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Mornings with Mayesh: March 2019

Mornings with Mayesh: March 2019

For March’s Mornings with Mayesh, Yvonne, Shelley & Dave answer your burning questions …. related to flowers, of course. Some topics that are covered in this episode are anemones, King protea, garlands, dusty miller, how to handle brides that want to provide their own flowers, and more.
Mark your calendars for April 2nd for our next show with special guest, Alison Ellis of Real Flower Business answering your flower pricing questions.
I hope you can join us and keep on sending in your floral questions!

Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:












  • Jen & Jesse: Trends for the new year




      • Pampas grass ceremony circles, bleached & preserved fillers & foliages, earth tone dyed flowers.    


      • Dried trends, boho weddings, Joshua tree look, seeing a lot more color, tropical


    • Tropical theme
    • Yazmine Cortez, 1/15, FB: What’s a good dusty blush rose??




          There are quite a few varieties in varying gradients of blush to light pink. Some of my faves In standard roses are: Esther, Nena, Jessika, Faith, Pink Mondial & Sweet Akito,  In garden roses it’s Keira, Pink O’hara, Charity, Tsumugi & Wedding Spirit, and In spray roses Star blush, Sweet Sensation & Royal Porcellina.


      • Shelley: I really love Madre la Perla and Sweet Escimo 


    • Sharlet Driggs, 1/15, FB: Which months will be best for anemones?




      • Anemones are grown all over the world and are readily available most of the year with the exception of July & August when production dips very low. A great sub is micro gerberas. 


    • Penny Stone, 1/15, FB: White king protea. Fabulous blooms!! Terribly expensive wholesale! Alternative??




        • There is nothing on earth as cool as a white king protea and subbing for these is difficult. When in season, white kale makes a great sub… but it isn’t available year round either. We are starting to import many bleached flowers and foliages from Holland and one of these might make a great impression as an alternative. Some of the bleached white products offered now are ferns, palm leaves, poppy pods, amaranthus & fillers like eryngium, gyp, misty & riceflower.


      • From Shelley: you could always use a queen protea and tint it white with design master spray or any of the white proteas like owl or white mink or white knight. The other option is to use a silk or artificial stem. Sometimes these can be just as expensive but if you have to have it..especially when they are out of season..this is a good choice.  


    • Jill Mohn, 1/15, FB: I have a bride this summer looking at a showy piece using Monstera leaves but they are expensive. Can you suggest an alternative?




      • Large aralia leaf is inexpensive but much smaller in size. Birds of Paradise leaves have a taller linear look. Hala leaf is another tall linear foliage. We import these greens from places like Costa Rica & Hawaii. So, unless you have a secret local source for Monstera leaves, there are lots of freight costs involved in shipping. Another option would be to invest in artificial Monstera leaves that can be reused. 


    • Kirsten Gordon, 1/16, Email: A question I would like to talk about is what flowers that can be obtained in America are good choices for spring summer and fall weddings and if we chose two or three focus flowers how we would mix these with more commonly known flowers like hydrangeas or roses. In other words, how do we best play up the stars of each season?




      • Talk to us, we’re always excited to tell you what’s hot in our cooler! There are so many options its mind boggling and impossible to list everything here… the best advice is to check out our 12-month flower availability list and try to plan around what we have listed. My disclaimer is always to double check with your sales rep closer to your event in case there are any problems with the production of a particular item.  


  • Kirsten Gordon, 1/16, Email: Another question I would like to hear about is for you to talk about the different types of garlands that you make and different options. I have a lot of brides asking about using greenery because they either want that look or they perceive that it is cheaper than using flowers. Need to go past the basic eucalyptus.




    • Garlands are a fantastic way to make a statement for any event BUT they are extremely labor intensive and even with the most frugal selection of foliage are still not “cheap”. To cut cost, start with something big & bulky yet affordable like lemon leaf or silver dollar euc. You can add bits of textural interest later with more expensive greens.  I can tell you from experience that hand wiring garlands can be a lesson in humility. If they aren’t fabricated correctly they will fail and gap in sections. They are extremely difficult to repair at a moment’s notice during installation. Having Mayesh manufacture you garlands by our experienced garland machine operators will provide a super strong, reliable base.  


  • Monica, 1/16, email: How is the floral industry evolving and working to keep up with the standards of improved environmental and health impact through our products? (Supplies and cut flowers). In other words, what changes are being made to reduce the health risks of working with commercially grown/cut flowers and the supplies like foam, etc?




      • There have been many positive strides in the global floral community over the past 30 years to improve agricultural sustainability. At Mayesh we do our part by purchasing from Veriflora, Florverde & Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. These farms follow strict guidelines for sustainable agriculture production. Some of these practices include biological pest controls, composting, water reclamation, safe storage and handling of agricultural chemicals, proper land management that supports healthy regional habitat. Sustainability also ensures growers adhere to fair labor practices for their employees providing better wages, a safer workplace, and resources like medical and daycare.


    • I try to teach my floral design students to use chicken wire instead of floral foam as much as possible. I am a big advocate of going green in this industry and having as small a carbon footprint as possible. Composting, using recyclable containers and supplies are ways that you can help. Always recycle plastic and cardboard.




    • Jeanette: What if any are your thoughts on Oasis solution 360, where no cutting the stems when processing is directed?




      • From Shelley: We use this here at our location and it works very well. We have been using it for over a year and have not had any issues with product in general. There are a few flowers that we still cut just to be on the safe side because they are delicate ( astilbe for example) But over all we love it. It’s also great because we can re-use the water several times and it can also be reactivated.   


    • Is Chocolate cosmos edible?




      • As good as chocolate cosmos smell, it is still not advisable to eat them. According to Gardeners World magazine, they have no measurable toxicity. However, most commercial flower farms use some form of pesticide during production, SO, If it is not USDA certified for human consumption… please don’t eat them! We do carry USDA certified organic edible flowers, please contact a Mayesh rep for their availability. 


    • Kelley: I would love to know the typical lifespan on Dusty Miller and how to keep it looking great in bouquets and arrangements. I feel like mine gets droopy so quickly and its very finicky.




      • In Phoenix, we import our Dusty miller from an Ecuadorian grower almost all year round. It has a remarkably long vase life, up to a week or more. Of course, these commercially grown varieties are selected for their strong traits and last longer than if they are foraged from your garden. In my experience, the lacier leaf varieties tend to be a little more fragile than rounded leaf varieties. When hydrating dusty miller, make sure to avoid submerging their short stems too deep or dripping water on the tops of the leaves. Their fuzzy surface tends to hold moisture that can activate botrytis spores on the leaves and cause bacteria to form in the water quickly. Using the recommended dose of flower food, recutting stems & changing the water frequently ensures they stay hydrated and firmed up. 


  • Winnie, 1/16, email: I would like to know how do you keep Dusty Miller fresh and how do you revive it and make sure it looks good the day of the wedding. Appreciate the help.




    • Dusty miller has tiny little hairy filaments all over the stems and leaves called trichomes. These hairs act as a deterrent for frost damage, insects attack and lessen dehydration from transpiration. But their fur coats can become breeding grounds for stem clogging bacteria while submerged during the hydration process. Try gently scraping these off of the part of the stems that will be submerged. Hydrate them in a shallow level of fresh solution instead of a deep plunge. Recut stems and replace the solution every day or two.




  • Linda Sims, 1/15, FB: How do you handle Brides who say they have their own materials for their flowers but wants you to design them?




      • From Shelley: Well it depends on what they are talking about. A few blooms from their garden? That may be sentimental to them but address the fact that they may wilt. They have their own containers? Make sure they are waterproof and you are contractually, clearly not responsible for them.


    • If they have all of their own flowers ( why aren’t they getting the flowers from you btw?) their best friends dad’s in the wholesale business, yada yada…charge a substantial design fee and charge for everything you do including delivery and installation, mileage, van, rentals, extra designers or gas etc..You are not doing them a favor…it’s your business and you don’t want to pay for their wedding.




– Hi everyone, welcome to our March 19 Mornings with Mayesh show. I am Yvonne Ashton, the director of marketing here at Mayesh and I am here today with Shelley Anders and Dave Tagge to answer your flower questions. Love doing this show, I get to meet people as I travel and just meet everyone that does watch the show. So I just wanted to thank you. Gonna give everyone a couple of minutes to come on in. And just say hello and where you’re from. That would be great, hi guys and hi Penny. Penny is one of our viewers that joins us pretty much every single time so we appreciate people like Penny, thank you. Good morning, Tanya, while people are coming in and saying good morning I just wanted to mention that we have Desi in our control room. Good morning Desi, she’s gonna be posting our links for us and just kind of helping us stay all organized. And hopefully this show goes smoothly. Speaking of, I do wanna bring up that it is raining today here in sunny South Florida and my electricity has been flickering. It’s done it three times, it hasn’t officially gone out so if the show does happen to go down, I promise I will be on as soon as the electricity goes back. But because the account is through me, there is a possibility that the whole show will stop. So if that happens I promise we will be back on as quickly as my electricity goes back on, which’ll hopefully be immediately. Okay so that’s out of the way. So keep on saying good morning, hi Herman. Good morning Jamie from Portland, Leah from Memphis, good morning guys. I have another Jamie from, hold on it just moved, Adrian, Michigan and we have Jennifer Bleakley, she’s saying good morning Yvonne and crew. Again she’s one of our lovely people that is with us every single Mornings with Mayesh. Thank you so much, so keep on, Lucy from the UK, hey Lucy! I love it when people are coming in and watching from all different parts of the world. That’s just amazing to me, love social media because of that. So as we are going through the show if you have any questions while we’re talking, we will try our best to answer them. You go ahead and post them in the comments below and also while we’re at it if you can, while we’re watching, just on our Facebook page say that you wanna be notified anytime we go live, that would be awesome as well. I think there’s a little bell, or something you can say I wanna be notified. And that way you’ll never miss a show when we go live if you’re on Facebook. Alright guys, I also wanted to let you know that today’s show is brought to you by our Mayesh Design Star Flower Workshop Tour, yay! We have three dates left for 2019. We have a date coming up in May, May 20 and 21, after Mother’s Day. It’s an all levels class in Nashville. We’ll be hitting up Austin in August with the masterclass. And in November we will be finishing up in Columbus, Ohio with an all levels class. I do wanna make mention that my website is on word press and it recently had a big change on the back end of things and it kinda broke a few things. One of those things is being our ticket sales. So you might go on and try and buy a ticket and it is broken right now, I am working on getting that fixed hopefully in the next couple of days. But I have to rely on outside resources to get that done. I am very very sorry that this is happening. It’s very frustrating and as soon as it is fixed and ready to go I will definitely let you guys know. I’ll let the world know, I promise. But we will share the link so that way you can check that out. We have Jennifer from Chicago, good morning. Penny said she shared it, thank you Penny for sharing our video, love it. I also wanted to talk quickly about Quito. We had a workshop there, not last week but the week before my team was there, Shelley came with us, we had Holly, Sue, and Veronica too, amazing designers who did a workshop. We did a farm tour and we also went to old town Quito and we played tourists for a little bit. But anyhow it was truly magical. I knew it would be, right, how could it not be. But honestly so many things could have gone wrong because we were importing a lot of things into Ecuador for the show, a lot of our supplies and some flowers from Holland. We obviously had beautiful roses and summer flowers from the Ecuadorian area. But it just turned out to be magical. The people were amazing, the Hacienda Cusin, if you just wanna vacation, Hacienda Cusin is freaking amazing, the food was awesome, the rooms are so cute, we had fireplaces. They’re not fancy rooms by any means. But they’re comfortable and cozy and just the people and the atmosphere is just to die for so check them out. Even if you don’t wanna come with me at a workshop. That’s okay, but definitely check out Hacienda Cusin. And wait until you see the images that I get from Nicole. We posted some for Instagram, but I’m a big believer in the pros. So we brought Nicole Cleary to take photos. We brought Logan from Tailwind Visuals to do the story telling video piece of it. So when those things come out, you guys are gonna die, gonna absolutely die. So anyhow, I’m bringing this up because it did sell out and I think we’re gonna continue to do this. We have two more years we’re already starting to plan right now, so hopefully in the next little bit I will have more details for 2020. Can you believe we’re talking about 2020? It’s going to be, I think, a very popular destination and I’m pretty sure that it’ll sell out very very quickly. Not to mention many of the people that went to Quito want to do this next trip with us. And they definitely have the inside scoop ’cause they got to hang out with me and my team for a whole entire week. We definitely had a lot of bonding and talking about the next trip that we’re going to be planning. So if you wanna go, you will need to be on a wait list ’cause we are gonna send out the official details to our students, our past students and then we’ll send it out to the wait list. And then I will send it out to the world. Again we’ll probably only have like 20 to 24 spots. And you don’t wanna miss it ’cause it will be amazing if you’re able to go. Penny says I’m doing another show at a Hacienda here. Oh very cool, yep so fun, I love it. Okay also I wanna make sure that you mark your guys’ calendars for our next shows. So April 2nd, I have my special guest Alison Ellis. She’s gonna be on with me talking about pricing. She has a bunch of questions from her last live price talk that she did which was really cool. So she’s gonna talk about those questions that she didn’t get to and then answer your guys’ questions as well. So I’ll send something out specifically for her to get your guys’ questions. But if you guys do have questions in the comments, maybe just write Alison so that way I know you want her to answer those questions, cool? Alright and then also mark your calendars for April 16th, that will be our regular scheduled show with Dave and Shelley. Alright guys, so let me bring on Dave and Shelley. And we will get started, hi Dave, hi Shelley.

– Good morning Yvonne, how are you?

– I am good, thank you, I’m good because my electricity’s still on so that makes me happy. Yes and Shelley I couldn’t hear you just that second. Nope I can’t hear you, I know! Wait, for some reason, I don’t know. We have issues with Shelley’s things. Nope, I can’t hear you, so maybe, sorry guys, maybe do a refresh, I don’t know. I’m not sure what to do about this. We always have technical difficulties. Alright so she’s gonna figure that out. While Shelley is figuring that out, guys, we are going to have Dave show you some pretty flowers. So Dave what did you bring today to show us?

– Yeah I brought a few things. Pieris is just starting in Oregon and consequently it’s also happening in Holland. So this is the Dutch, if I can get it out of the bucket here. And it’s looking pretty amazing right now.

– Can you hear me, okay.

– Oh hey Shelley.

– Hi, sorry.

– We couldn’t hear you yet. No it’s all good, so this is the Dutch Pieris. It’s in gorgeous, full blooms. Oregon is, like I just said, just starting so we got a little bit of pink in this week. And that is gonna be hot right now. So grab it while it’s here.

– Yeah people go crazy over the pieris when it starts.

– So pretty.

– Yeah, it’s too bad it’s not available year round. Here’s an oddity that we’re getting from South America. This is Chilean grown snow berry and it is gorgeous right now.

– Wow that’s beautiful.

– So thank you South America for growing some of this novelty stuff for us. We’re gonna talk about anemones during the show today, but these caught my eye this morning. These are some doubles that are California grown and they’re just amazing, all those petals in there.

– Those are so cool, I don’t think I’ve ever seen double anemones.

– Those are from our local guy here near Carlsbad.

– Very cool.

– Well thank you Shelley.

– We decided to share.

– I like to know the origin of my stuff, too which is cool, here’s some Japanese astilbe and this is died and I am told that they actually inject the die into the soil and that the plant takes the die through the roots. For whatever reason it does not die the foliage, just the bloom heads but isn’t that a cool navy blue color?

– Yeah.

– Very cool.

– So many died flowers now and you know, a few years ago I was so not into them and it’s kinda hard to not fall in love with this little trend that’s going on.

– They’re fun.

– Last but not least, tulips, it’s spring. The Dutch grow a whole bunch of really cool stuff. This one has been in our cooler the last few weeks and although it is extremely pricey, it’s moving very well, this is called Leo.

– So cool.

– It’s a fringe, but it’s a fringe on steroids. I don’t know if you can actually see how crazy cool that is.

– They look like flames.

– Yeah, they do exactly look like flames. They’re just so vibrant and pretty. So many tulips right now guys. They’re popping in Holland so get ’em while they’re hot. That’s all I got today.

– Thanks Dave.

– So pretty, well it is spring and it’s daffodil season, so one of my favorite times of the year so I’ve got some daffodils to show you guys. This is a very beautiful variety, if you can see that, it has a white with the pink center. Really pretty novelty daffodil, great for wedding work. I’m sorry, I think this is, I forgot the name of it. It’s not Johann Strauss ’cause that one’s the orange. But I’ll find out the name of it.

– I wanna say pink perfection.

– Oh pink charm maybe.

– Pink charm, okay.

– Thank you Lisa, here’s standard, beautiful garden variety daffodils. Ours are so luscious right now. And the doubles, the double bloom ones, they’re so pretty.

– Oh I love it.

– And then there’s the narcissist style varieties of the little mini ones, see those.

– So cute!

– They’re cuteand then the white which normally we see around the Christmas time. The paper whites, they’re forced, but really pretty for spring, I love them. Because it’s spring, I thought I’d showcase some classic spring flowers, these are forget-me-nots. Beautiful, pretty blue, everyone’s favorite lily of the valley, so beautiful. That’s my birth flower by the way.

– I love it.

– We’ve been showing a lot of the died sweet peas, but just the classic, beautiful, regular sweet peas. These are also Japanese, we haven’t got a lot of local ones yet but they’re just so precious. And so pretty for this time of year. And then this locally grown pennycress. So when you get this from Holland it’s quite expensive. But here we’re getting it in right now and it’s very pretty and it kinda will bloom out little white flowers. This is a nice filler to use. It’s not really a greenery, it’s a flower or sort of a cross between I guess. Very pretty and then one dramatic thing to show you. We have some really beautiful giant nerine clooney ranunculus, they’re so dark I don’t know if you can see them on the screen.

– Yeah I can see them.

– Gorgeous.

– Yep looks good.

– So it’s that time of year for gorgeous ranunculus, anenomes, spring flowers, daffodils, tulips and all those fun things. We’re really excited for all the stuff coming in right now.

– Thanks Shelley.

– You’re welcome.

– And we just recently published a New Flower 411 so if you want updates directly from our Mayesh purchasing department, they know what’s going on in the world of flowers ’cause that’s their job and they’re good at it so check that out. We’ll post a link for that so you guys can go and see our March Flower 411. Now it’s time for our first question. Comes from Jen and Jesse and I feel like we can talk about this next couple of shows, but I wanted to see what you guys are seeing in terms of trends for the new year. And even Shelley before you talk about what you’re seeing, I’d also love for everyone else as well to let us know what you guys are seeing in your neck of the woods as well because while there’s, I feel like, some national things going on, there’s always different things happening in everyone’s different regions. So Dave, Shelley, what are you guys seeing right now?

– Yeah, pampas grass ceremony circles seem to be all over IG right now. As well as the bleached and preserved foliages and fillers. So those things are everywhere. I know we’ve been featuring these at all of our locations but the earth tone dyed brownies. These are the anemones but we’ve got tulips and a bunch of other stuff that they’re dying right now have just really blown up as far as the trend. And like I said, dyed flowers, who knew, but here they are.

– Yeah the dried trend is really big here in California. The boho wedding look here, the Joshua tree look, all the textures and fillers and things that you see with drieds have been still going strong. And this year it’s been, I think, the epic of that with the drieds. California tends to set the trends for the rest of the United States so you may not see that progressing over the country until maybe next year but they’re going strong here. I also am seeing a lot more color. I know when we were in Quito at the workshop, Sue and Holly did vibrant colors, you know this year coral’s the Pantone color of the year, but I really felt like they did a really great job showcasing that and I think people are gonna start moving away from so much nude and natural. I mean that’s still gonna always be popular and probably the most requested for brides. But once you start seeing that color hit this year, you’ll see it next year in trends even bigger. I think people are getting tired of seeing the same palette all the time. So citrusy bride, tropical, fruity tones. And tropical foliage is used more, a mixture of exotic and tropical flowers with standard garden style flowers too, that sort of tropical Hawaiian sort of feel will kind of come on as well. So those are the things we’re seeing here.

– Yeah and I definitely wanna second the tropical theme. I’m seeing it showing up even in design of interiors and things like that. Monstera wallpapers and pillows and things like that. And then I just saw on a Facebook group a groom walking down the aisle in a tropical printed suit. So that’s a lot for me, but you know, there are brides and grooms out there that love it, take it to that level.

