October 2016 Newsletter

Floral Trends - Volume 78

Flowers Last Longer Than…

An Ode to Fresh Flowers

By Casey Coleman Schwartz


Flowers last longer than the last meal you prepared! Enjoy them! Photo by Kit Wertz

I heard someone recently comment that they did not bother to buy fresh flowers because they die after a week.

I thought that was sad. I also thought that some flowers last 2 -3 weeks, so she should buy those.

The other day I was  cruising the grocery and seeing the great flower section and scooped up a bunch of sunflowers, knowing they would last about a week or more. In the last bit of summer, I knew they would be just the right touch for the dinner table.

Then, my thoughts turned to what to make for dinner as I had a friend visiting from New York City, for whom I had not cooked in five years. I scooted about the grocery coming up with something creative that would satisfy three adults and two of the younger set, but also had to consider how long it would take to cook this dinner.


Photo by Kit Wertz

Before settling in Los Angeles, I spent 12 years at sea with 5-star chefs preparing my meals…so I am not a fancy cook. With a late start preparing meals. I am more of a quick prep girl. But this time I thought I would make an effort. Two hours later, including shopping, prepping and cooking and then plating…our meal was ready to serve and it disappeared in a blink of an eye!

It made me think. It took me a mere five minutes to pick out flowers and 10 minutes to arrange them and they lasted a week! 

It took me 20 minutes to gather the dinner ingredients and one and a half hours to prepare the meal and my family devoured it in about 15 minutes. All that work and investment is gone …but my flower arrangement still looked awesome!

Here is our bottom line on the pleasure of fresh flowers: Buy the flowers and enjoy their lifetime with you and have 5-star chefs prepare meals for you. Bon fleurs and bon appetit!

Succulent Pumpkin Classes with Flower Duet in October & November

Flower Duet's Succulent Pumpkins for 2014

Flower Duet’s version of the lovely succulent pumpkin using a squat white pumpkin and a variety of Echeveria, Aeoniums and Crassula plants.

Flower Duet holds its annual Succulent Pumpkin class this Saturday at our studio in Torrance. Work with locally grown succulents and pods for this long-lasting design (up to four months!). All the succulents can be replanted and we tell you how. Attend the pre-workshop optional tour of the LA Flower Mart to learn about some top-notch wholesale succulent suppliers.

BONUS: We’ll also show you how to add fresh flowers to this design!

Sign up today and remember, when you sign up for three or more classes at one time, you’ll received a discount!

More information on our shopping site: Succulent Pumpkin Class

NOTE: If you miss this class, you can attend our Succulent Pumpkin Class at The Huntington Library in San Marino on November 5, 2016.

Thanksgiving Centerpieces

Large succulent pumpkin planters make wonderful Thanksgiving centerpieces. Designs by Flower Duet. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Detroit Flower Week – October 11-15, 2016


Last year, we wrote about the Detroit Flower House conceived by floral designer Lisa Waud of Pot + Box where florists from the United States and Canada came together to collaborate on a truly unique way of looking at flowers.

As a follow up to that amazing experience, Waud has created Detroit Flower Week, which will offer a plethora of workshops, discussions, installations and lectures that are all inspired by The Flower House.

From October 11-15, 2016, you can join a top team of floral designers to learn and connect in the spirit of #flowerhousedetroit through lectures, workshops, conversations and food!


Each day of Detroit Flower Week is packed full of floral design presentations by Top-Notch designers from around the United States and Canada. Here is Saturday’s schedule.

from flower house and detroit flower week founder, lisa waud: “during the installation and exhibition of flower house, there wasn’t much time to get to know all the extraordinary designers and volunteers because we were so busy filling the house with flowers! my goal with detroit flower week is to bring everyone together again, but with more time to inspire one another. i have always been moved by bruce mau’s incomplete manifesto of growth, and #39 in particular:

This incredible week will mostly like prove to provide invaluable content and design for both flower enthusiasts and floral designers. The week’s events will conclude with a dinner on Saturday, October 15, 2016 to  celebrate creativity and sustainability in flowers and food, set beneath what is sure to be a fantastic floral installation created by London designer Joe Massie.

