sale here in our store. I mentioned then that Dandelions would be hosting a book-signing for Mr. Welch this month. Well, we have a date:

When:     Tuesday, December 18th, from 3:30 pm to 5:30 pm.

Where:   Dandelions Flowers and Gifts at 1710 Chambers St. Eugene, OR, 97402

Join us here at Dandelions at as we host this exciting event, and take advantage of the opportunity to meet Bob Welch. Not only will these autographed books be great to pick up for yourself, but they’ll also make a wonderful present during this holiday gift-giving season.

Also, all Dandelions merchandise will be 20% off during the book-signing.

Be sure not to miss this opportunity!!