– I think people are looking for just out of the box ideas now, I mean, we’ve been so aesthetically tasteful and beautiful for so long, I think people want to see kinda shocking things or brighter colors or things that they just don’t fit the wedding mold anymore. You know we see that with Birch Floral doing some crazy colors and things and I think that’s gonna hit in the next two years. We’re gonna kinda move away from this pretty aesthetic.

– Yeah, and we have a big designer that comes down to the Miami area. He’s from New York and he’s been here for a couple weeks now and he did a huge event and my husband went foraging for him and just got a bunch of dead palm fronds and just–

– Weird, yep.

– Yep and he used that and it looked freaking amazing so yeah the tropical, kinda big patterns, the bright colors and strong lines is definitely a thing now so definitely look out for that.

– Yeah we have a lot of people asking us to dry palm and palmetto fronds right now. It’s pretty interesting.

– And luckily around here they’re pretty easy to find ’cause they’re just dropped dead all over your yard. So you just gotta cut them down. Very cool, so Jen and Jesse, I love that question. It’s definitely one of my favorite questions for the show and with that, if you want a mug, make sure you send me your, yep thanks Dave. If you want that mug, that super cute Mornings with Mayesh mug, shoot me over your address and we’ll send you one, so thanks Jen and Jesse! Okay our next question comes from Yazmine. She says what’s a good dusty blush rose, guys?

– There are quite a few varieties in varying gradients of blush to light pink. I’ll list a few of my favorites and then Shelley you can kick in. There’s Esther, Nena, Jessika, Faith, Pink Mondial and Sweet Akito, those are all standard roses. In garden roses Keira, Pink O’hara, White O’hara, Charity, Tsumugi, and Wedding Spirit are some of the really nice blushy, kinda dusty pink tones. In spray roses, you’re a little bit more limited. There’s Star Blush, Sweet Sensation, and a new one we’ve been carrying here. It’s not really a new variety, but new for our market is Royal Porcelina which is really pretty light blushy pink.

– Yeah for dusty rose is a hard one too ’cause it’s not always a lighter pink. It’s kind of a mid tone pink so you can think of like a geraldine or a romantic antique. There’s also modular perla, I like those, sweet eskimo, so it’s, and there’s one that we saw when we were down at Greenrose, I don’t know if it was hot carpe diem or, I can’t remember the name of it. I’ll look it up and put it on our list, but I thought wow that’s a good dusty blush or dusty rose ’cause dusty rose can be kind of hard. It needs, I think that’s what the designer’s asking. Sometimes it’s a little hard to find that good mid tone pink that’s not Barbie pink, not pastel pink, not baby pink. But those are some of my favorites.

– You can look on your handy Greenrose

– Oh yeah I have that.

– Card thing which I really think this is cool, guys. Do you see this, so this is from, we did go visit Greenrose which was amazing by the way. You guys really missed out, but they gave everyone these, they’re like paint chips but with roses on them so it was pretty cool. So we can check that out for you while we’re talking. I wouldn’t know what to look for so I’ll let Shelley do that. It would take me probably forever to figure it out. Let’s see Penny, I just wanted to put this up here. Penny Stone there’s a lisianthus that’s spot on for a dusty rose color.

– Yeah there is.

– Do you know the name of that by any chance?

– I know the name of that variety, but it is like a true, dusty rose kinda can be, some people will call dusty rose mauve too. Mauve, dusty rose kinda have the, mauve has a little more purple undertone. Dusty rose is a little more red undertone. But yeah, there is mhmm. It’s an elusive color.

– And then of course, hi Brad! Brad just was celebrating his birthday, so happy birthday Bradley!

– Hi Bradley.

– And if you guys don’t know he’s from Design Master and he Just for Flowers can help shift and blend when you’re in a pinch, shameless plug. I like shameless plugs though, it’s all good. I mean that’s why you’re up here, thank you Brad. Thank for tuning in, too. Tanya says, how do I get one? You want one of these bad boys I’m assuming. I don’t know, I’ll talk to Greenrose and see if I can get some of these. And maybe I then can give them away as well. So I think that would be kinda cool ’cause I feel like people would love these. But I’m imagining that these are pretty pricey to produce. So I probably can’t get a ton of them, but I will see what I can do, sound good? Let me see, okay how do I get away. Alright there we go, alright time to, oh and before I move on to the next question, we do have a really cool rose guide for you guys. And Desi put the link in the comments below. So you guys can check that out and I will put that on the screen too just so you guys can see. If you go to, and then /rose-guide you guys can check that out. Cool beans, alright, moving on.

– Hi Nancy, Nancy’s in our comments.

– Hi Nancy, Nancy came to Quito with us. We love Nancy, she’s so sweet and her hubby. Okay Sharlet wants to know, which months are best for anemones.

– So anemones are grown all over the world and are readily available almost all year round with the exception of July and August when the production dips really low. So I had a great thought, we’re carrying these micro gerberas and they’re coming out of Canada right now. You can’t get a true blue or purple like an anemone but they do come in an array of other colors and they’re about the same size with a little black center.

– They’re cute!

– Yeah they’re adorable, I mean look at how small those are. They’re tiny, you could do a boutonniere out of that. They’re just adorbs, so anyway I wanted to bring that up as a possible sub for an anemone.

– Yeah anemones are a spring flower so they’re available naturally from December on through this time of year. We have local growers right now growing the most beautiful anemones, they’re huge. So I shoulda actually showed you guys some anemones. But we have really pretty anemones right now. So it’s this time of year, you can get them year round but just remember they’re gonna be itty bitty and not always the nicest.

– Good to know, guys, our next question is from Penny. She wants to know about white king protea. They’re very very expensive wholesale and she wants to know if there’s any alternatives for this fabulous bloom.

– Yeah there’s nothing as cool on earth as a white king protea, that’s true. But subbing for those are really difficult. When in season, this white kale is a really good sub. It takes up a lot of space like a king protea, but this isn’t available year round either. So we’re starting to import all these bleached flowers and foliages from Holland and one of the ways that you can make a great impression would be with some of that as an alternative. There’s palm leaves, poppy pods, amaranthus they’re doing all the bleaching with so you could get a similar effect.

– Good to know, Shelley you have any thoughts on this?

– Yeah you can also use queen protea when they’re not, when the king are not in season. You can tint them with our favorite design master and kind of recreate that look. There’s also white owl, white mink proteas if your bride just wants something that’s kind of big and showy and textural and is interesting looking like a protea. You can also find artificial ones if you really have to have it and they’re out of season. An artificial flower, a well-made artificial flower tucked in with fresh products is sometimes virtually impossible to tell it’s not the real thing. And you can also take dried protea that you’ve dried and take the petals off and actually add it to an artificial to recreate the texture of it. So you gotta get creative sometimes. The true season for king proteas I believe is January, believe it or not. But they’re very hard to get and they’re very limited. So it’s not, even when we do get them, we only get a handful per branch. It’s not like you can order 100 white king proteas and have them, it’s difficult. So they’re hard to get sometimes.

– Yeah and I think this would be the reason why they are expensive and hard to get because they take two years to produce one bloom.

– One plant takes two years to produce, yep right Sylvia.

– Yeah thanks Sylvia, that’s crazy to me. It really, you know, in going back, I’m still stuck in Quito, my head is still there. But just learning and hearing, you know as wholesalers we do get to learn about the growing process probably a little bit more than other people, but it’s just still amazing to see the people and the time and the effort it takes to create one bloom of anything. And just a rose and what they go through and going to Valen Fleur and they’re talking about their breeding process and how many varieties they go through to find the next new best thing that want to produce for you guys. So it’s just always mind-boggling to me and people kinda forget that when we’re on our day to day.

– Yeah I have a total new appreciation for, I mean I already did appreciate, but just seeing how these growers are producing and growing product for us and the lengths they go to and how many hands pass just to produce one flower. It’s really an amazing process that we should respect.

– Yeah and it’s not like this automated thing. I feel like with, I don’t know, with Siri and Alexa everything’s so automated and it’s done immediately, that’s not our industry. The people are planting these things by hand and picking them by hand and there’s experts for each individual variety so that they know how to cut it and get it done quickly. Everything’s done by hand so it’s again just really amazing artisan community that we are very lucky to be a part of. Alright let’s see our next question is from Jill, she says I have a bride this summer looking for a showy piece using Monstera leaves but again they’re expensive, can you suggest an alternative?

– I brought some aralia leaf, it doesn’t come in sizes quite as large as the bigger monstera, but I mean you can fill up some space with that. There’s a lot of other tropical options, but they’re gonna have a different shape and a different look like birds of paradise leaves for instance, they’re taller and linear as is hola leaf. We import these from places like Costa Rica and Hawaii so unless you have a secret local source for monstera leaf, there’s a lot of freight cost involved in shipping them to us. Another option would be, circling back to what Shelley just said would be to invest in some artificial monstera leaves that you can reuse over and over again.

– Yeah you can even custom paint artificial product to get a more realistic look. If they look a little flat, you can touch them with acrylic paint. And a lot of people are just straight painting them anyway, solid white or gold or whatever. And once you paint something it’s very hard to tell whether it’s real or not. But yeah Dave’s suggestions are great. Aralia’s wonderful to use as well. It doesn’t quite have the same pow as monstera, so you just have to start, I think when brides want that kinda stuff, you just have to explain to them that’s why it looks so amazing, and that’s why it costs as much as it does ’cause it is an unusual plant. Unusual to get as well and slow growing.

– Yeah or you can move down to somewhere like here where they’ll grow in your backyard.

– Exactly.

– In California it grows pretty well, I’ve had luck growing them in pots so if you can do that, but it takes a while to get those big leaves, those big daddies.

– Yeah very good, very good. Okay Kirsten Gordon says, a question I would to talk about is what flowers can be obtained in America that are good choices for spring, summer, and fall weddings and if we choose two or three focus flowers how we would mix these in more commonly known flowers like hydrangea and roses. In other words, how do we best play up the stars of each season?

– Pick up the phone, call us, talk to us. We’re always excited to tell you what’s hot in our coolers. There’s so many options it’s mind-boggling. And impossible to list all the combinations here. Best advice check out our 12 month flower availability list. Try to plan around what we have listed. My disclaimer would be always double check with your sales rep closer to your event in case there’s problems with production of a particular item. Things do unexpectedly come and go out of season sometimes.

– Yeah, if you stick with your season, like California grows a lot of local product, tulips, anemones, ranunculus, so all those spring and summer flowers, we have dahlias in the summertime and through the late fall. So focus on those items to showcase your spring and then you can mix with other more common flowers. It’s kind of a melting pot right now of all different kinds of design styles anyways. So if you want it to look springy, then you wanna choose classic spring flowers like we just showed you. So summer flowers are more like dahlias, roses, gladiolas are even a summer flower. So look at what kind of overall style you’re trying to do then mix those other flower in to give you some balance and keep your cost down.

– Good advice, and our flower guide is awesome. It is our availability list put together in one handy dandy guide, but as Dave said, and just like with our flower library that’s available or any other resource that anyone else provides, all that has to be taken with a grain of salt because we’re dealing with mother nature, we’re dealing with logistics and all that crazy stuff. So it really affects what the actual data’s going to be for your real event date. Alright guys, good stuff though Kirsten, thank you for the question and you have another question. She said I would like to hear about the different types of garland that we make and different options, she has a lot of brides asking about using greenery because they either want that look or perceive that it is cheaper than using flowers. Need to go past the basic eucalyptus garlands. Guys, what do you got to say?

– Yeah garland’s are a fantastic way to make a statement for any event, but they’re extremely labor intensive and even with the most frugal selection of foliage they’re still not really cheap to fabricate. To cut your cost you can start with something big and bulky yet affordable, lemon leaf or silver dollar euc or anything that’s cheap and in season and then add bits of textural interest later with some more expensive greens. I can tell you from personal experience, from hand wiring with paddle wire and string, making garlands can be a lesson in humility. If they’re not fabricated correctly, they will fail and they gap in sections which makes them extremely difficult to repair at a moment’s notice when you’re doing an installation. So having Mayesh manufacture your garlands by one of our experienced garland machine operators will provide you a super strong, reliable base. Shameless plug.

– Love shameless plugs, yes and so Ryan says does Mayesh do pre-built garlands? I should know this, hi Ryan by the way from Curry. We love Curry and we love Ryan. Yes, we do produce garlands, custom garlands based off of request and that will be another guide that I’m working on with my team. It’s in our funnel of things that we need to get done for you guys so we’ll definitely get more information out. But is there anything that you guys wanted to, like how does that work, do you guys wanna talk a little bit about that?

– Go ahead, Shelley.

– Well we have someone make them in house for us and then also our Riverside location custom makes them for all of our branches. And I don’t know why brides think that greenery garlands are cheap to do. They always think that’s a cheaper option and it’s not. They’re labor intensive to make, they take a lot of product so it’s up to you as a florist to let people know that that’s actually not an inexpensive option. It can give you a different look than doing a floral, but then by the time you add flowers to a garland which most brides also ask for, it can be quite expensive to do. And it’s labor intensive, like Dave said, to make the garlands then they have to add flowers to them and do all that and there’s not a cheap option. You can make garlands out of any greenery pretty much. There’s some that are gonna be more tender and go down faster. Another option is if you need to do it inexpensively, is just to lay greenery down the center of a table to give a garland effect and that takes less product, but that’s still labor intensive to do that as well. But yeah you can order them from our branches.

– Yep and then, I love, again, Huntress Florals saying we only made our own garland once and then after that they ordered it.

– It’s a lot of work, it takes time to do.

– Yep, time and money, gotta love it. Okay so Monica, we’re moving on to the next question. She says how is the floral industry evolving and working to keep up with the standards of improved environmental and health impact through our products, supplies and cut flowers, in other words, what changes are being made to reduce health risks of working with commercially grown cut flowers and supplies like foam, etc?

– There have been many positive strides in the global floral community over the past 30 years to improve agricultural sustainability. At Mayesh we do our own little part by purchasing from Veriflora, Florverde and Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. These farms follow strict guidelines for sustainable agricultural production. Some of these practices include biological pest control, composting, water reclamation, safe storage, and education of handling the chemicals, proper land management that supports healthy regional habitat. Sustainability also ensures growers adhere to fair labor practices for their employees which provide better wages, a safer workplace, and resources like medical and daycare.

– Yep, things have changed quite a bit over the last 20 to 30 years. You guys know I’m a big proponent of having as much of a low carbon footprint for our industry as possible. We were very excited when we visited Greenrose and how their practices fall in line with that. Their farm was impeccable, their employees were well treated, it was a really great experience and it was a good experience for all of our florists that went to see how the changes have been made. And this provides income and livelihood for these people in Ecuador that before didn’t really make very much money or the farms didn’t really take care of them like they should have, that has changed a lot. And I was really pleased, I think we all kinda had a really good experience there with that. And I think as a florist there’s a lot of things you can do. Composting your product is one thing instead of just throwing it out in the trash. Recycling all your cardboard, plastic brads, rubber bands, anything that comes in in your packaging make sure that you’re separating and recycling that properly. I’m a big fan of using chicken wire or poultry wire or florist Oasis net instead of using Oasis or I should say floral foam. If you can use less floral foam, that’s always better as well. It’s not always necessary to use that. It’s got its uses but there’s ways that you can use less of that, I teach that in my classes. Recycling or using up cycled containers, repurposing containers, using things that you can get back and reuse again. Those are all very important things that you can do and using plants and materials that can be repurposed for the bride or your customer in arrangements, that’s always nice. So it’s a lot of things that you can do to be more environmentally friendly. But I think the floral industry is finally taking notice that you as consumers are talking about this and this is important to you now.

– Yeah, and going back to Greenrose, too. They also provide a lot of jobs for women where other companies don’t traditionally hire women in South America so that was cool. And then they had just installed a really cool water system to help recycle all of their water.

– Yeah that was cool.

– Did you get to hear about that? I was kind of on the outside, did you wanna talk like two seconds about that?

– They had a huge pond that, they have a facility where they’re taking their water and they’re recycling and reusing it to water their farm which is amazing. So they’re cleaning up their own waste that they’re using and reusing it there at the farm level. And they are taking those steps. It’s not something that they were required to do, I believe. I think that was something that they decided to do to be more environmentally friendly. It was very nice to see that. We’ve all heard these horror stories about the South American farms and how their employees are treated, the pesticides and all that, and yes there are still pesticides being used. Unfortunately American consumers want blemish free product and an organic product is an ugly product. If you look at organic apples or flowers that are grown, I mean we have American grown flowers too, they’re not perfectly grown because we have this level that we want our product to look. You want a perfectly shiny apple, that is not organic so we have to sort of lessen our expectation of what we want out of the product I think, if you don’t want it blemish free. You’re going to have to use these pesticides and chemicals to keep that from happening. But they’re doing a lot to help that. And I was very pleased to see that as well.

– Yeah if you don’t mind bug bites and ugly shaped things and stuff like that, then–

– That’s nature, folks.

– And there are designers that love that, like Christi’s one of those designers where if something came in and there was, you know, it was organic and there was bug bites on it she was all about it, she was like it makes it look like it’s from my garden. I like that look.

– It’s natural, yeah. Natural, but we are, sometimes, a hermetically sealed people and we want everything perfect and pristine so flowers are not. If you grow your own flowers you know how there’s something charming about a rose petal that has a little hole in it where a little whatever chewed through its leaf. I mean it’s just charming.

– Yep, Penny has a question on here it says does anyone use frogs anymore? And yes people do use frogs, Veronica who is our other designer for Quito, does a lot of our Spanish videos, she has a whole collection of frogs and we gave frogs to all of our attendees too and we have done, Kayley last year did a design video using a flower frog. So she loves frogs as well, so everyone else that’s watching, do you guys use frogs? And then Shelley did you wanna talk a little bit about that, I see you shaking your head.

– Yeah frogs are wonderful to use and we’ve talked about them on the show before. They are an expense for a lot of florists so some people shy away from using them, but if you, say you have a client that you always do her weekly arrangement for, you could use a flower frog in conjunction with chicken wire and both those things are great for an armature in your design and you get that back and recycle it every week instead of throwing out a block of Oasis every week. So it’s a wonderful product to use. They’re very easy to use and they’re not hard. I think one thing most florists don’t know, they need to use stick-em, the floral clay to attach it to the bottom of a container. So if you’re using the same container over and over again. But for weddings and things like that, they can be a little cost-prohibitive and sometimes not necessary, but they’re wonderful to use. I use them all the time, I collect them actually. I have a whole collection of them.

– Yeah, so do Veronica, you can walk in her studio and she’s got a big giant drawer of them, it’s really cool. And then Linda wants to know can floral foam be reused, I don’t think so.

– No it cannot, once it’s been saturated, you can keep adding water to it to rehydrate it, but if it dries out it cannot be resaturated. It just doesn’t work very well.

– Yep exactly, okay good stuff. We’re gonna move on to the next question from Jeanette. She says what are your thoughts on Oasis solution 360 where no cutting of the stems is necessary for processing?

– We actually use that in our branch here. It’s saved us a ton on labor so what that product is is a super hydrator and it keeps bacteria levels very low. You can actually have dry packed flowers out of the box and just stick them right in the water. And I, as a florist, thought what! That is not gonna work, I was like how can that even work? I was scared I have to say, but it works great and we use it here. There’s a couple of flowers it doesn’t work well with. I think it’s gerberas and sunflowers. And if you’re in doubt, it doesn’t hurt to recut the stems anyway, put it in, that water is fantastic, it helps the flowers live longer. You can even reactivate it, the company sells tablets so it’s also eco-friendly. You can reuse that water, put the tablets in it and it cleans the water and it’s reusable. The guy from the company told me that it was also safe to drink, but I don’t think I’d wanna do that. ‘Cause we here at Carlsbad were not able to, at our old location, were not able to pour water down the drains ’cause it goes out into the ocean here through the system here. And he said it was perfectly safe to do that. So I’d have to research that a little bit more to be sure but it’s supposed to be very safe for the environment as well. And it does work well and I love it. And I always tell my girls when they pick, or my florists when they pick up here, if they use buckets from us to keep the water in it and reuse it in their arrangements for processing, not to toss it out.