Who is Presenting?


Detroit Flower Week Presenters for 2016

Ariella Chezar
Ashley Woodson Bailey
Christina Stembel
Debra Prinzing
Diane Szukovathy
Emily Katz
Emily Thompson
Franciose Weeks
Heather Saunders
Heidi Berkman
Heidi Joynt
Jill Rizzo
Joe Massie
Julia Bell
Lewis Miller
Lisa Waud
Lisa Ziegler
Michael Genovese
Molly Kobelt

You should attend the Flower Week if: You love flower gardening and farming or you are a floral designer at any level or you are just a complete floral enthusiast!

Field to Vase Dinner at Sunset Magazine’s New Test Gardens on October 16, 2016.


Attend an Exclusive Dinner at Cornerstone Sonoma on October 16, 2016

Be among the first to experience the new home of Sunset Magazine’s test garden at Cornerstone Sonoma. Field to Vase Dinner guests are in for a treat, as Sunset garden editor Johanna Silver will play host to the special few in attendance on October 16, 2016 from 5 to 8 p.m.

Located in California’s beautiful Wine Country, Cornerstone Sonoma is home to many wonderful and innovative landscape designs celebrating the connection between art, architecture and nature.

Purchase tickets HERE and find more information on American Grown Flowers HERE.

CaliFlora 2016 – November 5 & 6


The Los Angeles Flower Market

754 S. Wall Street, Los Angeles

Saturday, November 5th and Sunday, November 6th

Schedule of events, CSFA membership application and more information on becoming a California Certified Florist: CaliFlora 2016 Program

Register for this amazing event: CaliFlora Registration Form

Two floral design competitions will be held during CaliFlora on Sunday, November 6 at The Los Angeles Flower Market (754 Wall Street, Los Angeles, CA 90014). Both the Student Design Competition and Top Ten Design Competition will take place in the morning. Please call the CSFA office for more information at 916-448-5266.


7:00 am – 7:45 am: Student Pre-Qualifying
8:00 am: Student Design Competition Begins

This competition is designed for students of floral design, ornamental horticulture or environmental design curriculums in California high schools, colleges or universities.


9:00 am – 9:45 am: Top Ten Pre-Qualifying
10:00 am: Top Ten Design Competition Begins

This prestigious competition features California’s most creative floral designers. Each designer will complete a themed designer’s choice and surprise package arrangement. Designers with the ten highest total points will be named the Top Ten of California. The highest scorer will win the coveted Top Ten Award and will represent CSFA in the SAF Sylvia Cup Competition at the 2017 Society of American Florists’ (SAF) convention.

Autry Museum California Native Plant Inspired Floral Workshop For Members


Flower Duet’s CA Native inspired design for the Autry Museum’s Member workshop on November 20, 2016. Photo by Kit Wertz.

About the Event

Inspired by the Autry’s California Continued Garden, the floral design team of Flower Duet will provide guidance as you create a stunning arrangement to add to your Thanksgiving table, including succulents and native species. Enjoy breakfast pastries, coffee, and mimosas!

Learn more: The Autry Museum


For Members of The Autry Museum, a special floral workshop!

Autry membership supports dynamic exhibitions, thought-provoking lectures, educational programming, conservation efforts, and so much more. Take advantage of all that the Autry has to offer and know that your membership provides vital financial support for the museum.

Join or Renew

Become an Autry member to enjoy a full year of exhibitions, family programs, films, music, theatre, and more. Autry members also enjoy invitations to exclusive members-only events, discounts at the Autry Store and Crossroads West Cafe, and a variety of additional benefits associated with each level. To learn more about membership, please contact the Membership Department at 323.495.4326, or memberinfo@theautry.org.

If you are an Autry member, you can join the class with Flower Duet on Sunday, November 20, 10:00 a.m.–Noon

  • Where: The Autry in Griffith Park
  • Admission:  Space Is Limited / $15 Registration Fee, Reservations Will Be Available Beginning in Late September
  • RSVP/Reservations:  Reservations Required and available to Autry Museum Members Only. To RSVP, go to TheAutry.org or call 323.495.4380.

