Cutting Tips


  • Cut from the garden early morning or late afternoon, just not in the heat of the day. Rainy, cloudy or cool days – cut anytime.
  • After cutting greens or flowers, immediately submerge in water.
  • Remove leaves that would be below water level.
  • Immersing stems up to blooms is best or at least halfway up the stem for complete conditioning.
  • Flowers or greenery do best if conditioned 24 hours.
  • Avoid stems of greenery that have new growth, they do not condition well.
  • Misting flowers helps prolong arrangement’s longevity.
  • Soak oasis several hours (overnight is best.)
  • Place garden flowers in cool water, if wilted, place in warm to hottish water to revive.
  • Woody stems should be smashed.
  • Hollow stems such as daffodils, tulips should be seared or burnt. Tubing is best for longevity in arrangement.
  • If arranging in water without oasis, add a few drops of Clorox to water to keep it clear and to kill any bacteria that shortens the life of the flowers and greenery.



  • Low arrangements should be a little wider than their container.
  • Tall arrangements should be 1½ to 2 times taller than their container.
  • If your arrangement has a theme, choose or make a container big enough to hold your arrangement.
  • Put enough oasis in the base to fill it up level with the top of the container. Cut off any that goes above the lip of the container.
  • Imagine an invisible outline of the shape you want to create and chose which side will be the front of your arrangement.
  • Choose your tallest and widest flowers and arrange them in your container first within the outline of your chosen shape.
  • Fill in around the base and lower part of the arrangement with more large blooms.
  • Working up and outward user smaller blooms or filler to fill in the arrangement.
  • Use the smallest blooms, foliage and filler to hide stems, oasis and the edge of container.



  • Specimen should be free of pests and disease.
  • There should be no evidence of dirt or spray on the foliage.
  • Dead or damaged foliage should be removed.
  • Be sure any container used is completely cleaned.
  • Staking is acceptable but should be unobtrusive as possible.
  • Spent pollen should be removed from flower petals.
  • Do not polish leaves.
  • Be sure to condition your specimen thoroughly. Flowers should be ¾ open.
  • Wedging material such as saran wrap helps to exhibit cuttings in the best prospective.
  • Plant material should be in the exhibitor’s possession for at least three months.
  • Proper labeling including the Genus and species is expected.