– Yeah, Laura Kellogg says what was that product? And we’re talking about the Oasis 360 solution. Hopefully Desi can find a link and we can share the link for that solution.

– I think it’s also called DE Express as well. We get it in huge drums and there’s machines that, by the way, one of our customers has a outdoor stand, you can attach it to your water unit. So it comes in small drums and big drums and there’s a system that goes with it. And what it does is it mixes with your actual water and then you pour it out through the hose. So you have to mix it with water. If you do use that, but everyone in my shops uses it. It saves a ton of labor.

– Good stuff, and labor is time and time is money.

– That’s right.

– Alright, next question and I’m not sure who this is from so I’m sorry guys. Chocolate cosmos, is it edible?

– Well as good as they smell, it’s still not advisable to eat them. According to Gardeners World magazine, they have no measurable toxicity. However most commercial flower farms use some form of pesticide during production so if it’s not a USDA certified for human consumption, please don’t eat them. Here I have actual chocolate cosmos and the normal red cosmos and these are coming out in Japan right now, yeah they’re gorg. We do carry USDA certified organic edible flowers. For more information you’re gonna have to contact your rep on that, I believe we have a minimum we have to bring in so it’s a little bit prohibitive. And they can be a little bit pricey. But they are available if you have a need for them.

– Very cool, yeah so don’t eat the flowers even if they smell really good. And again it ties into what we already talked about with the pesticides and stuff like that. Alright, good stuff, our next question is from Kelley. She wants to know about the typical lifespan of Dusty Miller and how to keep good looking in her bouquets and arrangements, she feels like hers get droopy quickly and it’s very finicky. What do you guys have to offer for Kelley?

– In Phoenix, we import our Dusty Miller from an Ecuadorian grower almost all year round production on this stuff. Here’s a bunch just so you can see how big it is. So this has a really remarkably long vase life. It lasts up to a week or more. These are a variety that have been selected and hybridized so that they have the strong traits and I think they last a lot longer than stuff that you might forage from your garden. In my experience, the lacier leaves tend to be a little bit more fragile than these roundier leaf varieties. I don’t know if that’s your experience too, Shelley. There’s some things that we do when we’re hydrating Dusty Miller that can help and that’s avoid, let’s see here. Sorry I lost my place, avoid submerging their stems too deep or dripping water onto their leaves. The fuzzy surface tends to hold moisture and can activate botrytis spores and cause bacteria to form in the water quickly. Using the recommended flower food and dosage on that, recut the stems, and change the water frequently. That’ll ensure that they stay hydrated and firmed up.

– Yeah I also like the bel fiore, the Ecuadorian product as well. It holds up really well, it seems to be bred to be a little stronger. It is more expensive, it can be almost double the cost of local Dusty Miller, but it’s worth it if you end up throwing out a lot of Dusty Miller. I sometimes think it’s cut too early. That seems to be a lot of the problem with it. It doesn’t have very strong leaves. Sometimes it comes in fresh and it’s just wilty looking. But Dave’s right, the fuzziness of it, the way that that leaf is, it can get all kinds of problems with spores and don’t drip water on it, like Dave said. That’s probably one of the things that causes it to get, you notice the change of the color of the leaf. But recutting always, putting in warm water will always help perk things up. It could be an issue of it not being hydrated enough or being out of water for too long, so you can try that, but ask your Mayesh rep about the premium Dusty Miller if you still have a lot of issues with it, especially if you’re in a hot climate. That one seems to hold up very well.

– Good stuff, and Winnie has a similar question about Dusty Miller, she wanted to know how do you revive it and make sure it looks good the day of the wedding, do you guys have any tips for Winnie and Kelley probably as well?

– Yeah so Dusty Miller has tiny little hairy filaments all over the stems and leaves and these are called trichomes. They act as a deterrent for frost damage, insect attack, and they lessen the dehydration from the transpiration process. But those furry little coats can become the breeding ground for stem clogging bacteria, especially when they’re submerged during the hydration process. So try gently scraping some of the fur off of the part of the stem that’s gonna be submerged is one tip. Hydrate them in a shallow level of fresh solution instead of a deep plunge, recut your stems and replace the solution every day or two.

– Yeah and clean buckets, we can’t say that enough. Make sure your buckets are clean, no bacteria. They seem to be more susceptible to that so that’s always a good tip. Wash your buckets out with chlorine once or twice a week if you can, at least once a week.

– Good stuff, good thank guys. Not that I wanna mention another wholesale florist, but they just had a show and they had a designer there that said to spray the back of the leaf with matte white paint and it helps them keep from going limp. Never tried it but we’re going to. And if Bradley’s here, I’d be curious to know if he’s heard of something like that. So there you go, thanks Leroy French Flowers. I’m hoping I pronounced that correctly. Oh and then David, hey David, he is watching. David Dahlson from our Miami location and he says bees love those hairs to make their hives.

– Oh cool.

– He always has little known facts about our flowers and things so that’s very cool, thanks David. Alright guys, on to our next question from Linda. She says how do you handle brides who say they have their own materials for their flowers but they want you to design them? What do you guys do and while Shelley is talking about this I would love to know what you guys do who are watching ’cause I know this comes up every now and then.

– I think as a florist I got this question at least once a year from a bride. If I get my flowers wholesale will you design them for me? If I bring my containers will you arrange in them for me? You have to be very careful here and tread lightly because you have to control your product yourself and there’s no telling what happened with the product before it gets to you. So if you decide to do this, you gotta have a lot of rules and parameters in place and also I would be very careful about maybe posting that work that you do with whatever they bring in ’cause who knows what it will look like. It depends on what they’re talking about, there may be a bride who has some sentimental attachment to the roses in her garden and she just wants you to incorporate it into something. That’s fine, if you wanna use, if they want you to use their containers for example, make sure you preview and see those way ahead of time and you approve them that they’re waterproof, that they’re usable. You can have a bride who you think is talking about a container that’s this big and then she brings it in and it’s this big, can you see me? So you know, make sure that you approve everything, that you go over it, you’re not responsible, blah blah blah blah blah, write it in your contract. I wouldn’t do it personally because there’s just no way to control that. If you do that though and you use all of their product and you’re a smaller florist and you’re trying to just get some experience, make sure you charge a substantial design fee. They can’t think because they’re getting the flowers wholesale that it’s gonna be cheaper for them. What I mean by that is you have to value your time and your experience. If she wants to do it expensively, then she should do it herself, or get her friends to help her. If she’s coming to you as a designer, then you should be charging your rate, your fees for everything, delivery, set up, the van, you have to itemize it all and then present her with a cost. And it may be that it’s better for her just to have you do it yourself. And why isn’t she having you do it? So you have to explain to them and not shoot them down, but explain to them why it’s important to have a professional handle the wedding from beginning to end. You know the product better, you know the amounts to order, you know the color palette. She may bring you all this stuff and it’s not the right amount. You’re gonna actually do double work trying to figure out what she has to what you can work with and do and the numbers are not gonna work for you. So I would avoid this, this is a DIY bride who’s just trying to get out on the cheap, usually. Or friends, as we were just talking about this last night in a class. As a florist you always have all these friends who want to have you do their wedding for them and you still have to charge for your time so that’s my advice on that, I hope that you think about it and make sure that’s something that you wanna do for your business.

– Good stuff, yeah we have, let’s see, lots of people have some thoughts on here. Tracy says containers maybe, flowers no way. Now we have incorporated something from Grandma’s yard which is cute. Trista says we an exclusivity policy. We provide all stems, we do all flowers at our weddings. Also, pre approve all containers they provide.

– Great Trista, that’s great.

– Let’s see, I have told brides that want me to design with their own flowers based on the same reasons you said. I also have them bring in containers a month before the event, so yeah that’s good, good stuff Susan.

– It’s really important about the containers too, because you may quote them one price and that container is not gonna work for what you quoted in your original budget. I would, if they actually are thinking that in the beginning and you’re having that conversation with them, I would say bring me in what you’re thinking about and let’s see if it’s gonna work with your budget. Because even at that point you are gonna have to renegotiate with them on the price of the centerpiece if it’s not the right container. So that’s all stuff that it’s just, be preemptive from the beginning. Control your business from the beginning.

– I have like one more minute, so let me see if I can find a question. Texanna, what rose still has the strongest scent? And I heard that the trend is smaller wedding bouquets because of the recent royal weddings. What do you guys have to say? Strongest scent rose and small wedding bouquets.

– Vitality, it’s a garden rose, and patience. Both of those have super high fragrance. A lot of standard roses don’t have a lot of fragrance. Fragrance is bred out of roses, they have to lose something to get a longer shelf life on the flower. And a flower uses a lot of its carbs in fragrance. So the vitality garden rose which, it’s probably one of the strongest smelling. I don’t know, Dave, if you have a favorite, but on standard roses there’s not any that have a super strong scent. There are some that are scented, but not super strong.

– Yeah, I think my favorite, fragrance wise, would be patience, it’s pretty strong.

– Patience, yeah. Yeah vitality and patience are about similar. Vitality doesn’t always look really pretty in the package but it opens up really gorgeous. And then on the question about the trend on smaller bridal bouquets, you will see that, it’s gonna take about a year. Because what happens is people have to get requests for that and then photo shoots are done and then all that stuff has to get published and then it shows up a year later and then brides start seeing it and then that’s when they go oh that’s cool and beautiful, I think I wanna do that. So it’ll take a year or two to go through the whole system of how things get done. You may start having some brides come in who say they want that look. But that look was so small and tight, it’s still not for everyone, but it will start. You’ll start seeing that trend where things will start shrinking back to not that compact ball we used to have, but a lot more controlled arrangements. But you’ll see that trend, everything kinda goes out and back in on floral design.

– Yep good stuff, thank guys. I’m not gonna kick you off ’cause you know, we’re at the end of the show. I don’t have anything extra to add.

– Your electricity didn’t go off and I didn’t have any technical glitches, yay!

– I know, yay! So that’s a wrap on today’s Mornings with Mayesh. Thank you everyone for joining us. Make sure you mark your calendars for April 2nd. We’re gonna be back with Alison Ellis and then April 16th I will be back with Shelley and Dave. And I hope you guys can join us. Keep on sending in your floral questions. Thank you for joining us, I will see you guys soon. Have a rocking day, bye everyone. Thanks Dave and Shelley.

– Bye everybody. Thank you.

– Bye!

– Bye!

Mornings with Mayesh: Sarah Campbell

Mornings with Mayesh: Sarah Campbell


Yvonne sat down with Sarah Campbell, of Intrigue Teaches, to chat all about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase budgets and expand your portfolio. Be sure to watch until the end for a special promo as well! This was a great episode that you don’t want to miss!

And just in case you do not know our guest, Sarah, she is known for her wedding business expertise having launched several successful wedding businesses in the Annapolis, Maryland region. Sarah loves sharing her knowledge and helping her fellow design community, and started Intrigue Teaches. You can catch her doing Lives on Facebook & Instagram sharing her passion and she also offers workshops and classes. So what I’m trying to say is that if you don’t know Sarah, then you should.


Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:








  • To get started why don’t you tell us a little bit about how you started in the wedding business and what it morphed into?
    • start: Intrigue is known for large scale designs and over the top weddings.  I didn’t start with this caliber of a wedding. The desire to produce high-end events pushed me to change my marketing strategies.


  • What are your thoughts about luxury weddings – do you think all designers have the opportunity to do these types of events no matter where they are in the country?
    • Marketing: I often hear designers say that there is no money in their market. Or they can’t find weddings like Intrigue books. I am here to tell you that there is money to be found in each market. The challenge is finding it and I have a strategy!


  • You recommend looking at your virtual footprint – can you explain that?
    • Virtual Footprint: first look at the visuals you are using. Do they speak to the couples you are looking to book? Suggestions for adjusting your footprint ro attract your ideal client.


  • What other marketing strategies do you suggest to attract the luxury wedding clients?
    • Strategy: mass market approach. All social presence.


Question sent in early:

  • Floral Designs Maui, IG: One question we do have is, how do we begin to evolve our company into a different design category? In other words, say we are known for doing a particular style, but we would also like to move more towards the bespoke gardeny style that is growing in floristry. What are some ways that we can begin to promote that to our clients and coordinators that we work with?


Questions we didn’t have time to answer during the live show:

  • Jaime: What is your favorite recipe/palette for weddings?
    • I tend to gravitate to big fluffy flowers like Peony, Garden Roses, and Ranunculus. My favorite colors personal are in the blue family, but, for Intrigue, I tend to gravitate to Coral, Peach, Pink, and Champagne.
  • Johanna: I’m starting my business, would advertising local venues be a good idea? If yes, what do you have any advice or suggestions on how to advertise?
    • I always recommend starting locally. Start by meeting the local catering directors and building those relationships. From there ask to be added to the preferred vendors list and if available buy ad space in their showcase flyer.
  • Robin: I like to bring my own personal photographer to the set up of our weddings, but sadly, I’m starting to get many photographers that explain that they are contracted to be the exclusive photographer. It has caused some friction and makes it difficult for my branding as I want particular looks that that photographer doesn’t necessarily do or focus on. Any suggestions???
    • This is a personal decision. I too will travel with my own photographer in some instances. This can create friction and when I do bring my photographer with me I make sure they are only shooting my designs when the contracted photographer is not present and I never have them photograph the bride or the family for any reason. My photographer’s priority is solely my flowers. I find that by building relationships with my photographers in advance and referring my photographer friends as often as possible my brides get a better experience and I get images easily without having to bring my own photographer.
  • Amanda:  I relocated from the PNW to the Deep South. I’m having a hard time breaking into the market. How long do I give myself before rebranding into more of what is popular here? (Only been here for a few months)
    • Forget about “What is Popular” and focus on being true to your brand and what you want to be known for. You will attract more business by being different than by looking like everyone else.
  • Jennifer: Do you have any advice for a wedding planner who’s in the process of adding floral design services.
    • Make a clear distinction in your business. Set the floral division up as a separate entity and bill it separately.  Be honest with your clients that you have launched a new division and educate them on what you can provide for them. Of course get training and make sure you can properly execute their requests. Be honest with your florists you are currently working with. If you bring a client to meet with a florist as part of your planning business be respectful of this relationship and do not offer your flowers to that same client.
  • Serena: Do you have any links for transforming Rose’s into peony?
  • Roxanne: Can Sarah speak to her hot water processing?
    • I almost always process into hot water. I have been taught that the heat allows the cells to open up and absorb more hydration.


Items/Links mentioned:


Intrigued Experience

This conference SOLD OUT in a mind blowing 7 DAYS!  However, Mayesh has 2 seats reserved exclusively for our customers. To access these two seats, go to and use the CODE: mayesh



Our next show is scheduled for February 19th. On behalf of our Mayesh family, we wish you a very successful Valentine’s Day!





– Hey everyone, it’s Yvonne here. I am the Marketing Director over at Mayesh Wholesale Florist. And welcome to our February 5th Mornings with Mayesh show. This is a super special show, guys, because I have a very special guest, Sarah Campbell. And she is here to chat about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase your budgets and expand your portfolio. Very, very exciting stuff. So, if you want to increase your wedding and event business, then be sure to stick around. Awesome. I’m gonna give you guys a few minutes to come on in. I know there’s been a lot of emails that were sent out, and I just hopped on a bunch of lives trying to make sure everyone knows that we’re doing this this morning. It’s also an hour later than our normal scheduled show. So, thank you. I’m curious to see if you guys like it an hour later, don’t like it. Send me your feedback about this. Is it crazy that we do it at 10 a.m. Eastern Time because I know it’s super early for you West Coasters. So, yeah, just let me know. Good morning, Erica. Hi, Penny. Thank you for joining us again. Shelby, good morning. How is everyone doing? All right. I also wanted to make sure that you guys know if this is your first time watching on Facebook Live if you have any questions for Sarah, or for myself, go ahead and post them in the comments below and we, as long as we have enough time, will definitely get to those questions and answer them for you all. Sound good? All right, also this replay will be up on our blog in probably a day or two. So, it’ll be the video replay, my show notes that we used to create this show, so that way you have something to read if you’re a reader, and also our podcast replay. So, if you want to listen to this amazing show while you’re driving to work, you can do that. Or, if you’re walking and trying to get your steps in for the day, you can do that. So, very cool. Make sure you check out our podcast. And I also, thinking about feedback, how into podcasts are you guys? I love podcasts. I listen to a lot of different marketing and strategy type of podcasts, I know some of you guys are into this whole mystery murder type of podcast. I see those are very popular. But, let me know what you guys think about podcasts, just in general in the comments. I’d love to hear your guys’ thoughts on that. And then also, of course, this show is bought to you by our Mayesh Design Star Flower Workshop Tour. Guys, we have three more dates left with Shean Strong. So, super, super excited. I don’t know if you guys saw his January video. We just released it, I think, about a week or two ago and it’s doing amazing. So, if you don’t know who Shean is, be sure you check out that video. Be sure you go over to his Instagram ’cause he’s just amazing. We love our 2019 Design Star. And so, our Workshop Tours with Shean Strong are May, we’ll be heading to Nashville, August, we’ll be in Austin, and then, we are gonna shoot on over and end everything for the tour in Columbus in November. So, check it out. We will post a link for that in the comments. Very cool. I also have, I believe, Desi. She is my lady behind the scenes, helping post all of our links, and helping me with the comments, and questions, and things like that. So, hi, Desi. Thanks for your help, babe. All right, guys. Oh! And last, but not least, make sure you save the date for our next scheduled show, which is February 19th. It’s the Tuesday after Valentine’s Day. I know a lot of you guys are gonna be exhausted. So, come on in, just wear your jammies. Grab that coffee cup. Hopefully, maybe, you might have a Mornings with Mayesh mug. And just join us for a good long chat, ’cause we have amazing questions for the next show. It’s going to be amazing and so good. I love it. I feel like I say amazing a lot, yeah? All right. All right, for all of you guys that are just joining us, welcome, welcome, welcome. I am Yvonne Ashton and welcome to Mornings with Mayesh show. Today, I have Sarah Campbell here to help us learn about wedding sales and marketing strategies to increase budgets and expand your portfolio. Definitely something I think could all use and I am bring on Sarah now. There we go. Hey, Sarah, how are you?

– Hi. Good, I’m so excited to be here.

– I’m so excited to have you. It’s finally! And we’ve known each other for a few years now, and so, I don’t know why we haven’t done this earlier. But I’m glad that we’re finally here.

– I am, too.

– And so, how are you doing today?

– Oh, wonderful. We’ve been doing so much travel this year, well, last year, that this year, new year, it feels so nice to be here in Maryland and just having some quieter, calmer times. Really nice. Which is probably why we have time to do this.

– Yes, you have been one busy lady. And guys, just in case you don’t know about our guest, I’m sure, I’m hoping a lot of you guys already do, but just in case. Sarah’s really known for her wedding business expertise. She’s launched several successful wedding businesses in the Annapolis, Maryland region. She loves sharing her knowledge and her passion, helping her fellow designers, and she started a company called Intrigue Teaches, which is really cool. It’s just all about sharing that wealth. You can catch her doing lives on Facebook and Instagram all of the time, which I really admire you for that, Sarah. And you also offer workshops and classes. So, what I’m trying to say is if you don’t know Sarah, then you should. Is that a good intro, or what?

– That’s fabulous. You can’t put it any better than that. Thank you so much.

– You’re welcome.

– I’m amazing right?

– You are amazing and you truly just inspire me cause’ it does take a lot of guts just to kinda, put yourself out there, and you’re putting yourself out there almost on a daily basis. So, kudos to that, and I just feel like it’s something that you just get better and better at. I’m petrified of doing these kinds of things, and I do stutter. I was just doing a YouTube live just to promote this, and I totally botched it, but you know what? It’s okay, mistakes happen and you learn and you just move on. So, I think for people want to get in to just live video in general, just watching you would be a really great inspiration for them.

– Oh especially because I am the queen of mistakes. I make mistakes all the time. In fact, we were recording with, we have a professional videographer that records our classes for use online, and I kinda made a fumble and a mistake, she’s like, oh, I’ll edit that out. I’m like, no, you can leave that right there. You know, we do make mistakes. And to pretend to be perfect is no fun, right?

– Right.

– So laugh along with me.

– I love it, I love it, I love it. So we’re gonna hop on into the questions. And I think to get started, why don’t you tell us a little bit more about how you started in the wedding business, and what it morphed into?