Where to Buy California Native Plants near Los Angeles

By Kit Wertz


Entrance to the nursery at Theodore Payne in Sun Valley. Photo by Kit Wertz.

Many local nurseries including Armstrong Garden Centers are offering California Native Plants for landscapers who want to create a non-invasive and drought tolerant garden. But if you would like to choose from a very extensive selection and learn a lot more about how to create such a garden, it’s best to drive to Sun Valley and see all what the Theodore Payne Foundation Nursery has to offer!

Last week, I drove up past downtown and up the 5 freeway just past Burbank to the sleepy foothills of Sun Valley and while a few field trips where going on around me with school children grinding acorns, I had a wonderful time looking at all the plants I could choose from to landscape my front yard and was delighted to see more than a few that work well in floral designs including some Wax Myrtle, Rush (horsetail) and Maidenhair Fern! I was so enamored that I became a member! All members receive:

  • Complimentary subscription to Poppy Print newsletter
  • Complimentary subscription to Native News e-newsletter
  • 10% discount on plants, seeds, and clothes
  • 15% discount on plants during spring and fall sales
  • Discount on classes of up to 25%
  • Discount on Garden Tour tickets

There are a ton of classes and events including topics such as “The Essential Edible Garden” and “Irrigation Basics.”


Each plant in the nursery has an extensive information sheet. Photo by Kit Wertz.


Patrons walk in the nursery and a school field trip was going on while Kit was walking around. Photo by Kit Wertz.


Patrons can use large wagons to collect the plants and then receive a ticket to pay for the plants inside the office. Photo by Kit Wertz.


Inside the gift shop of the Theodore Payne Foundation. Photo by Kit Wertz.


Here is just one section of the large nursery offerings at the Theodore Payne Foundation in Sun Valley. Photo by Kit Wertz.

What California Natives work Well in Floral Design?

  • Any hardy succulent would work well in a floral design from aloes to Dudleyas.
  • Ferns
  • Manzanitas, Bay Laurels and Myrtles
  • Yarrow
  • Grasses
  • Bush Anemone
  • Willows
  • Snowberry

Sally Jacobs Watercolors

Sally Jacobs Watercolor - TAG Gallery

Sally Jacobs Watercolor – TAG Gallery

In Saturday’s Los Angeles Times, Lisa Boone wrote about a great art exhibit she called “farm-to-canvas” at the TAG Gallery featuring realistic watercolors by Sally Jacobs. These lovely paintings include flowers and plants and are truly amazing. Be sure to see it by October 22nd!

September 27 – October 22
Artists Talk:  Saturday, October 8, 3 pm

TAG Gallery Information:

Tues. – Sat.,  11 a.m. – 5 p.m.  

2525 Michigan Ave., D3,
Santa Monica, CA 90404

310. 829.9556


Floral Book Review: Mary Vaux Walcott: A Selection of Her Wildflowers of North America


Mary Vaux Walcott: A Selection of Her Wildflowers of North America – Signed Copy offered by The Smithsonian

Last summer, Kit saw the book by Mary Vaux Walcott: A Selection of Her Wildflowers of North America, at the Smithsonian’s National Gallery of Art’s gift shop and thought it was a pretty neat gift within itself. Each page can be removed and framed as a piece of artwork.

More than a collection of exquisite wildflower watercolors by noted botanical artist Mary Vaux Walcott, this beautiful book has been bound in a manner that makes it easy to remove 119 of these splendid floral portraits and frame them. This new compilation, Mary Vaux Walcott: A Selection of Her Wildflowers of North America – Signed Copy, includes a bookplate signed by Smithsonian Historian Pamela Henson. Printed in the U.S.A.  Softcover, 256 pages on archival paper; 119 full-color plates with Walcott’s botanical descriptions on the back, and an index of flowers by color. 11″ x 14″.

Museum Provenance

Originally painted and published in the 1920’s (when the artist’s husband was Secretary of the Smithsonian), a signed, five-volume folio edition resides in our Smithsonian Institution Libraries.