A great flower bouquet is a timeless way to show someone you care. The flower bouquet, and the flowers that comprise it, say a lot about you and the feelings you’re trying to convey, and a lot goes into picking the perfect bouquet.
When professionals want to dazzle with their flower arrangements, they often choose tropical flowers. They’re exotic, often bright and colorful, and they’re often much longer-lasting than more domestic varieties. Three such flowers are red gingers (alpinia purpurata), king proteas (protea cynaroides), and pincushion proteas (leucospermum). Ask for these the next time you’re in the market for a bouquet and you’ll be thrilled with the results!
Red ginger is a brightly colored tropical flower that are native to Malaysia. It also goes by the name ostrich plume or pink cone ginger. They also grow in countries throughout the Caribbean and Latin America and can be grown in South Florida and Hawaii due to year-round high temperatures and high humidity.
Red gingers can be excellent houseplants as well, as long as their soil is kept moist and they are kept out of direct sunlight. Including them in any flower arrangement can be a bold move, because of the bright bracts of red and pink, along with an interesting texture that’s outside the norm of typical flower petals. Depending on how much of the stem you include, they can add some height to make a great arrangement for an entry way, reception office, or foyer for corporate or personal customers. And with proper care, they can last over two weeks when cut.
King proteas are a flowering plant known for having the largest flower head in the Protea genus. They’re native to South Africa, to the regions of the south and eastern capes that are close to the coast. They also go by the name giant protea, honeypot or king sugar bush, and horticulturists have recognized 81 distinct varieties of the plant. Interestingly, it has adapted to be able to survive wildfires by having exceedingly thick underground stems that are able to quickly produce bulbs once the fires have subsided.
King proteas have very long vase lives, lasting up to 16 days when properly cared for. They’re very robust flowers, being able to survive harsher conditions than most other popular tropical flowers. In flower arrangements, they typically serve as the focal piece due to their enormous size; several proteas together would be an exceedingly large bouquet. There’s a huge variety of colors to choose from as well, and they will make for a striking bouquet no matter the occasion.
The pincushion protea is another type of protea with a large flower that grows in South Africa, Swaziland, Zimbabwe and Mozambique. It gets its name from its flower, which strongly resembles a pincushion with its long thin pollen-presenters that protrude from the head of the flower. Their spirally-arranged leaves stay green year-round, and the wide variety of flower sizes and colors make them a very popular flower to include in bouquets.
As with the king protea, pincushion proteas are often the focal piece of a bouquet. Since they’re quite a bit smaller, however, a bouquet may have two or three flower-heads as opposed to one king protea; they go well with other springtime blooms. Bouquets that are made up of a dozen pincushions are beautiful as well, especially since the forms are very similar but the colors vary so widely. Cut pincushion proteas can last between 14 and 21 days if properly cared for.
Red gingers, king proteas, and pincushion proteas can be excellent additions to any springtime bouquet or flower arrangement. They add a touch of the exotic, and their dazzling array of colors and varied textures can make a flower arrangement really pop. If they’re properly cared for in a vase, they can last well over two weeks, making them an excellent candidate for long-term flower displays.