– Sure, sure. So I actually started my career in the wedding industry as a wedding planner, which is something that not everyone really knows. I jumped into the wedding planning business because I love parties, and social events, and I love beautiful things. And there’s a whole, long story about being thrust from planning into floral, and it definitely was not the ideal way, so it’s not the way I encourage people to dive into flowers. But there came a time when I just like, I had to take on flowers, it just had to happen. And then once I got my hands in flowers and I realized that not only was it such a beautiful medium to play with on a design and artistic end, I also found that there was more revenue that I could build through flowers. So it was about 10, to 14, I’m always wrong on years. I don’t know how many years. It was a lot of years ago, that I went full scale with not just doing wedding planning, but adding floral into my business. And then of course as anyone knows if you’ve tried to run a planning firm and a floral firm at the same time, that is a really tough balance to make. So I did have to sell off my planning firm and focus exclusively on florals. And that’s when my business really started to blossom. Blossom.

– I love it.

– I didn’t say that on purpose, but it’s so fitting.

– That’s very cool. And so what are your thoughts about luxury weddings? Do you think all designers have the opportunity to do these types of events, no matter where they are in the country?

– Absolutely.

– What are some of your thoughts there?

– So to really answer that, let me take you back a little bit. So when I first started getting into the wedding world, even before I touched flowers, there came to a point where I realized when I jumped into weddings, I had these big, grand dreams, over-the-top designs, luxury events. Meanwhile, I’m working in like church basements and Bingo halls, and I’m folding squeaky, metal chairs at the end of parties. That was not my dream at all. So I had tried to find some marketing education at the time. This was probably 15 plus years ago. Pre-Pinterest, Pre-Instagram, and it might have been pre-Facebook. Oh, my gosh. So there wasn’t those avenues to learn that were so easy. So I went to the library, and I checked out books, right? A giant stack of every marketing, high-end advertising book I could find. I remember just loading them in the backseat of my car thinking I don’t even know how I’m gonna read through these. And I studied how big companies, how large businesses marketed how they attracted luxury clients, and how they presented a luxury brand, and I started to really create the strategy for myself that I could take what these big businesses were doing, and work that into my floral, or at that time, my planning business, so that I could get into the right groups, and start connecting with those right weddings that would allow , sorry, I forgot to turn that notification off. Jordan, I might need your help. But it would allow me to really create these dream weddings. And so that really helped me a lot when I morphed into floral design a few years later. Because it gave me a springboard. Now, I had already figured out how to locate that high-end client, and then from locating the high-end client, then how to speak to that high-end client. And when I was doing the Intrigue Across America Tour last year, we taught business classes all over the country, in almost all 50 states. And consistently I would hear designers say, oh, Sarah, I love the weddings you do, but we don’t have the kind of money in my state. Los Angeles even told me that.

– No way.

– No, here’s the deal. Some of my biggest clients to date have come from some of the smallest markets in the country. There is money to be found everywhere. It’s really a matter of streamlining your marketing and your advertising, and starting to attract that higher-end client. Even more than that, there’s different advertising avenues you can take. Facebook is amazing right now. I know this is not a Facebook section, but we have never had a time in our careers where we’ve been able to say, okay, ad, I only want this ad to be shown to exactly the type of individual I want to sell you. Back in the day, we would take an ad in a magazine, right, and then cross our fingers.

– Yep.

– But now, we have control over that. So kind of learning some of those marketing techniques is really what helps to connect with that high-end client in every single market. That was a long answer.

– No, I love it. Love it so much. And I know that you recommend looking at your virtual footprint. Can you explain that a little bit?

– Sure. That’s definitely part of marketing. So a lot of times people say, well, I don’t know if people are looking at Instagram, or they’re looking at Facebook, or they’re looking at Pinterest, so I’m just gonna put a little bit out there. But I will tell you, whatever you put out there, whether it be a little bit or a lot, it needs to create this, what I call the virtual footprint. Create this area that when individuals look at it, they know it’s you. They can track you, they can follow you. If all of your visuals you’re using are different on every, single platform, it gets a little confusing to the viewer, and it’s harder for them to follow you. So this footprint should be very clear. With that, you’ll see that I have the same style the same essence of my designs when I’m sharing on Facebook, and Pinterest, and on Instagram. Of course, Instagram is my favorite place to hang out. That is my favorite social media source.

– Me, too.

– Yeah. So also with that footprint is you want to continue to keep it active. So with the new algorithms that are always changing, we’ve done multiple studies, just within the flower world for Instagram to see what’s working and what’s not. And as fast as we do a study, things are changing. So one of the big changes that happened is you start seeing that if you are not sharing regularly, which is like, daily, multiple times a day, your feed’ll start to get less, and less, and less attraction. That is because Instagram kinda like puts you in a time out and says, well, you know what? You’re not active. Like, no one cares about you. This sounds terrible, right? So we’re not gonna show everyone what you’re doing. But if you’re able to maintain that momentum, Facebook will continue to push your message out there. And you can see that firsthand on my feed. Like, if you go to the Intrigue feed you will see that if I’m having a downtime, or maybe I’m not working as much, you will see my numbers will really decrease, and the exposure will decrease just because I am not as active. I think it takes a lot of work, but there’s so much great reward on a marketing standpoint that it’s worth that time and effort.

– Yeah, I obviously completely agree. That’s a huge focus for my team, and I do have a marketing team, so I’m very, very lucky. But we focus a lot on content, creating really great quality content, and just making sure that we’re always posting. If we’re gonna have a social media page, it needs to be active. And so I’m a huge proponent of that. And being consistent. So creating content that is either educational or entertaining, or just helping awareness is just so key and important. And while it does take some time, you can create things that then, this show is a great example of that. I create this show, which is a very big piece of content, but you can then break them down into little mini ones. And so you might be able to create something really grand and big, and kind of chop it up into smaller pieces that you can kind of use on your Instagram feed, or smaller, shorter videos that can be more engaging, ’cause honestly, for everyone to sit here for a whole, entire hour is a lot to ask. And I get that.

– It’s a lot. It’s a lot.

– And also, the part that you talked about, no matter where the user is, you need them to know that it’s you. And so branding is huge for us. It took a little bit, I feel like, for some people in our company to understand like, why using a certain font is so, so important. We don’t want any other fonts used except for these one or two, or these colors. It’s like little, nitty, gritty things, but it’s very, the eye picks up on that. It might not be like so in your face, but even those small details are really important. So that way, just putting together like a quick branding guide, like this is what I want things to look like, and if it doesn’t look like that, then you can like go and tweak it, so that way everyone is on the same page with those types of things I think is great.

– You have done such an incredible job. I think that’s why I’m so drawn to you is because I’ve watched your marketing. Even when I’m busy and we’re not talking, like, I’m still watching. And I can see the shifts, and I can see the amount of time you put into it. And beyond that, I don’t know if anyone else is as aware as I am, you have helped build this industry like nobody else. You have supported me from day one, and I appreciate that. Even when I don’t think, maybe you were the only one who knew my name. It has been so incredible to have that support, and to see the way you support the floral industry as a whole, like, kudos to Mayesh and you for being able to do that, because we notice. So thank you.

– Yeah, yeah, you’re welcome. I feel very fortunate to work with Mayesh. And education is a huge thing for them as well. I’m lucky to have some amazing designers on my team, too, because when I kind of started in this role, I’m not like an amazing designer. I feel like I have good taste, but to create something beautiful is difficult. It takes skill.

– Yeah.

– We’ve slowly added those people on, and it makes a huge difference. So it definitely takes a village to do what we do, and I’m just really thankful to have an amazing team, and a company, and yeah, I love supporting people that have huge names like you, now, Sarah, and smaller names, and everyone in between, as long as we can. We’re one company, so we can only do so much. But just doing things like this, I love it. So thank you. I appreciate it. All right, so what are some other marketing strategies do you suggest to attract the luxury wedding clients, Sarah?

– All right, well, this kinda goes back a little bit to your footprint. You want to show off the visuals that you wanna sell. So if you really wanna sell like, these big, Intrigue-style centerpieces that just drip with flowers like I wanna sell every week, if that’s what you wanna do, that’s what you need to show off. You need to be showing on your feed the real things that you wanna sell. So you cannot complain that, oh my gosh, I never get clients, I want this kind of stuff if you’re never showing it. Now, that doesn’t mean that’s the only thing that clients are gonna ask for, because if you follow my feed, you know I very rarely will show lots of greenery and lots of organic, earthy elements. Not that I don’t love them, it’s just not the vibe that I share. But, in 2018, every single one of the weddings that Intrigue did were loaded with greenery. So they were wonderful, they were luxury events, they were beautiful. But they were definitely a different look than what I show. So you can be showing what you wanna sell, but keep in mind that it’s really a vibe, it’s energy that you’re giving with these images. So it does not mean that that person’s gonna buy that exact thing, but it’s going to allow you, by showing those luxury, high-end elements, it’s going to allow you to attract that right client. I’ve also had a number of people say, well, I don’t wanna show too much luxury, high-end images, because then my clients will think they can’t afford me. Well, I got news for you. Pretty much everyone will think they can’t afford you anyway when you’re showing pretty things, so don’t even worry about that. And it is good to filter off. So even though I believe everyone thinks they can’t afford a wedding florist when they’re seeing the images on social, there is that weeding out that some people just aren’t going to call because they really are only gonna spend 400, 600, maybe $1,000 on wedding flowers, and we all know to create these high-end looks you do need more than that. So don’t be too stressed about people not calling you because you’re showing high-end. You will get more calls when you’re showing those beautiful, well-polished images. And if you don’t have those images in your portfolio, get yourself to a workshop, to a class that’s going to allow you to use those images. I’ve seen some amazing images coming out of the Mayesh Star workshops over the years. In fact, I was looking at your schedule, and I think I need to come to Nashville with you.

– That’d be awesome! Come on!

– Natalie, our Creative Director is in Nashville as well. I’m like, oh, field trip, I’ll go visit. There really some beautiful, beautiful images, and be able to build your portfolio is so important. And honestly, on an investment side, it’s usually more beneficial to attend a workshop where you have hundreds or even thousands of flowers that you can play with, and photograph, and interact with as opposed to trying to buy those and figuring how to do it at home.

– Yeah. And just talking about the workshops, I know you guys do it the same way, but we bring the best of the best to our workshops. And we have an amazing photographer that we work with. And you get a whole portfolio of your work. You’ll get whatever large installation is done. And I love that idea of being able, instead of like doing a kind of style type of shoot where you’re investing a lot in that, and it’s just for the pictures, really, investing in the education to do that. I think that’s a wonderful tip. I didn’t even really think about that, you know?

– I first noticed it when we were on this tour last year, and I started seeing people that were signing up for not one, or two, but three tour stops. I think one person came to like five different tour stops.

– Wow.

– And I had to ask. After the third time this designer came, I said, well, what is this bringing you back? I am teaching the same things in every single state, with just a different color palette. And she said to me, she’s like, Sarah, she said, it makes more sense for me to come here multiple times. You’re gonna show me how to do and make it look right. You have the photographers on hand, and I’m building my portfolio. She was a third-year florist I believe that she just didn’t have the portfolio she wanted yet, and this helped her build her portfolio. And I thought, that’s genius! Why didn’t I think of that when I was building?

– Yeah, it is genius. It’s amazing. And we do say, like, oh, you get these to add to your portfolio, but I don’t, I didn’t ever think back to be like yeah, this is how you can build your business, too.

– Right, absolutely.

– Just adding some pretty pictures. Yeah, very cool. What else? What else do you have? Anything else you wanted to talk about, marketing strategy-wise?

– All right, so some of the easiest things to do when it comes to marketing, is first, just figure out what the visual is you wanna share. And pull those images together. If you don’t have images, like I said, get out to a workshop to build that portfolio. But start just pulling your images. Reaching out to those photographers to get images, reaching out to your brides to get images. If you absolutely have zero in your portfolio, just pick up some flowers, make some things, and start photographing them. And then I have one simple tip that is going to change everybody’s world right now. Are you ready?

– I’m ready.

– So video right now is stronger than photo is when it comes to social media. So Mark Zuckerberg and his big world of everything Facebook, Instagram marketing, he has deemed, I don’t know if he personally deemed or his team deemed, but he has deemed that the videos will be shown more than the photos. So even on my own feed, I could put a beautiful photo out there and it would get 1,000 likes, or 2,000 likes. And I get zero following, and very little interaction. On that same avenue, I put a time-lapse video on, and if you don’t know time-lapse, it’s like that speedy video, right?

– Mm-hmm.

– I put a time-lapse video on, and I can see growth of 100, 200, 500 followers from a good time-lapse video. So here is what’s gonna change everyone’s lives. I want everyone to set up their phone. Do it today, in your design studios. Oh, it’s Monday, we’re gonna have flowers. All right, so I sometimes, in the wedding world, in the wedding world, oh, it’s Tuesday. I don’t even know what day of the week it is. Well, in the wedding world, we don’t have flowers every week. For those of you that have flowers, I want you to take out your cell phone. There is a time-lapse, or a hyper-lapse option on both iPhones and on Droid. And I want you, maybe for the next week, just record quick time-lapses of you doing your work as you’re doing it. So you’re going to be designing anyway.

– Yep.

– Do a video, and start putting those on your feed, and see how they’re working. And if for any reason you don’t see it working, or you don’t understand, I invite you to personally send me a DM. You can ask me and I will answer you. If for any reason I don’t answer within 24 hours, it’s ’cause I got a lot of DMs, feel free to send me another one to make sure I didn’t miss it. But I’m happy to help anyone to figure out that rhythm on the videos. It has been so powerful. And I don’t have any like, virtual content I can share. I don’t have any lessons on this that I can share with everyone. So I give you myself. Feel free to ask me whatever you wanna ask. And I will answer for the time-lapse videos.

– Yeah, I love it. Video’s so huge, and you are an inspiration. Like, when I was looking through your feeds and things like that, I feel like we gotta step up our video game. Like, I need more videos, more videos!

– What? Yvonne is saying that to me?

– Yeah. Video is huge. And I’ve been talking about video for a while. I think it’s so important. It is a little nerve-racking, I think, for the designers who might not wanna get in front of a camera and talk. But I like the time-lapse idea because you don’t really have to be talking. You can just put a cool song on it, and there you go.

– And if you don’t wanna show your face in the beginning, it’s okay. I recommend you show your face, but if you don’t want to, just cut it down.

– Yeah.

– So Yvonne, I just had this random memory, this is totally off-script, but do you know what the first video I ever made was? The first floral video I ever made? I bet you can guess.

– I have the worst memory in the world, especially when I’m on live video.

– All right, so the reason I’m saying I bet you could guess is because the first floral video I ever made was for a dish that I did for the Mayesh Design Star years ago. Isn’t that so funny?

– That is crazy, crazy.

– So that’s kind of what tapped me into the whole world of videos. Like, oh that was fun, let’s do it again, and again, and again, and then here I am.

– I love it. Right, full circle. That’s so cool.

– If everyone’s wondering, no, I did not win.

– And it’s hard, it’s so hard picking designers. You don’t even know. And then the different things that we go through. Yeah, it’s a little crazy. But–

– Well, I am grateful for that bit of inspiration, ’cause it launched me into something I didn’t even know I was gonna be good at. So thank you.

– Yeah, you’re welcome. And you are, you’re very good at it. So we have a lot of questions, I think. I’ve been trying to kind of keep up a little bit and still pay attention to what you’re saying. But we had one that got sent in early from Instagram. It’s Floral Designs Maui. And they said, they would love to watch live, but six a.m. is a little too early for us Hawaiian folks.

– I’m worth it.

– Yeah, so they’re gonna watch the replay. By the way, I saw someone asking about a replay and if it’s in the email or anything other than Facebook? And yes, let me answer that question really quick. The replay will always be on Facebook. We also upload it to YouTube. You just need to give me a little bit of time. And then I turn it into a podcast. And then you’ll be able to find all of that on our website, on the blog, and if you’re subscribed to our email notifications, you’ll get an email of our blog post once it goes live. If you aren’t subscribed to our blog, you’re just in our email database, that’s okay, too, it’ll be included in our newsletter. But I try not to bombard everyone with a bazillion emails, but it will be up everywhere, and we will post about it on social media. So I hope that answers that question. So sorry, I need to go back to the question from Floral Designs Maui. So one question is, “How do we begin “to evolve our company into a different design category? “In other words, say we’re known “for doing a particular style, “we would also like to move towards “the bespoke gardeny style that is growing is floristry. “What are some ways that we can begin “to promote that to our clients and coordinators “that we work with?”

– Oh, I love this question. And I have the answer. First is, just start a rebrand for yourself. Look at everything. Look at your logo, look at your fonts, look at your website. Does that speak to that bespoke audience that you wanna talk to? And if the answer is no, you have some work to do. And I’m betting because you’re asking this question, that the answer is no. So what you’re gonna do is you’re going to create a look that you know is going to work. Do we ever know? That you believe and you feel strongly that you would be attracted to if you were looking for this bespoke gardening designer? And then, you wanna look at all of your ad spaces, even your free ad spaces, whether it be Wedding Wire, Knot, My Wedding, Perfect Wedding Guide, there’s so many of them out there. And you wanna make sure the imagery that you’re sharing, the part of your social footprint is on those ads, right? You wanna make sure those images are all connected to that bespoke garden essence that you want to attract. So everywhere that individuals are looking they’re going to see this. But then there’s one step further than you’re gonna need to take. Because you have already built your brand where you are, that is something different than you wanna build it into. So you need to do some networking. I’m talking old school, pounding the pavement, going and visit, make some arrangements. Make sure you photograph them and get your social media first, and then bring them to these venues, bring them to those bridal shops. These ones you already have these great relationships with, and say we’re starting to promote this new direction, these new designs, get them excited about what you are doing that is new.

– I love it. Perfect answer.

– Thank you.

– So Penny wanted to point our your turning a rose into a peony video. She says, “Wow.”

– Oh, thanks, Penny. I did not make that up. Someone taught me that. And I wish I could tell you who taught me those. I’ve been doing this for years, and years, and years, and I originally started doing it because now it’s pretty easy to get a garden rose that looks like a peony. But I don’t feel like we had as many options 10 years ago. So 10 years ago, I was learning all kinds of ways to MacGyver flowers. It’s funny I say MacGyver now, but I realize that half the audience doesn’t know who that is.

– I get it!

– Those of you who don’t know MacGyver, like he makes these cool things out of things that aren’t things. And he alwaysat the end. But that’s not flowery. So I will deconstruct and reconstruct flowers, and I feel like I’ve gotten to the point where I can make almost anything. There’s that one that everyone does is making the anemone out of the lisianthus. There is, gosh, I can’t even think of anything beyond that. But there’s so many different flowers that if you can’t get them, you can create them, or give those essence by pulling other elements of flowers together. And as a wedding designer, I never tell my clients no. The answer is always yes. You want peony off-season, the answer is always yes. You want anemone off-season, the answer is always yes. Now, I’m pretty good at finding them growing somewhere in the world, even if I have to buy a plane ticket to get that bunch of flowers on the plane and have it shipped. But if I can’t, or maybe Customs takes that bunch of flowers, then in most cases, I’m gonna have to MacGyver something, right? I’m gonna have to figure out a way. So that video, it was the first time I shared it in probably a couple years. But there’s a time-lapse video, and I can even give it to you if you wanna share it.

– Yeah, of course.

– But it’s a time-lapse video that just shows you, okay, I have this rose. I think we used a Sahara rose, and just turned it into what looked like a peony.

– I love it. Yeah, very, very cool. And that reminds me, we did like a blog post, I don’t even know if it’s still up on our blog, ’cause it’s old, but we called it Fr-anemone, ’cause the enemies and anemones and enemy and everyone loves it. So we called it Freemen, but it was flower hack on how to turn, I don’t know if it was like a lisi, or some other kind of flower into, and using like a eryngium, and making it look like an anemone.

– Right.

– A white anemone with a black center. So yeah, I love those kinds of things. That’s very fun.

– Now, anemones, I feel like this year, have changed. I don’t know what’s happening with the farms, or the shipping, but where I used to struggle so much with anemone, I don’t know if you’ve noticed that, anemone this year have been stunning. Like, great quality, opening beautifully, better than I’ve ever seen them before.

– Yeah, yeah, I don’t see too many people asking a ton of questions about them. That’s the only way that I can gauge it. ‘Cause unlike you, I don’t touch live flowers too often. But yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I can see that, that’s very cool. Good to know. It’s amazing how products evolve and change over time. All right, so I have Terrie Hall here, and she wants to know the name of Sarah’s business. But you have businesses.

– Okay.

– You wanna explain that?

– Look up under the word Intrigue. Whenever Intrigue is attached to flowers, it’s probably me. We started with Intrigue Designs. Then we grew into Intrigue Teaches, where we started sharing and educating through classes. And that led us to the Intrigue Experience Conference, which is definitely the biggest, and most elaborate of any of the events that we produce. So those are really the three main things, was Intrigue Designs, Intrigue Teaches, and Intrigue Experience.

– Very cool.

– That being said, there are other Intrigue things floating around that I’m also attached to.

– I love it. Let’s, do, do, do, do, do. Okay, here, here’s a good one I think. Lori wants to know, do you use veronica? I love the beautiful blue, purple colors.

– I do use veronica. In fact, when we were on the tour this year, I believe we were in Kansas City. And maybe I’ll post to my story. Yeah, I’ll post to my Instagram story today, I had this big bunch of veronica that I have never seen veronica like this. It was thicker than usual, it was long, it was so healthy and so beautiful. Yes, I do use veronica. And my favorite palette to play with is actually the blue tones, but I very rarely do the blue tones, because I find blues don’t play as well in marketing as my peaches, and my pinks, and my ivories, and my creams, and my corals.

– Yes, I agree with you, honestly. Because even when we post pictures, I could post tons of peach and coraly, and blush-colored anything, and everyone’s gonna be like drooling over it, and going insane. And then you post a really cool something or another that’s any other color, including blue, and it’s like, wah, wah.

– Wah wah.

– We say the same thing.

– Yeah, wah, wah. It’s so funny to me. It’s so true, though. All right, here is, oh, you’ll like this one. Ann says, “Love your tips. “By the way, Sarah, your hair looks great!”

– Thanks! You know it’s straight today. I usually curl it. I think I might like the straight look, I don’t know. Thanks, guys, appreciate it.

– All right, and then I have Ranee here, and she says “How does one get an awesome photographer “to take pictures of one’s high-end floral design “without it costing an astronomical fee?” Do you have any tips there?

– Okay, so first, it’s totally okay to pay your photographers. If they want flowers from us, we’re gonna pay them, right? Or we’re gonna want them to pay us, rather, if we’re gonna design for them. So don’t stress about investing in your photographers. I do say that when you can do some trade that’s definitely helpful. I know personally, I do a lot of work with Styled Shoots Across America, which this year I’m not doing quite as much, not ’cause we’re fighting. I just want everyone to know, I love Heather at Styled Shoots Across America. Just ’cause I’m not traveling as much this year. So there are some amazing opportunities to get involved with Styled Shoots Across America, and Heather who runs that movement, she actually pulls right out of the Intrigue Teaches Facebook group, and she’ll announce when she’s got opportunities right in that group. The great thing about that is, when you design for these shoots that are done through Styled Shoots Across America, I’ve said that too many times, when you design for these, there are 10 photographers, 15 photographers, sometimes 20 photographers all capturing your images. Which means you have all those different eyes. And all those eyes are different artists, right? So they’re seeing your images differently. So that’s definitely a great way, is getting involved in these shoots and of multiple photographers. When it comes to getting images of your actual wedding work, this is a long answer again, Yvonne, so stop me if you need to.

– No, no, it’s a complicated question. It has a lot of different variables. I like it, keep on going, we got time.

– Awesome, awesome. So when you wanna get images from photographers of your live wedding work, which I know a lot of us do, you really need to start building that relationship before the wedding. So don’t just shoot an email off that day, and be like, hey, Bob Brian Photography, I’m gonna need images of my work, okay? ‘Cause that sounds aggressive, and like you’re telling me what you want. Like you should pay me, it just feels weird. But if instead, you start as soon as you figure out who the photographer is, and I ask my brides who their photographer is. As soon as you have that name and that information, start building that relationship. Reach out to them. Hey, Bob Brian, I’m really excited we’re gonna be working on Yvonne’s wedding on June 6th, and I’m excited to see the way you photograph my flowers. And then if you’re doing something interesting, maybe you’re doing an installation, or maybe you’re doing a beautiful, like, Intrigue-style bouquet, tell them about that. Oh, the bouquet is going to be just really unique and different for this bride. It’s gonna absolutely photograph beautifully. Start that conversation. Start talking to them so that they know you’re excited about their work. And the same thing on social. So here’s a little tip that I actually don’t share very often. I guess I’m about to share this. So I have a piece of paper. This is not the paper, but I have a piece of paper, and I will write a list of all the individuals I wanna interact with each week, so when I have weddings come up, I make sure that every week leading up to that wedding, I’m interacting on their social media. It means I’m liking, commenting their pictures, I’m becoming part of their social circle, right? So that when it comes time for the wedding, they’re excited to share those images with me. Now, if you’re thinking that’s a lot of work to get some free images, you’re right, it is. The other option is, pay the fee, and get your images for the cost. And honestly, sometimes, I don’t have time, and it’s just worth it to me to pay the fee. I don’t feel like most photographers charge an astronomical fee. Most of them do charge a pretty standard fee, and they want a couple hundred dollars and that’s it. The other thing you can do is, you can bring a photographer on staff with you, here at Intrigue we have Clear Sky Images, who just happens to also be my daughter. So we had her go and take classes and learn how to photograph. And then it took her about six months to a year to really start photographing flowers the way we wanted to see them. But that was really helpful, because now I’m able to travel with a photographer that can shoot images that are right away ready for me to share on social and share in my portfolio.

– Yeah, I love it. That all sounds amazing. Yeah, no, I think building those relationships with the photographers is super key. And also not have the expectation that you’re always going to get them free. And think of it not as an expense, but as an investment in your future events that you want to be attracting.

– Absolutely.

– So now that we have our photography from all of our different workshops and things, it’s like literally changed our lives. It’s one of the reasons why you’re able to like have branded everything, and have a cohesive look. And that has been key. So I can’t even say how much it’s changed our lives having all of those photographs. It’s very, very important. All right. I feel like there’s a lot of questions. I haven’t scrolled all the way through, so we’re working our way.

– Go ahead.

– All right.

– I am all yours.

– Okay, LeLe Floral says, all my brides, oh, here, let me bring it up, here we go. “All my brides want”–

– I love this.

– “Cafe au lait dahlias for summer weddings. “How can you keep them fresh?”

– Sorry. I was distracted looking at like the pictures pop up.

– Yeah.

– Can you read that again?

– Isn’t that fun? Okay.

– It is fun.

– Yeah, LeLe Floral says, “All my brides want “Cafe au lait dahlias for summer weddings. “How can we keep them fresh?”

– Okay, so I’m now talking the wholesaler, and I wanna make sure I answer this well. I’m gonna give you my honest answer, and I may get in trouble. Here’s the thing, guys. I can’t keep them fresh. I can’t keep them alive. I look at cafe au lait, and they’re beautiful for about four hours, and then they decide they do not wanna be designed by me. So I don’t have a great answer for you. Cafe au lait is my one struggle. The only time I’ve been able to get them to work well for me, I felt like was pure luck. So Yvonne, do you have a better answer for that?

– This is one I wish I had Dave and Shelley on the show with me, because this is their expertise. What I can tell you is that we have a flower care guide. I’m bringing it up just to double check on what is in here. I’ll share the link for it, of course. And I do have a dahlia section on here.

– How awesome.

– So let me just share that real quick, I have a bunch of windows open now. Just give me a second, so that way I don’t end the broadcast by accident like I’ve done before. So if you go to, and then it’s flower-care-guide. So go to there, it’s a little form that you fill out, and then you can download our guide. And let me just bring that back up so I can read to you what it says. So I do know enough from doing the shows with Dave and Shelley, that like, the taking care of your flowers and processing them properly is key and huge to pretty much everything. So in our flower guide it says, using a hydrating solution intended for bulb flowers from your favorite brand, whatever that is, is very, very important. Make sure that you pre-cool your floral solution and flowers to the same temperature. Make sure that you remove all foliage from under the water line, and then cut your stems at an angle with a sharp, clean knife. And then it says, cut the dahlia stems, bleed proteins, amino acids, sugars and minerals, which are a breeding ground for bacteria. I don’t really know what that means. Cut dahlia stems that bleed– Yeah, does that make sense to anyone? Not a flower person, I don’t know. I’ll have to ask Dave and Shelley.

– I have an idea. This is kinda from April’s phone, but when it is dahlia season again, why don’t we work together, Yvonne, and I can do some fun videos about how to keep it alive, and I will figure it out myself as we are doing this. Because, honestly, this is an area that I need some more education, too, because I can keep any flower alive for long periods of time, except for the cafe au laits that I love so much.

– Yeah. They also said here, the hydrating solution needs to be changed more often with this flower as well to prolong the vase life. So if you guys are using hydrating solution, which I have feeling a lot of the wedding and event people do not. Do you, Sarah?

– I do.

– Okay, good.

– I have my favorite brands, I like my cross brands, and I definitely use solutions for everything. But I don’t change it regularly. So that could be part of it.

– Yeah.

– And it also could be anything.

– Yeah, yeah, it needs to be changed often, and then to store the dahlias, you should be storing them at 40 to 44 degrees. So that is the other piece of it. Can’t be too cold, and it can’t be hot.

– Well, that also could be the challenge I run into, because I’m a cool bot user. And the cool bots, they’ll say that they hover around 40, 45-ish, but they really don’t. They’re more like a 50, 55 range. So that could also be part of it.

– Yeah, yeah.

– That’s as cold as we get.

– Yep, yep, so we’ll put the link in the comments as well, so that way you guys can check it out. And of course I’ll include it in our show notes. And that way, you guys will have it there as well. But it goes over a lot of the different problem flowers that we hear about on our show, pretty much every month. So we talk about anemones and clematis, callas, dahlias, and gardenias, gloriosa lilies, ’cause those are some finicky flowers sometimes.

– I love gloriosa.

– Hellabores. And literally every single month I get at least a couple questions about hydrangea. It’s crazy to me. We talk about hydrangea constantly. Lily of the valley, peonies, phalaenopsis, roses, and stephanotis. So those are all in this amazing guide. And then of course there’s a kind of a general care and tips for handling.

– Awesome.

– Check it out.

– Well I’m glad you guys asked me a question I had no idea to answer.

– Yeah, yeah. No, it’s okay. There are some troublesome flowers out there. And so I just feel like the theme to everyone’s answers, like Dave and Shelley’s is all about the care and handling at the beginning, using the right types of solutions. Different flowers need different types of solutions, and just kind of knowing those and how they’re supposed to be handled. Again, it’s a whole other learning process that, again, I’m not very familiar with either, myself. But it’s all good. We’re all here learning together. All right, next question is from Krisanna. She says, “How can I get the blue apron “on your site, Sarah? “The blue offered doesn’t seem like the same pattern “you are wearing, and I want that bright blue!”

– Well–

– Love it.

– The blue was the very first to go. It is no longer available. However, I do happen to have the blue apron that was used in those promo photos, so if you would like it, send me a message, and I will make sure you get that particular one, and I will even sign it for you.

– Aww, I love it.

– There’s only one, so if anyone else wants it, you’re out of luck.

– Very cool. Thanks, Sarah. And thank you, Krisanna. All right, next question is from Cecilia. She says, “Do you have a recommendation “for a tripod to hold your phone when you record videos?”

– Yes, can I step off camera for a minute and get it?

– Yeah, yeah, and I have mine, too, that I love, that I wanna show everyone, too.

– Awesome, I’ll be back in a hot second, ’cause it’s right here.

– Okay. Yeah, while Sarah is grabbing hers, I do, so when I did the quick Instagram today I did not use anything, ’cause literally I was on for 30 seconds. But I have this really cool one that clips onto my desk. And then it has a USB that can plug into my computer. And it has a little round light that will sit behind the phone. So it holds the phone, it has a little light, and it makes everything really bright. There’s also some other cool, like smaller tripods that you can just hold, and it helps just having your phone on anything. I have one that like kind of looks like a gun almost, that you can kind of clip the phone too as well. So if you need to walk around, it makes everything more smooth. Sarah, do you have your tripod?

– No, they were filming on Friday and it’s set up on stubble. So I don’t have it. I forgot it’s not with me.

– Do you wanna describe what kind it is, and I’m gonna go grab mine real quick. Just hold on, it’s right behind me.

– Yeah, so what I use is, I believe it’s called a Gorilla. I have to double check that. But it is a tripod that has little, bendy, like octopus arms that you can bend around, I bend it around tree limbs, I bend it around lamp posts, so that you can attach it pretty much anywhere. And for me, personally, I like the angle that shoots down, ’cause I look skinnier, so I like to angle mine up higher, and allow it to shoot down. I also use it when I’m doing selfies or when I’m doing, like those big bunch pictures that I take, I don’t know if you guys saw the ones I did on the farm last week. They were insane. I will actually attach that tripod with these little, bendy arms to anything I can attach it to, so that it’s just in close enough area that I can reach around with one arm and hit the button as I’m holding my big bunches.

– Yeah, that’s very cool.

– I can share a link with you. And they’re not expensive. They’re like $14. I can share a link with you exactly what I use.

– Yeah, that’s very cool. And so here’s the one, ’cause I do work in an office setting. I’m not like, walking around. So here’s the light that I was telling you about. And then it has a clip as well. And it bends kind of like what Sarah was talking about, and then it clips. I’m trying to get it right in front. And then it clips to the desk. So I clip it down on my desk, I have the little light, and then the phone, and then I have to adjust my chair basically. And there’s a USB that just plugs into the computer and the light works. So it’s pretty cool if you’re gonna use it in the office setting, or like in your shop, or things like that. But definitely what Sarah’s talking about seems like more versatile if you’re like walking around, or wanting to use it at events and things like that.

– Yeah, yours is way different than mine. I will say that mine is also super, super hardy. Because like I’ve dropped it in a bucket and take it out and shaken it off. I’ve attached it to like fun flowers.

– Yeah.

– It’s definitely like, yours is definitely more for an office. The one I have is definitely more for like wherever you are in the world.

– Yeah. No, but I like those ones that have like the bendy arms. And so I remember being at one of my first conferences and I saw like a dude with his phone attached to like this tripod, and he had it bent so it was like over his shoulders, and he was just like walking around with it. So yeah, you can use it all different ways, and they’re just so versatile. And I do recommend using some sort of tripod whatever you’re doing. Whether it’s taking pictures and videos. It just really helps up your quality, and make it look more professional, honestly.

– Yeah, also there is another unit that I’ve tried using, but I need it to be less complicated. But it creates really beautiful video. Makes very smooth video. It’s called a Smooth-Q. The Smooth-Q, it’s like this apparatus you attach your phone to, and it gives you those really smooth, like cinematic movements. It is wonderful. I never use it, though, because it’s like an extra step, and clearly I need it to be super simple.

– Yeah, yeah, yeah. I’ve always wanted to get one of those, too. I just haven’t yet.

– Well, I’ll send you mine. It’s been used three times. It’s all yours.

– Very cool. So I’ve mentioned a few times that my daughter plays soccer. And I really wanna get this one camera, I’m trying to think of what it’s called. But you can clip something to you, and then you set up the video camera, and as you’re moving, which would be cool if you’re gonna maybe like speed it up and do like a time-lapse type of thing at an event, it will literally follow you. So you clip on this little clip thingy–

– Whoa.

– And the camera just follows you around without you having to move it.

– I need that.

– Which is really, really cool. Yeah, yeah, it’s pretty amazing. So one day.

– Look at that, we’re turning into techies.

– I know. I am a nerd!

– I am too, so we get along.

– Yeah. Big, big nerd. Well, I’ll try and take a couple more questions, and then we’re gonna have to wrap it up, ’cause it’s almost noon, I cannot believe it. Roxanne says, “Is the rose to peony video “an example of a time-lapse?”

– Yes, sort of. That was an actual video, it’s an actual video that you can download on our Intrigue Teaches site, that we just sped up. So it was a professional-grade video, that we just sped up. But yes, it is a demo of time-lapse. If you go back a few, I don’t know how far back, but you’ll see where it’s more basic. The lighting’s not perfect, and I’m just creating a design really, really fast. And in fact, I can share, I will share a basic time-lapse, a really easy time-lapse today on my feed, so you can see an updated version of what that is, and again, if you have any questions, feel free to ask on my feed.

– Very cool. I have a question from John Campbell. Might be in relation to Sarah Campbell, I’m not sure.

– I love all the Campbells. Hi, John!

– It says, “Hi, Sarah! “What was the moment that made you finally switch “from planning to floral designing? “As a planner who is quickly gaining a passion for florals, “this is something I’ve been weighing lately. “I’d love your insight.”

– Okay, so what made the switch? The story is actually long. It might need its own session just to tell the actual story. It’s also a very good story over a glass of wine or two. But really came down to knowing that, yes, I can do wedding planning. But the reality was I didn’t care if the bride made it to the church on time, if they had any food at the hall. I just wanted it to look beautiful. And when I realized that not only did I have the ability, that I could create these beautiful things, but also that’s where my priorities lied, you will always be more successful when you follow what is in your heart, when you follow your priorities. So because I always cared how beautiful everything was, and creating that environment, that’s something that you really can control as a florist, as an event designer. That isn’t something you have as much control over as a planner. A planner, some planners do design as well, but for the most part, most of the successful planners I see, they are primarily more on the logistics and the visual inspiration side, and not physically creating. So I also found that for me, I sold better when I was selling design than when I was selling planning. So opposed to seeling like a service, that, or selling a, music.

– Sorry.

– Now, I’m selling a physical creation. I’m selling something tangible. I found that the money was significantly better when I jumped into florals. And specifically into those large-scale wedding florals than it was when I was doing solely planning. And I say it over and over again, I’m a business person, a businesswoman first, business individual first, whatever you wanna call it. And I am a florist second. Because you first have to make sure you are running a sustainable, powerful business in order to do what you love. So look at the dollars. And I feel like sometimes in our industry it’s not popular to say that, it’s not popular to say I’m designing because I wanna make a profit. But at the end of the day, why are we working so hard, if not to build a profit? If we are a hobbyist, that’s totally fine, you can be a hobbyist. But that’s not my game. I’m in the floral business to build a life, and build income and revenue for my family. And there’s far more revenue in flowers than there was in planning for me.

– Love it, cheers to that. We are coming to the end. And so before everyone leaves, I thought we should talk about Intrigue Experience a little bit, and the special that you have for everyone. Hopefully you all have hung in there for this.

– So our Intrigue Experience Conference, and in fact, earlier when I was talking to Yvonne privately, I said I really feel like it was this conference that actually put me on the map when we first started hosting. It was four years ago when we first started hosting this conference. And the reason I launched the Intrigue Experience Conference was because I personally have this hunger for floral education. And I wanna learn from everyone. And I found that I couldn’t learn from everyone and still run my business at the same time. So I thought, wouldn’t it be amazing if we brought everyone together? For the first conference I looked at three, distinct design styles. I looked at the foraged gardeny style. I looked at the more modern, or what I call is that modern AAFD, very clean lines, streamlined style, and then of course a ballroom style, which is where I feel like I fit very well. And I pooled designers from these three, distinct areas, and really created this diverse gathering of florists, and planners, and designers all coming together. Not only that, I wanted an event that I could create that was curated around every corner. So I found that when I went to a conference, or an event with wedding planners everything was beautiful, and every piece was in its place, and you always knew what you were supposed to do, and then I would go to a floral workshop, ’cause I really wanted to learn florals, but flowers can be chaotic, and florists aren’t planners at the same time. So sometimes there’s a lot of chaos when it comes to workshops. And I wanted to create this event that was bigger than myself, and brought everyone together in both floral hands-on workshops and curated style design, and photography. So that’s what launched Intrigue Experience. And we just launched our 2019 Intrigue Experience a couple weeks ago, and it sold out in seven days. Which, isn’t that amazing? I’m so nervous–

– That’s amazing.

– Last year I was on tour all year. Normally we launch this conference a year out. I really didn’t have the time to put into the launch until January, once the tour ended, so we launched a conference two and a half, three months out, and I was shocked at the response we received. But I have something. I actually saved two of the seats.

– I’m so excited.

– So, I saved two of the seats just for us today, just for you and your customers at Mayesh. So only for your customers. We’re not do this anywhere else. I have two seats. They’re available for the first two individuals. The site will very much still say sold out. I’m not changing the site. You enter code Mayesh. And you will be able to have access to those seats. Not only that, you have access to it at the presale rate. So it is, I believe $1,000 below what is on there right now. So we only have two of those. So the first two of you to get to the Intrigue Experience site and put your order in, using that code, Mayesh, will have those two seats.

– Awesome. Thank you so much, Sarah.

– You’re welcome. It was kind of exciting. I can’t wait to see who the two people are.

– I know. If you guys are the two people, make sure you let us know. ‘Cause we wanna maybe follow you guys around. I wanna hear about everything. You guys can be our insiders, our Mayesh insiders.

– Yvonne right now, she’s like, wait a minute, I’m getting that seat before anyone else.

– Yeah, hold on real quick. Awesome. Well, Sarah, this has been amazing. I have a whole bunch of other questions, so I think we’ll be able to work together and get those answered, and I can add them to the blog, I’m sure.

– Absolutely.

– So if you all, yeah, I know. You’re amazing like that. So if you guys give me, us just a little bit of time, we’ll get those up on the blog show notes as well for you all. Anyone that’s also sent in questions that we didn’t have time to get to. So Sarah, you’ve been an amazing guest. Thank you so much for sharing everything, all your tips and marketing strategies. It was great. And as always, I love seeing your smiling face. So thank you so much.

– Thank you. Bye, guys!

– All right, have a great day. Bye, Sarah. All right, guys. I hope you enjoyed that as much as I did. That was awesome. Sarah is amazing. So much passion, and so much joy in what she does, right? You can just feel it from her. And that’s probably one of the most things that I love about her. And so that’s a wrap. A wrap on February 5th Mornings with Mayesh. I hope to see you guys. If you guys have more questions for Sarah, go ahead and put those in the comments now. In a couple of hours I’m gonna go through those and get those off to her and her team, that way we can answer them for you, and add them to our show notes on the blog post for this show. That’ll be up in a day or two. Give us a little bit of time. Our next show, as I mentioned in the beginning, is scheduled for February 19th, after Valentine’s Day. So on behalf of our Mayesh family, we wish you a very successful Valentine’s Day. And we hope that it is full of love, and full of successful business. Thank you for joining us, and I will see you soon. Have a rocking day. Bye guys!

Mornings with Mayesh: December 2018

Mornings with Mayesh: December 2018


On this episode of Mornings with Mayesh, Shelley, Dave, and Yvonne answer your questions about flower product availability, Valentine’s Day flowers, proteas, floral installations, and more. Save the date for January 22nd at 10 am EST for our next show and keep on sending in your floral questions!


Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:







  1. Flower show and tell:
    • Japanese sweet peas, leucadendron, Arena Red lisianthus, Butterfly ranunculus from California, Clooney Pompon Ranunculus,
    • Preserved gardenia colors
      • Cherry Blossom
      • Cranberry
      • Burgundy
    • New Flower 411 update from Mayesh’s purchasing department:
  2. Heidi: I would love to have a list of flowers and when they’re available throughout the year.  I totally know that it would be nearly impossible to have an accurate list of flower availability through a year, but something that’s pretty general I think would be really helpful.  Like ranunculus, for example, it seems like they’re pretty much a year-round bloom, but in May they tend to get kind of spotty with their availability. Some sort of reference guide that indicated what months to expect to have trouble getting them would be dreamy.  Or like peonies, I know they start showing up for real in March, but they seem to make cameos in November/December…. You know, that sort of thing. Is that possible?
    • We have a year-round availability list that you can download from our website but it’s meant more as a general reference guide. There are so many intricacies in growing flowers and timing harvests that you should always reach out to a Mayesh professional when planning your special events. This is especially true if the item is currently not in season locally in the USA. We import from all over the world when local crops are not available and there are usually other floral options. If a particular item is gapping or cost-prohibitive, we can offer alternative florals that work with your texture & color palette.
  3. **FAVORITE** — Tiffany: How do you determine what new product you will begin to incorporate into your yearly offerings? Do you trial new varieties and gauge them on various levels of stability?
    • Yes, absolutely. Our mission statement says it all. Providing the floral professional with the highest quality, most unusual products sourced from around the world. That being said, not only do we ourselves seek out the next cool thing, but our close relationship with our growers ensures they are showing us their next cool things too! We regularly receive,  vase test and photograph new varieties and try to get as much client feedback as possible, we want to know what you think! We also keep a very close eye on color trends in the industry.
  4. Jasmine: What are some other popular flowers to order other than roses for Valentine’s Day?
    • The world of flower fashion is constantly in flux and depending on your local demographics just about anything goes! Popular higher end flowers we sell for Valentine’s day include cymbidium & Phalaenopsis orchids, garden roses, blooming branches like quince & forsythia, and a staple of most modern floral design are hydrangeas. Many designers are moving away from typical fillers using interesting things like astrantia & astilbe. Being in Arizona we get a lot of “desert theme” floral design, so items like pincushion protea & succulents are high on our list here. It’s really about defining your own style, marketing your brand and staying true to yourself.
  5. Claudia: What’s the best time of the season to buy protea?
    • Proteas are grown in several countries and are available almost all year round depending on the variety you want. Their popularity has increased so much in the past few years that some varieties have become hard to get in large quantities, like the coveted King protea. King protea from California growers are readily available from March through May then the plants slow down and bloom randomly throughout the summer & fall. We also import King protea from places like South Africa and Australia. It’s important to talk to a Mayesh rep when planning an event with King proteas. Their availability can be intermittent as the plant produces blooms sporadically throughout the year. If there is a large demand that wipes out a growers crop, it can take many weeks for the next blooms to be ready for harvest.




  1. Mischa: What is the best way to hold the wet foam in a container to prevent it from falling apart once the flowers are put in the container? Is there a type of tape that is best to use more than another over of the foam.
    • Oasis green or clear waterproof floral tape works best. Also, make sure you are cutting your piece of foam to fit snugly in the container. You can also use chicken wire wedged in the top of the container. This will help eliminate using so much foam as well.
  2. Roger: Also, what is your advice on soaking oasis and mossing it for events that are a couple of hours away from the shop?  Should you soak and moss a few days prior and transport in totes?
    • You can soak oasis up to several days in advance as long as it is submerged. Are you referring to a mossed ball? Or moss on top of Oasis in an arrangement? The moss will help retain water but make sure you soak moss separately and then apply to Oasis or it will act like a sponge and leech the water out of the foam.  
  3. Tiffany: What are the hardiest flowers for installations, I.e. what flowers hold up best and longest either out of water or with limited water (picks). Can you recommend two for each season?
    • Roses, orchids, tropicals, carnations, alliums, hypericum, pods, preserved greens, and most foliages will hold up well. It’s probably easier to tell you what doesn’t: gerbs, some hydrangeas, lilies, tulips, freesia, dahlias, sweet peas and delicate flowers that don’t have a high water content.
    • Roses, tropicals, and carns can stay out of water for hours without showing signs of stress. Cooler to warmer months you can use most anything in the hardier category. Stay away from the delicate category in the heat of summer.



  1. **FAVORITE** Claudia: Would like to know care and handling for the king protea and the protea family.
    • Protea are also known as “sugar bushes” and true to their name they need to be hydrated in a floral food to replace their glucose. Plain water just won’t do with these! Protea are fairly easy to care for & can be stored in your floral cooler for a couple weeks. Their foliage has a natural tendency to brown after a while but they can simply be removed and this has no negative effect on the flower head.
  2. Barbara: How do you get different Protea to open up, when purchased closed, or do they continue to open up at all?
    • Proteas are slow openers and usually remain at ~ or close to the aperture at which they are cut. When selecting protea you should purchase them at the stage you want for your finished design. By the time they have any significant opening they seem to already be at the end of their lives.
  3. Can one of your experts talk about processing poinsettia for use in arrangements? They have milky sap, also do they last very long off the plant?
    • Poinsettias are in the euphorbia family hence the milky sap. I find cutting them the rinsing and wiping off the sap with a paper towel and then singeing with a lighter or match will help cauterize them. They actually hold up quite well in designs this way. Or you can purchase mini single 2” plants and use them intact in the design…soil and all. your client has a keepsake for afterward.
  4. Please talk about care tips for flowers for those of us who are in areas that can experience extremely cold temperatures outside. Also if there are flowers that are extremely vulnerable and flowers that are tolerable of the cold?
    • Having had to deliver in freezing cold temperatures and ice storms myself I find that boxing and wrapping in cellophane does the trick. It also can be a nice presentation if done well. Phalaenopsis plants (and most orchids) and poinsettias do not like extreme temperatures and wind can be a problem for them as well.



  1. April: I’m specializing in just a few avenues…bouquet subscription, holiday centerpieces and want to get into wedding flowers. I’m using Instagram, Facebook and a website but not getting much traffic or orders. I could use some marketing advice. How can I really capture attention and make people feel like they need a flower subscription?
  2. Homework!! Research and DM micro-influencers in your community to use in your 2019 Marketing Plan. Try it and let us know how it goes!


If you think of new questions, you can post them in the comments below!


Mornings with Mayesh: November 2018

Mornings with Mayesh: November 2018


On this episode of Mornings with Mayesh, Shelley, Dave, and Yvonne answer your questions about seasonal flowers, Amaryllis care, attaching flowers to stucco walls, design advice for this fall season, foam free installs, and more. Save the date for December 11th at 10 am EST for our next show and keep on sending in your floral questions!
Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:




  1. Shelley/Dave – can you guys select a few pretty flowers to show off?
  2. Carrie: Since its amaryllis season, wondering if there is any way to speed up getting them to open?
    • Opening time can vary depending on the stage they are cut but 3 to 5 days is usually sufficient. As with all flowers, planning your receipt time is crucial. There are quick dips and floral foods that can help stimulate flowers opening but nothing works better than having them arrive in plenty of time. Did you know that amaryllis, like many other bulb flowers, can be dry stored in a closed box in your cooler for up to a week or more? This means you can order them a week ahead and work them open with TLC.
    • for sure…get these in early
  3. Ruth: With Christmas approaching, I was wondering how long to allow for amaryllis to fully open.  Using them for a Dec. 22 wedding!
    1. I would plan for 3 to 5 days to fully open. Once they start getting close to the stage you want you can put them back in the cooler to slow their development. Best practice is to make a grid of tape over the opening of your buckets and try to get them standing straight up. Amaryllis are very top heavy when they open and have hollow stems that can crimp or crush from the weight of the open blooms if they are leaning at an angle. You might want to purchase some extra long hyacinth steaks or skinny bamboo poles to insert into the stems to give added vertical stability during hydration. The added sticks also make it easier to anchor the amaryllis stems into floral foam if you are using oasis blocks as your design medium.
  4. Carrie: What are good options for pinks and yellow florals in the December month when everything is red, green, white, gold and silver.
    • Most growers won’t let us cherry pick only the seasonal colors when we purchase for our inventory. Since we can’t just buy only the in-demand colors for a particular holiday, at any given time during the year we have a full selection of both seasonal & non-seasonal colors available. Some of my fave pink & yellow flowers in December are Anthurium, Calla lily, coxcomb celosia, cymbidium orchids, Hydrangea, sweet peas & Vanda orchids. For a comprehensive list visit
    • We also have a great yearly product guide download
  5. Sharron: Is it difficult to get tall Pampas Grass with large plumes in the month of December in California?
    • Although the season for fresh-cut Pampas grass has pretty much ended, we are now offering dried pampas grass. Those of you who have worked with dried Pampas grass know how it can shed so get your surface sealer ready!


  1. Melissa: Since dried flowers and greens are coming back in style, do you have any tips for handling them? I feel limited with their inflexibility and worry if I pair them with fresh flowers in a water source the stems will get soggy and fall out of place.
    • Yeah, so with dried flowers, obviously, they’re dried, they don’t have any moisture in them. So when you’re using them in fresh flower arrangements, you want to create an artificial stem for them by picking and wiring and taping them. You cannot put glycerin-dyed product, glycerin dried or dyed product in water. It’s very important because the dye will leech off of it. You don’t want it getting on anyone’s dress or clothing, or tabletops. Make sure you wire it and tape it, taping will seal it. If you use wire, make sure you’re using always taped wire, ’cause wire can rust in the water. Or use a wooden cowipick, the little wooden plant picks with little wire on it, and you can tape it on.
  2. Roger: I love working with unique floral and doing things a bit out of the box in regards to fresh arrangements. I tend to forage the landscape for bits of added interest to those creations. My question is, when using fresh sprigs of berries, ie, beauty berries, liriope, bittersweet, holly, etc,, what is the best way to keep the berries from falling off the stems. besides not brushing up against them?
    • The trick is harvesting at the right time. If berries ripen too far on the stem they don’t hold well. This gives you a limited window for any given plant. Foraged items are also subject to frost damage and other environmental conditions that can affect their stability. If possible, try targeting the hardier plants like rose hips, hypericum, liquid amber, blue viburnum, callicarpa, and tallow berry. These tend to be pretty sturdy landscaping plants that have berries that hold better.



  1. Holli: How do you attach flowers to a stucco wall? Some venues have a stucco wall for the “altar” and I have seen photos of large installations on the wall.
    • First get permission at any venue you are not used to working with. Never use nails. I find using removable sticky tabs, Command slate springs or outdoor hooks work fairly well for hanging greenery or lighter product. There are a lot of damage free hooks on the market. Also, check to see if the venue already has nails or hooks in place. For heavier objects, you can create your own trellis or stand to place in front of the wall to attach to
  2. @themrsbacia: Also, you can give some tips for home decorating (autumn/Thanksgiving). I think it will be interesting for people.
    • Sure! I think using gourds as vessels instead of just pumpkins makes for a unique design. Drieds are very popular again and incorporating those with fresh gives a very textured look for fall. Carve out apples for votives or cider. Make garlands out of autumn leaves for the table. Using a clean neutral palette is modern-whites, creams, and greens or go funky with Thanksgiving  “Pinks” muddy mauvey tones instead of the typical orangey fall colors. Wheat placed in wine bottles makes a very clean understated look as well.
  3. Barbara: When working with floral foam, specific flowers are more challenging. What is the best method of insertion for Amaryllis, Calla Lilies and Hydrangea? I have generally pre-inserted a stem so that the soft or hallow stems to do not get clogged, but is there a better, newer method?
    • Pre-inserting a stem to create a hole is a tried and true method. Just make sure your stem is secure and not wobbly and the oasis is soaked. It helps with Amaryllis to insert the hollow stem with the cut stem of another flower ( tuberose works great for this) and then using oasis floral tape around the base to keep it from splitting or in the case of callas from curling. I find using chicken wire and cutting it open helps support these heavier stems as well.
  4. Barbara: Working with Amaryllis, I have used wooden and plastic dowels with wet cotton pushed up to the base of the hollowed stem, near the flower head, which is better, wood dowel or plastic?
    • Either medium is great to add support, I like that you add wet cotton to keep some moisture and also prevent the dowels from puncturing the stem walls.

  5. Courtney: How to do arch installations foam free.




  1. J E: How can I become a retail seller and how to buy from wholesalers?
    • Depending on your state and country: First, you must apply for a business license, usually post your intent in the local newspaper and then obtain a seller’s permit. Once you have established those two things you should also start your social media presence and portfolio. We like to see that a business is, in fact, a floral related business when registering with us. After that, you can simply go to our website and register and submit your resale license.




  1. Erica: Do we need to build an email list?
    • Girl, yes, you need an email list! You need some way to track all of the incoming leads that you have, and build a database, so that way you can communicate with people. And I’m not sure what part of the business you’re in, but if you’re a retailer, like a traditional retailer, and sales everyday types of things, you want to be able to communicate. And email is not dead, it’s still very important. But as you’re building an email address, then think about other ways that people like to communicate, whether that’s messaging, or through the social media type of thing. But always collect email addresses, always create that list, so that way you can reach out to people. Because it does help. And even with, for example, our things that we do, people want to know about all the different specials, so, and our new blog posts, they can subscribe to that, we send out the newsletters, all the great content, if we create a new download, we need to make sure that people know about that. So, and the same goes for your businesses as well.
  2. Claudia: Have you set up the new list of workshops for the 2019 year yet?
    • Yes, we have and the workshop details will be published on this coming Monday. Stay tuned for more details, but in the meantime, here are the cities and dates that we have planned:
      • January 14-15: San Diego, CA
      • May 20-21: Nashville, TN
      • August 12-13: Austin, TX
      • November 11-12: Columbus, OH

Mornings with Mayesh: October 2018

Mornings with Mayesh: October 2018

During October’s Mornings with Mayesh, Yvonne, Shelley, and Dave cover some great florist generated questions. They started the morning with Shelley and Dave talking about some of the beautiful fall flowers that are currently available. Afterward, they answered some audience questions that range from flower schools, cake flowers, wire services, increasing your marketing ROI & more. Enjoy and be sure to mark your calendars for November 20th to catch the next show. Also, don’t forget to comment with your new questions!


Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:







  • Link to latest flower 411:
  • From IG: What are some great fall flowers available now? So many to choose from, lets do these in show & tell?
  • From IG: When do Christmas greens arrive?
    • We already have some Christmas greens available and are taking pre-books now… hint, hint! We have Port Orford cedar, Douglas & Noble fir & Mixed boxes in stock and If you need to do your Christmas photo shoots & mockups, give us a call and we can bring more in for you.



  • From Huntress Florals: Can you give recommendations for great floral schools? I’ve taken courses at the market with American School of Floral Design, and with Shelly, as well as Phil Rulloda up in OC. I’m interested in credible International programs as well!
    • I found this great download on SAF’s website that lists all of the floriculture schools in the US.
    • But how do you know which ones are the best? Well, this kind of question is tough to answer because it is subjective. I think it all depends on what you want to learn and how you like to learn. That is when Facebook pages, groups, and Google reviews come in handy.
    • Dave: Most states have florists associations with extended learning programs but I would check local community colleges for classes. I found a bunch by googling local floral design schools, some accredited and others informal.
    • Shelley: This industry is a tough one for training, I find taking some basic classes at an adult continuing education classes are helpful. I know we have a couple of schools we work with here. Texas A&M University has a great floral program and you can get a degree in floriculture. But even having proper training and a degree will not always guarantee you a job or work. Most florists I have worked out really want to see how many years experience you have under your belt. Really nothing beats interning and learning hands-on as you go with more experienced floral designers. This takes many years and doesn’t happen overnight.
  • IG: How do you place flowers on a cake safely?
    • Shelley: This seems to get folks fired up a bit because of pesticides. And yes, it is a valid concern but in all my years of decorating cakes, I never treated the flowers with anything special. Just made sure they were clean and prepped. It is almost impossible to arrange on a cake and not have the flowers touch the icing. I know people who like to lay wax paper down or use a special oasis holder. There are little plastic holders but then they make decorating the cake awkward. 95% on the couples I have worked with have never expressed concern about the flowers being on their cakes.  I have decorated hundreds and the couple’s who are concerned will usually ask for organic flowers or herbs or a design that is around the cake not on it.
    • Because there are more local and organic growers these days the option of organic pesticide-free flowers should be a little easier to come by,  but it is not always possible. Most caterers will cut away the decorated part anyway because the slices are not aesthetically pleasing or the couple uses the bridal cake as a showpiece only and then a separate sheet cake is sliced and served.  I have never had or even heard of anyone getting sick from eating flowers on a cake. You are not consuming the flowers after all.
    • If you are an eco-friendly florist try suggesting fresh herbs or locally grown flowers if you bride seems concerned.
    • Hydroponically grown flowers could make a better choice for cake flowers as well.



  • IG: What are the best wire services?
    • Again, I freaking love social sites like Facebook because you can learn so much from others.
      • Florists of Facebook group had 78 comments to a similar question.
        • If you go through everyone’s opinion the main theme is that you shouldn’t use a wire service.
        • Wire services came to be because for Google, people would go to their local florist to order flowers for someone that not local. Wire services provided a way to get those orders filled and also a way to get the payment squared away. Today, many people will just jump on the internet and find a florist in the area of the person they are ordering flowers for. It is so much easier.
        • However, I did see a few advocate that wire services can be beneficial for newer retail shops depending on your demographics. You just need to be sure to do your due diligence and crunch those number to make sure it is a good fit for you.
        • I’m not sure what makes a wire service the best, but I did read in the FB group comments that people had some good things to say about Teleflora, B Brooks and Flower Shop Network:
        • A side comment is that others mentioned Bloomnation. They are NOT a wire service. I like to think of them like an Etsy for flowers that can also help provide things like a website and POS.
        • Shelley: Yes, I am completely in agreement that a wire service is not necessary and can cost a florist thousands of dollars in fees. BBrooks and Bloom Nation are great alternatives. I have belonged to both. BBrooks if you not familiar with is a community of upscale and niche florists and you must be asked or invited to join or you can submit your work for approval and be juried in. They are more exclusive in nature, so that the types of florists they are recommending are all consistently high quality and elegant. While this may sound a little snobbish it does give you a great database of tried and true upscale shops to choose from. I was on the pilot program with Bloom Nation and they essentially were trying to do the same thing but I think they have found it more profitable to have a more general base of florists. Bloom Nation pays you right away for an order less 20% Bbrooks sends you a monthly bill and the fees are very affordable.
  • IG: How to get re-orders? How do you get someone who ordered flowers online to order again?
    • Shelley: Provide excellent customer service and do an outstanding job on their order! Really, I am all about customer service…don’t just be an order taker. Things, like taking a picture of your design and sending it after the delivery, was made, a special thank you note, a small coupon off their next order or waive the delivery charge are some customer incentives.  
    • Once a customer finds a great florist they will usually come right back for future orders. It’s a lot like finding the perfect hair stylist…not always easy for people. Just know that not all customers send flowers’s more like once or twice a year. I would invite them to your shop or host an open house to get them in the door as well.
    • Yvonne: Make sure you are collecting some information about your customers that will allow you to market to them. Name, phone number, email addresses are important, but make sure you take note of special dates and personal tastes so that you can have better conversations with them via phone/text, email, direct mail, etc. In addition, I’ve seen florists offer subscription services. So if someone is buying flowers for their partner’s birthday, what a great opportunity to upsell to make them look like superheroes and for you to have guaranteed sales throughout the year.



  • IG: How do I get more clients from my marketing efforts?
    • I’m a true believer in inbound marketing!!
    • At the very high level, you need to make sure you are creating content that allows people to fall in love with you before they even meet you. You want to fill your sales funnel and push them through that funnel.
    • You need to ensure that your marketing has strong CTA’s (calls-to-action). What do you want them to do, where do you want them to go to get more information, etc. and then ask them to do that.
    • Have a top-notch website that is user-friendly and provides value to your potential customers and customers. Make sure you have somewhere for them to go on your website to connect with you, subscribe to you, get more information from you, etc.
    • Then make sure you collect their information – name, email, etc.
    • After your contacts trust you enough with some of their information, be sure you nurture that relationship by offering more valuable content and stay in touch with them via email.
    • Be sure to occasionally ask for the sale. “Are you ready to order your flowers? Awesome, you can do so here” and send them to your site to order your flowers.
    • This will get you not just more clients, but more of the right kind of clients so that you can spend your extremely valuable time with the right people.


Love Mornings with Mayesh? Leave a comment letting us know what you enjoyed most! Also, don’t forget to post your questions for next month’s show. See you soon!

Mornings with Mayesh: Instagram, Facebook & Website Tips

Mornings with Mayesh: Instagram Tips

Join me for a special edition of Mornings with Mayesh. With the help of some brave volunteers, I reviewed a select group of Instagram, website, and Facebook pages. If you’ve been looking for real-life social media examples for florists and floral businesses, then you don’t want to miss this replay.

Scroll down for simple tips & tricks to increase your Instagram, Facebook and website game!
Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:






  • Tracy: Instagram: 
    • Include where you are located in the description.
    • You have the email button, which is great!
    • You are using a combination of geo special hashtags and regular hashtags – good job!
    • I see a couple of responses to the comments on your posts. Try to respond a bit more to engage with your followers.
    • I don’t see any Story highlights
      1. are you using stories?
      2. maybe try creating stories around your events and use the highlights to show off your favorite work or work that you think will speak to your future potential clients.
  • Erica: Website:
    • Hi Erica, here are a few things that stick out.
      • Where are you located? I can’t find any indication on where you are at and this hurts your SEO
      • Your homepage is beautiful, but with the white draping at the backdrop for some of your white text, it makes reading your text quickly really difficult.
      • It looks like this is a new website that you are working on, but adding some content will be beneficial. Having a blog that you can write a summary of your events and post some pictures while including the details of where the event took place is a great way to help your SEO and help people find y our business.
      • The request quote page doesn’t have a form.

Chelsea: Instagram: 

  • Your link is for a Facebook page, not your own website. I think you are losing out on potential traffic to your site. Plus, you do not own Facebook or IG … they could disappear tomorrow and so would your digital footprint. It is essential for businesses to have a website. How do people order your amazing wreaths? Make it easy for them.
  • I like that you provide all of the business button options – call, email, and directions. However, is the directions button going to your business? It appears that it is going to the city in which you are located. So I would be sure to update that immediately either with the correct address or remove that option.
  • As with the previous review, are you using stories??
    Here’s a link to our blog about why you should be using stories and some tips to get started:

    2. This article is back from April and it was reported that there were 300 million daily active users for Instagram stories. I was able to find a report that says that in June, that number had already jumped to 400 million daily active users. If you are not on the Story train, jump up on it today!


  • Jennifer: Instagram:
    • You business IG page is great will all of the bio page features being used. By the way, it will take about a day and a half for me to drive there by car according to Google Maps!
    • Love your IG stories and highlights – this is such a great way to show off your business and have it been front and center when people head to your page.
    • You are also using a great combination of hashtags and reply to comments
    • You are doing so much right and are a great example for some of you who may be struggling with their IG game.
    • I think if you wanted to try to elevate your game a little more here are a couple of thoughts:
      1. Think of ways to engage with your audience a bit more with your regular posts. Instead of just a statement, ask a question like “what is your favorite flower in this design?” or “what you do think about what we found at the market today?”.
      2. Be sure to use call-to-actions in your stories, by adding a link and having them to “swipe up” to head to your website.
      3. And have you thought about having a landing page on your website just for IG. This is something that I plan on working on for Mayesh. I’ve seen others use programs like LinkTree, but you can easily create a page on your own website – people can still get to your article on  SD Voyager, but can also get to other vital places on the web for your biz.
  • Whitney: Instagram:
    • You’ve got all of the basics covered and you are using a business page – yay!
      1. Like Top of the Hill Decor, you have a directions button, but not a specific address, so I would turn that off or update it so there is a full address.
      2. For your email address, and I’ve seen this with a few others as well if you have a website that means you have a domain. I suggest having your email address with your domain, e.g. instead of using a Gmail account.
    • I like that you are asking people to head on over to your blog or website – keep on filling that funnel!
    • Think about having a collection of photos from the same event or within a certain color palette when creating your individual posts. It might help make a bigger impact when people scroll through your page. For example, grouping your daffodil pictures or your floral jewelry images.
  • Tracy:
    • From Tracy: I just found your “Mornings with Mayesh” today and want to thank you so much! I love learning and love listening to all the advice from fellow florists! I am a “one-man show” wedding flower business in Chehalis, WA… I have more work than I can handle so I’m not really needing more business but just want to make sure my Instagram/Facebook, etc look professional.. My question is regarding Instagram… I am fairly new to it (about a year) and feel like I’m using the right hashtags but can’t seem to get a respectable amount of followers! 🙂 Any suggestions?
    • Bravo Tracy with your success – that is great! And don’t forget that having a great number of followers is lovely, that isn’t the point. You want to be able to connect with your community, develop relationships which in turn earns you trust, and generate leads for your business.
    • For your IG:
      1. Like a few of the others, nix the directions button if you aren’t using your full address.
    • Facebook:
      1. You have a few videos up, but no call to action within the video itself, just in the video description. For more video content, consider creating short highlight videos for each of your events.
      2. I highly recommend video and engaging content for Facebook and Instagram.
    • Website:
      1. Where’s your blog? Again, you don’t own Facebook or Instagram so you need a place that you can post your content to as well. If you are focused on brides, having a blog will also help build up your SEO so that the right brides find you. Also, when you post to Facebook about a wedding then you can link over to a blog post about it to keep driving people to your site.
      2. Having a contact form is great, but if you are in the wedding business I suggest creating a form that you can use to better qualify your contact from the start. Maybe you do that after the initial contact, but I think you could ask more here.
      3. From a purely aesthetic feel, I think your website could use a little facelift. I would consider moving to a different platform. For small businesses, I like SquareSpace. It is affordable, pretty easy to use to add your own content, and they have lots of modern layouts to choose from.
  • Ann: Instagram: Annabellsgardenfloraldesign
    • My first piece of advice for you, Ann, is to post more consistently and by that, I mean at least once per day.
    • Try using some more geo-specific hashtags like #oregoncityflorist, #portlandsflorist #pacificnwwedding.
    • I see a graphic that looks like it was created for something else, not IG. When promoting something, try to create a graphic that fits the requirements for the platform and make sure that it isn’t fuzzy. If you need some help to DIY graphics, check out Canva. It’s a site that I use all of the time and comes with tons of layouts.
  • Gaye: Instagram & website:
    • Instagram – here are 3 things that I would change:
      1. I don’t see any business features, so if you haven’t already I would switch that over. You just need a Facebook business page before you make the switch.
      2. Next, as with a few of the others, I would add where your business is located in the description.
      3. Incorporate Stories into your social media marketing mix.
    • Website:
      1. Overall, I think the site has a great look and is easy to navigate. Yay!
      2. In the little about section on the homepage, I would add where you are located. I see that you have the info at the very bottom, but it might be helpful here.
      3. I like your contact page that is qualifying your brides right from the start.
      4. Something that I love seeing on websites is a great branding video that allows your potential clients to get to know you in a powerful way.
      5. For my last piece of advice … you know what I’m going to say, right?? Where’s your blog? You could easily turn each of your wedding highlights into a blog post adding some content to a short summary to beef up your SEO.



Mornings With Mayesh: September 2018

Mornings with Mayesh: September 2018

In September’s Mornings with Mayesh, Shelley, Dave & Yvonne cover a wide array of floral questions. They started the morning with Shelley and Dave talking about some of the beautiful products that are currently available. Afterward, they answered some audience questions that range from preservatives for flowers and flower coolers to wedding flower packages & more. Yvonne rounded out the show by announcing our 2019 Mayesh Design Star, Shean Strong!! Be sure to watch until the end to get to know Shean in a quick Q & A — it’s going to an amazing 2019!

Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:






  • Shelley/Dave – can you guys select a few pretty flowers to show off?
  • From Gaye: Where can we find a list of what flowers are available in each month?
  • From Suzanne:  I’m having more and more calls for gold roses. Would like more info on varieties and best farms that have long time availability.
    • There are only a few varieties of gold roses being grown and since they are treated as a “seasonal fall color” most rose growers don’t have a lot of real estate planted in this palette. There are a few great gold varieties in varying gradients of color saturation such as Cappuccino, Caramel Antike, Camel, Combo, Golden Mustard & Toffee BUT these are all difficult to get in big quantities especially for large events. That being said, we may need to piecemeal your orders together using different varieties from different sources. Best advice is to be flexible and supplement by offsetting your arrangements with other flowers in your seasonal color.



  • From Joy: How do you keep the snapdragons from bending?
    • Snapdragons are both phototropic (this means they will bend towards a light source) and geotropic (meaning they want to bend away from the center of gravity in the earth). you can get them to straighten by using your favorite flower food, hydrating them standing up as straight as possible in a bucket placed directly under a light source.
    • You can also tip them out. Also, do not lay them down while working with them …as Dave says keep them upright.
  • From Hannah: What flower preservatives do you recommend?
    • Floralife & Chrysal are just a couple of big brand names that work great. It is also very important to know your type of flower. Most cut annuals and foliages can take any brand of standard floral solution BUT most perennial or bulb flowers need a floral solution intended to replace the hormones they are no longer receiving from their bulbs. Properly nourished flowers not only last longer but also look better.
  • From Darlene:  Is there a secret to keeping stock fresh?
    • Changing your water daily & re-cutting stems will keep stock fresher longer. Most floral foods already have a fungicide in them already BUT You can add a couple drops of bleach to help with problem flowers like stock. Bacteria on flower stems can grow out of control in buckets & will cause shorter flower life & foul smelling water. It is good practice to frequently change your floral solution & re-cut ALL flowers to keep bacteria levels down.
  • From Valerie: Is warm water better for most flowers when processing would you say? Than colder?
    • Best practice is always to process flowers in a hydrating solution with a temperature as close to your flowers as possible. The safest way is to prepare your buckets of floral solution the day before and keep them overnight in your cooler. When you receive your flowers, allow them to chill in your cooler for an hour or two before processing them. This way the floral solution & the flowers are at roughly the same temperature. This will cause the least amount of stress on your flowers. Conversely, you can do the same at room temperature instead BUT the cold on cold method is my favorite. When processing roses, you can leave them in their cardboard sleeves from a few hours UP TO overnight in the floral solution after cutting them. This ensures the neck of the stem just under the flower head hydrates properly, firms up & prevents head droop. If your intention is to open your flowers quickly, try using a product like Chrysal easy dip which is a  quick hydrating solution intended to speed the uptake of hydrating solutions.
  • From Valerie: Does Mayesh have any blog post or cheat sheet on processing? If not would be a great resource much like your flower availability pdf?
    • Here is some great information I got from a friend at Chrysal USA a couple years ago:
      • Never use softened water. The high salt content is deadly to flowers and potted plants
      • For some blooms, bottled or distilled water (not tap water) is the best choice.
      • Tap water contains minerals and salts that may cause “pepper spots” on petals
      • Avoid dripping on petals. Allow moisture to evaporate before placing blooms in cooler. Even a microlayer of condensation is sufficient for Botrytis spores to start germinating.
      • Keep cooler floors clean and dry. This is another place botrytis can occur and spread.
      • Clean water, clean containers, clean tools are important when preparing solutions.
      • Follow label mixing instructions–Don’t guess about the dose.
      • Under-dosing gives poor results (bacteria soup) which wastes time & money.
      • Hydration formulas are sugar-free because sugar introduced too early in the system sometimes slows uptake of solution later and can stimulate premature leaf yellowing.
      • Research proves that if only one segment of the chain uses some post-harvest treatment, longevity is still better than using no treatments at all.
      • Most cut flowers are happiest stored between 34 – 38F with the exception of tropical flowers and orchids.
      • For more information and some specific flower examples please stay tuned for our upcoming flower care guide.



  • From Eva: I always have customers ask for my wedding packages with pricing but I have been hesitant to provide that since each individual wedding is so unique. What information can I give to a client at the very beginning that gives them an idea of my pricing?
    • Aside from listing your “minimum” on your website, it’s usually a good Idea to have a questionnaire on your website that can help you find out a little more about your bride. Once you move forward to the phone interview you can decide if they are a right fit for you. I addressed this pretty well in our last Mornings with Mayesh if you want to go back and take a look at my thoughts on pricing.
    • I find that most customers who are looking for “packages” are usually more interested in price than design or your work. Back in the day, a few florists would offer a bridal bouquet, a few bridesmaids bouquets and a set number of bouts and corsages for a one budget price. You can handle this a couple of ways. Either by simply saying that you do not offer packages because your work is bespoke and tailored to each bride’S individual aesthetic or simply offer your own unique version of a package with certain guidelines in mind. “I will do this, with seasonal flowers, in your color palette and in this look for X amount of dollars.” Give them 2-3 options. If you want to work with smaller budget brides and/or possibly farm that out to one of your JR designers. Then they could order items a la carte to fit their needs. And be somewhat firm about your guidelines.  I find that most brides end up busting out of the” package mode” of thinking once they sit down and interview with you and find out what a talented creative you are.
  • From Joanne: I met a designer who is selling her cooler for $1800. The dimensions are 8×8 and it’s a walk in. However, I was told I could purchase a CoolBot and that would work just as well. What are your thoughts?
    • We have a lot of customers who use the CoolBot and I have heard nothing but good things about the system. They are cost effective and apparently better for the environment as that don’t use the same forced cooling than traditional coolers use. It basically attaches to any air conditioner. There are some downsides. For example, they take longer to cool and are not as effective if you open the door to your insulated room more than 6 times per hour. You can find out more about them on the company’s website
  • From Hannah: If you are just starting out with a studio doing flowers for events- at what point do you recommend getting a commercial refrigerator?
    • Hi Hannah, I think it’s always a good idea to get a cooler or possibly a CoolBot (see above) right when you start your business. It should be part of the investment that you make when beginning your business. You can start smaller with a commercial beverage cooler if you can’t afford to go all out but it is important to properly store your flowers. Having a cooler really alleviates the stress of trying to keep your flowers cool during our hottest months of the year. Not sure where you are located but It used to be here in California most florists could get away without one, but as we are seeing more climate change and hotter than ever temperatures year round… it’s a sound investment. I do like the CoolBot because it is more eco-friendly than running a traditional cooler. You have to build an insulated room but I think the cost is less than a traditional cooler, which isn’t always easy to find.




Announce the 2019 Mayesh Design Star! Watch the segment here.

Mornings with Mayesh: August 2018

Mornings with Mayesh: August 2018

In August’s Mornings with Mayesh, Yvonne and Shelley cover a wide array of floral questions. They started the morning with Shelley talking about some of the great products that are available including the VIP rose called Westminster Abbey. Afterwards they answered some great audience questions that range from garden roses & how to care for them, how to handle ethylene gas sensitive flowers, to what is the best way to clean up quickly after a large installation, how ordering works for shipping customers, and taking on work that doesn’t really match your brand. It was a show packed full of great information, so be sure to watch the replay! 


Here is the podcast replay, video, and show notes:



  • From Bridget: What type of product is local in Miami?
    • Yvonne: Here’s a list of some of the local product that Miami gets in throughout the year:
      False Aralia
      Begonia leaves
      Poke Weed
      Sugar Cane Grass
      Everglades Grass



  • From Kirsten on IG: Can you talk about the different kinds of garden roses, not just David Austin, and how to prepare them for arrangements and how long they last?
    • From Shelley: whether you are cutting them from your own garden or getting them from us or a local rose grower you will need to first remove the packaging and lower leaves. My rule of thumb is ¾ leaves removed ¼ left on. Use any damaged leaves or guard petals to encourage roses to open place in tepid or room temperature water. Use flower nutrients, changethe water every 24-48 hours and keep away from direct light and heat. Allow roses to open fully for your event. Super fresh, tight roses will take 3-5 days to open. Local garden roses will last about a week depending on variety, but some South American varieties will last 2 weeks.
  • Evelyn: Any recommendations on how to keep flowers in cooler fresh. Having problems with Snapdragons especially. I keep them separated from carnations. 
    • From Shelley: Snaps can be sensitive to ethelyne gas so make sure your cooler is clean and filtering properly. Make sure you are cutting with a sharp knife at a 45-degree angle. Keep water cool and clean and use floral preservative. I find sometimes they do well out of the cooler if it is not too hot. You have tip them out as well if they have droopy tips. Generally, they are a long lasting flower.
  • From Desiree: Do most people find astilbe to be a flower that does not last in bouquets because I do. I urge clients to find another flower because I don’t want to water tube and add more weight to an already cumbersome bouquet. Such a beautiful bloom but how can we get past the browning tips and them looking pretty sad mid wedding day?
    • From Shelley: Yes, Astilbe is not known for its longevity that is why it’s best to make sure to buy it in season and especially when it’s offered locally. Astilbe flowers last longer, up to 2 weeks rather than 2 to 4 if placed in hot water first, allowed to cool down and then placed in the cooler. It is a technique that works well with hellebores too.



  • From Brandi: I never had problems with boutonnières previously, but more recently, they’re been super wilty within a few hours of the bridal party wearing them. Super embarrassing and not a look we would like to have. The stems are exposed, however, they are in water right up until they’re being worn. Help?!
    • From Shelley: Well then the question would be what kind of flowers are you using? How are you storing them? You say you are exposing the stems so I am assuming you are doing more of a wild flower look? Certain flowers still need to be wired. Using crowning glory will help with this. ( I will address further on the show)
  • From Texanna: How do you have beautiful events outdoors with flowers in this heat? What about potted Orchids and Orchids in general and Roses?
    • From Shelley: It is a challenge isn’t it!? Definitely using orchids, plants and heartier flowers like tropicals help. Also, for the first time, we are really seeing a shift in our climate and the environmental changes are really starting to impact us here in Southern California where you could count on really nice outdoor weather year round. It has already started impacting our florists business here. Using a base of silk flowers and then adding in fresh flowers is another option to help combat the heat as well. Remember when working outdoors to wear a hat and gloves and to protect yourself from the heat. It’s really easy to forget how hot it can get when you are setting up outside.
  • Do you all do seminars on arranging?
    • Yvonne: We have some great resources for learning more about flower arranging. First, is our video library that everyone should check out. We have over 400 videos that cover a wide range of design topics and general videos about flowers, care & handling. Typically, we have 1 design video per month that we publish. In addition to our videos, we offer live educational events as well. Currently, we have 1 flower workshop left for the year, happening in Salt Lake City in November. Visit our website for more information. Also, if you want to stay in the know about all of our news & events, then be sure to sign up to receive our emails.
  • Melissa: What is the best way you’ve found to clean up quickly and efficiently at a venue after a big install?
    • From Shelley: A large team is essential and if you can’t afford that get yourself some interns or volunteers and get really organized. Make sure you have your own trash cans, bags, brooms dustpans, carts, dollies, boxes buckets etc…so that you are not at the mercy of the venue and that you don’t have to ask to borrow ANYTHING, Make sure you have a well-stocked toolkit. Give yourself time. Familiarize yourself with each venue you work at and learn how long it takes at each venue and how many people you need. Don’t wing it each time. Get a crew you can trust.



  • IG: As a new florist, I would like for you to walk through the steps of ordering for the first time and things I should know about delivery. I received a related question from Evelyn: How can we arrange ordering from you and getting the best price on shipping?
    • Yvonne: Once you register your business and we get your account set up, you will be assigned your very own sales rep to walk you through all the steps on ordering and shipping. We have 2 different shipping teams. In general, our Miami shipping division handles the East part of the country and our LA shipping team handles the West side. We can work on quoting you costs for flowers including shipping/packing charges. Shipping costs are calculated by actual weight and dimensions of the boxes so each order may differ as far as shipping goes depending on the size of the order. We ship a few different methods, FedEx priority overnight and Air Cargo (Delta/Southwest/United/American) to your nearest airport. Shipping via airlines for orders over 100 lbs. can be significant savings if you are able to go and pick up from the airport. Picking up cargo from the airport is super easy! We will give you the address to the cargo station as to where you will need to go. It’s usually in a separate area from the airport so you don’t have to interface with airport traffic.
  • Melissa: How do you reconcile specific floral work you’ve been asked to complete that is not up to par with your personal taste?
    • From Shelley: Ah this is always a toughie. When your new and starting out it is always difficult to turn down ANY business. You will do designs that you don’t love and work you will not want to even photograph. It’s very hard, on the one hand, you need to make a living and on the other, you feel that you are an artist and your artistic integrity is at stake. If it is a bridal client it’s a good idea to have a questionnaire on your website that can help you vet your clients and you can gently refer them out to another vendor. Sometimes it’s a learning experience and we need to learn how to say no to things so we can say yes to the projects we love. But listen, in the business, everything is not always Instagram worthy and you will realize that unfortunately, not everyone out there has the same amazing taste that you do. Your amazing skill will be to help that client make it go from drab to fab-u-lous, honey. That is when you know that you are really doing your thang. Even on a budget. Hey, it’s always easy to make things look great with a big fancy budget, a true artist can rock it with no funds.
  • From Evelyn: Any ideas on promoting flowers during slow times.
    • From Shelley: Instagram Giveaways, dropping off flowers to your local schools, churches, hospitals, funeral homes, local wedding coordinators, coffee shops, offering a bouquet of the weeks deal if you own a flower shop. Hold an educational class for mommy and me so that moms can bring their kiddos in to plant a flower or make a small bouquet. Hold an open house and get folks in with free drinks and food give a discount, Hold a Wedding workshop for the bridesmaids ro learn how to make a flower crown. There are many ways to promote your shop or studio that don’t have to be flower related…maybe a potluck or open mic night. I hosted a Kids Ted Talk at my shop that focused on my eco-friendly practices. Participate in your community and network with other shop owners so that people know you are there and get the word out.



  • Instagram Reviews of Antelope Valley Florist:
    • For Hashtags … I see that you are in Lancaster, CA, so I would use hashtags like:
      • #lancasterca #lancastercaflorist in addition to #antelopevalley #antelopevalleyflorist and other areas that you
    • Create hashtags for the different pieces of your business:
      • #lacastercaweddings #lacastercaweddingflowers
    • And you can add a few more general ones too: #flowers #


Mornings with Mayesh: July 2018

Mornings with Mayesh


During July’s Mornings with Mayesh episode, Yvonne, Dave, and Shelley discuss the world of flowers. See a great selection of flowers that are available now and learn more about peony season. In addition, they answer some great audience questions like: how long can stems be out of water before needing a fresh cut, can you use flowers cut from your garden, tips on designing with dahlias and hydrangea, how far in advance can you start designing for an event, tips on providing green or eco-friendly flowers, favorite vase sources, marketing to find your right client, how to find the best hashtags to use for your floral business, and so much more.


Here is the podcast replay, video and show notes:






    • Shelley: We have some cool Oregon product I pulled. I have black hollyhocks and rudbeckia etc..
    • Dave: I have some cool bleached white umbrella fern from Japan, giant astilbe on steroids from Holland, tree of heaven from California & nigella pods from California.
  • From Muffy: With Wedding season in full swing, can you let us know the availability on Peonies as it seems all the brides want them in their bouquets. Since the local markets here are now finished, we all need an alternative supplier or list of suppliers for this flower.
    • Dave: We are so lucky to have peonies almost all year round these days. Unfortunately, they do sporadically gap in availability as we transition from the geography where they are producing. We expect to get our next shipment from Alaska & it should hit sometime in the next few weeks and last into September. Peonies are typically cut in mass harvests and can be cold-stored for several weeks without compromising their integrity. This means the Alaska season can extend several more weeks into October. There is usually a short gap until we see production from our Chilean and New Zealand growers sometime in early November. Between that crop and some Dutch production, these usually carry us through until Israel hits in February. It’s always a good idea to have a backup flower in mind when your event hits on a seasonal cusp. Most peonies are field or greenhouse grown and variations in seasonal weather can change the expected cut date by weeks.



  • From Jen & Jesse: How long can a stem stay out of water before you should really give it a fresh cut again?
    • Dave: I would re-cut the stems every time they are removed from the water for more than a few minutes. Most flower food manufacturers directions state to recut the stems every other day before inserting them back into your freshly prepared floral food hydrating solution. By re-cutting them you are removing the part of the stem that holds air bubbles & bacteria that can clog stems, prevent proper water uptake and shorten the life of your flowers.
    • Shelley: correct Dave, a good way to tell if they need to be re-cut when you are designing with them for long periods of time if they are out of water is to check the end of the cut stem. If it’s starting to discolor or looks dry give it a fresh cut. If they still have water clinging to them they will usually be ok. Flowers should be re-cut after 2-10 minutes but can stay out of water for up to 2 hours. When in doubt always recut! it’s worth the extra effort and few minutes of your time.
  • From Kirsten: talk about how to handle different kinds of flowers cut this time of the year from our own gardens and how they hold up. hydrangeas are funky from the garden, they are dead in 24 hours. other flowers? tips?
    • Dave: When you are foraging from your garden it is a good idea to vase test all of your desired cuttings prior to using them in events. If they’re not at your cut flower wholesaler it’s for a reason. The varieties we sell have been selected or specifically bred to handle the stresses of cutting, shipping, and handling. Some garden flowers may lack the resilience needed for the rigors of cut flower design. Quick example, South American hydrangea growers have crossbred our more sensitive deciduous North American varieties with an evergreen variety native to tropical regions. This has created some very hardy hydrangea varieties that travel well and have a hugely increased vase life.
  • From Lynn – I love using Dahlias in our florals but seem to have various degrees of success. Hints???
    • Dave: We are in the height of dahlia season now and they are a real treat! They are a slightly sensitive flower so proper hydration in a floral food intended for bulb flowers is crucial. Keep them happy by refreshing their floral solution every other day and in a proper floral cooler at around 36 degrees F before and after design. By pampering them upon receiving they should firm up and be able to handle the stresses of design and ceremony. These are great wedding & event flowers but I would not recommend them for a weekly installation, 5 days is a good life expectancy for this flower.
    • Shelley: I especially prefer ball dahlias they seem to hold up the best.
  • From Patricia: My question is your suggestion for bouquets with hydrangea, particularly when they want the bouquets early for photos.



  • From Brianna: How many days in advance do you start styling?
    • Shelley: Styling or designing? You can begin prep work on your wedding on Monday prior.
      You can process hardier flowers like roses, get containers ready, inventory everything.. etc.
      You can begin designing some of the centerpieces and cocktails or smaller arrangements on Wed, Personals I usually will do the day before or the morning of if time allows. Large install pieces can be prepped ahead of time and then installed and completed on site. It depends on your level of work and refrigeration you have. How much workspace you have and additional staff. Most small to moderate weddings can be completed in 2 days, larger weddings require more time and work and a bigger staff.
  • From Kirsten: talk about green (environmentally) weddings and how to use flowers thoughtfully – I have a bride who wants this
    • Shelley: this is a topic dear to my heart. I used to own an environmentally friendly flower shop here in CA. In South American product look for Veriflora certified product if possible or the rainforest alliance seal. Also, try to only buy American grown or locally grown product if you can. This is going to limit some of your options of product but you can do lovely wildflower inspired looks with locally grown flowers and garden roses. You need to convey these types of requests to your sales rep here. We, as a company, have worked very hard to offer a robust variety and selection from California, Oregon, and Washington. The use of plants and succulents in your designs is also another way to have a reusable product for the bride after the wedding. She can plant or give away these to guests. Using drieds is also very environmentally friendly. Drying your excess flowers and then using them in designs which is very on trend right now, is a perfect way to keep them from going into the garbage at the end of the day. I sold tons of dried flowers that I preserved myself at my shop and most florists would have thrown all of those away.
      Limit the use of floral foam if at all possible. Try to avoid using containers that require foam.
      Offer to create a program or find a program that will pick up and donate the leftover wedding flowers and deliver them to nursing homes, hospitals etc..
      Upcycle containers, jars and other vessels start a vase exchange program. Have the bride’s family donate containers that are sentimental of heirloom instead of buying more glass from China, or import containers. Or rent your containers so that they may be repeatedly used.
      Dave: When you purchase flowers from us you already are involved! Mayesh buys farm direct and has aligned with 100’s of growers all over the world that are committed to sustainability. This encompasses all aspects from proper land and water use, crop rotation and soil preservation, wildlife and habitat protection around their farms, safe and nontoxic working and living environment for workers, proper handling and disposal of chemicals and the list goes on.



  • From Brianna: What are your favorite go-to places for buying vases?
    • Shelley: I am a fan of non-conventional and or thrifted or vintage pieces that already exist and can be re-purposed or re-used. If you have to buy new, Accent Decor is our favorite around here.. I also hit up places like Homegoods, Tuesday Morning and of course if you have the budget Pottery Barn has some of the best modern/organic pieces.I also love Park Hill designs they supply Pottery Barn too. You will have to request a catalog. I tend to look more eclectic pieces and not too matchy but if you do need to stay more budget-friendly and coordinated I would go with your local floral supply wholesaler.
  • From Rebecca: Also, I’d like to learn more about your Las Vegas location (I live in Henderson though am from LA) Do you ever host events there? I’d like to come by the space to see the pretty flowers either way.
    • Yvonne: Las Vegas is a great branch and each year we host Art in Full Bloom. The event showcases art and flowers inspired by the art to raise money for charity. That typically happens in the fall so be sure to check it out. You can visit our blog to see pictures and information from past events. If you want to visit a branch and talk to someone on the team, please feel free to connect with them to set up a time. People do drop in, but I don’t recommend doing that for your first time as there are days & times that can be very crazy.
      Post link:



  • From a retail flower shop: As a small independent florist who does not wish to take on the expense of rentals/set up/break down/per diem staff, etc. How do we market ourselves as a boutique wedding florist, doing smaller, more intimate weddings that focus on flowers and greenery more than draping fabrics and elaborate installations?
    • Yvonne: Ensure that your branding and marketing reflects the clients you want to attract and the type of work that you like to do – everything from your print, website, and social media. I visited the website and I noticed that you do not have a wedding section. So that is one thing that I would do immediately. You can add a landing page that talks about your designers, design philosophy, and wedding & event services/design, but most importantly has a form for potential clients to fill out to enter your “sales funnel”. Be sure to also include a portfolio showcasing your designs. Just be sure that all images reflect the type of work that you want to attract. I always recommend blogging for 2 reasons – SEO and having a central hub for your content. Even if you start by blogging 2 times per month, that is better than nothing. You can talk about local events and weddings, area trends, other local happenings & events, etc. This will help people find you and give you somewhere to point people to when you use social media. Once you’ve updated your website, but sure to also include content in your social media posts. I see that you have focused on the retail side of your business, so now you just need to mix in the other piece. I’m going to talk about hashtags next and that will be helpful to your social media marketing. Another step I would take would be to network with others in your community in the event industry. Agan, focus on cultivating relationships and partnerships with individuals and businesses whose ideal client is similar to yours. So I think these steps will get you started in your desired direction. Good luck!
  • From Roxanne: How do you find the trending hashtags for floral designers?
    Before I answer, does anyone watching want to share some of their favorite hashtags to utilize for their posts?

    • Yvonne: In general, top trending hashtags are great and if you have a post that fits perfectly with one, then great – be sure to include it. But as Roxanne, suggests, you want to use specific hashtags related to your business and then I would take it one step further and be sure to use hashtags related to your business and to your geographic area. The closed thing to a list would be to look at the hashtag list when you begin to start typing in a hashtag in IG’s search bar – Instagram will show you related/similar hashtags and how often they have been used.
      The best way to start creating a list of go-to hashtags is to think of specific topics. For example, if you are posting a wedding bouquet, you can use #bridalbouquet, #weddingbouquet, #weddingflowers, etc, but then you may want to add your target city in the mix #charlestonflorist #charlestonweddingflorist, #charlestonweddings, etc. The next thing I would do, it creates a list of hashtags that other people and competitors are using. Take a look at area influencers and maybe some of your top followers. Also, once you find some hashtags that you like, take a look at the feed and see what other hashtags are being used to get some ideas.
    • Here’s a great article from HubSpot about Instagram hashtags:

If you think of new questions for our next show, you can post them in the comments here or use the contact form to send them to Yvonne.

Be sure to mark your calendar for August 14th at 10 am EST for the next Mornings with Mayesh – see you soon!

Mornings with Mayesh: Florists to the Field

Mornings with Mayesh: Florists to the Field

Watch the replay of our LIVE show, Mornings with Mayesh, as we answering your flower questions with my flower friends, Dave Tagge, Ryan O’Neil from Curate – formerly Stemcounter, and Jodi Duncan from SocialJodi. We covered some of Dave’s favorite flowers that are available now, how to handle accounting for your floral business, easy wrist corsage techniques, paying for ads on social media, and reposting other people’s images on your social media pages.

Also, we interviewed our special guests, Greg Campbell and Erick New, co-owners of Garden District, about their brand new book, Florists To The Field.


Here is the podcast replay:





  • Latest flower 411
  • Dave showing some of his favorite flowers that are available right now



  • From Claire: I am new at Floral arranging. I started a little more than two years ago. The most difficult for me has been making wrist corsages. It’s agony for me. Yet it looks so easy when I watch others do it. Do you have a simple way to make a wrist corsage? The most difficult of it is attaching the flowers to the wristband.


  • From Tarrah: What do successful shops do for accounting?  Being an artist, primarily, accounting is not my strong suit; and I’m sure that problem is common among shop owners.  Especially for smaller shops where the owner may be designing some or most of the time.
    • Ryan O’Neil from Curate gave advice on how to think about and handle accounting for florists.


  • From Jen: I would love to hear what social media platforms florists are paying to be on. Facebook boosting, ads, etc, Instagram, and google. What kind of monthly budget makes sense. What’s recommended? Do florists do their own social media or use a company?
  • From Jaclyn: What is best practice for reposting someone else’s images from Instagram? I noticed y’all do so on the company IG; do y’all comment and ask permission, etc?


Part II


Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New

Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New have a partnership of boundless creativity with an anything-can-be-done attitude, and they have navigated the vibrant labyrinth of floriculture together for 25 years.

The florists operate in tandem as architect and engineer, exchanging roles as needed. Greg is the architect—a persistent, alert perfectionist—while Erick is the engineer—a methodical strategist always prepping for the next step.

Be it a skyscraping installation or an unobtrusive centerpiece, they weave flowers and greenery into textural structures that bring people together for every imaginable occasion.

Their most recent project was publishing their new book, Florists to the Field, and I’m very excited to have them on chat all about it.

Welcome, Greg and Erick!

Before we dive into the excitement of the book, can you tell us a little bit about yourselves and how you both ended up in the flower industry?

  • We both fell into the industry as young men- I don’t think either of us would say “florist” as our profession if asked in High School. We were lucky enough to have been hired by a gentleman named John Hoover who revolutionized the floral market in our area

How did Garden District come to be? And how did you come up with that name? (I love it, by the way!)

  • Our original location was in an area of town called Central Gardens and we were close to another neighborhood named Chickasaw Gardens. Combine this with our affection for New Orleans and we came up with Garden District.

Last question before we get to the book because we can’t interview a florist without asking… favorite flowers?

  • Greg-muscari; Erick- lily of the valley

Okay so… why now? What inspired you two to take on creating and publishing Florists to the Fields?

  • it all started with us planning a photo shoot at a relatively new flower farmer we know in Mississippi. She was flush with flowers during the hot days of summer when the demand was low. We had a free weekend so we suggested a photo shoot to promote the farm’s bounty. While discussing how we would decorate the barn, our friend, the caterer Elizabeth Heiskell suggested having a dinner in the venue and turning this into an actual event. The ticket sales ended up benefiting the grower and we are proud to report that the farmer is in her third year of production. We were then approached by Southerly Media about the possibility of a book which would chronicle our visits to farms that provide products for our shop and create events at each facility using only their product. The farms determined how to use the party-one a fundraiser, another a surprise birthday party for the matriarch, another a “thank you” for clients. 18 months later, 12 farms in our area, across the country and afar, and we have the book!

Florists to the Field

Who is your intended audience, and what do you hope they gain from reading your book?

  • We are hoping the book appeals to a range of individuals. There is the person that gravitates to books with images of pretty flowers. There is also the customer that is interested in entertaining. Since each chapter tells the story of each farm- the history, their production, the owners- we feel the book would be of interest to others in our industry. Since these operations are a vital part of the 25-year history of Garden District, we hope the book could be helpful to other floral companies.

Tell us about the different people you collaborated with to write this book and your experience with them?

  • Our publisher, Southerly Media- we could not have done this without their guidance. Our writer, Christian Owen, whose words brought each chapter together.  We can’t say enough about our principal photographer, Sarah Bell. We did not have the luxury of shooting in a controlled environment like a studio. We were in fields, barns, sheds, in the rain, sun, cold and Sarah not only endured sometimes less than ideal situations but produced gorgeous images.

What was your favorite part of the whole process?

  • Connecting with the farms. In this day and age of emails, electronic billing, FedEx, et it is nice to interact with these people we have developed relationships with over the years.

Garden District co-owners Greg Campbell and Erick New - authors of Florists to the Field

I heard you have an exciting event that you are part of happening in September – do you want to tell us a little more about the event and what you guys have planned for it?


Where can everyone find out more about you and your book?

 You can grab your own copy of the book by following this link:



If you think of new questions for our next show, you can post them in the comments here or use the contact form to send them to Yvonne.

Be sure to mark your calendar for June 12th at 10 am EST for the next Mornings with Mayesh – see you soon!


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