ADD SOME TROPICAL FLAIR
“We’ve fully embraced our proximity to the beach by creating a lush, tropical oasis on the grounds at The Ritz-Carlton, Naples,” says Thompson. She likes to bring the outside in with bright, sunset-inspired arrangements that often incorporate the same blooms found on the property. Don’t have tropical varieties growing in your garden? Try one of Thompson’s favorite trios to bring the beach vibes home: red king ginger, orange psittacorum, and fuchsia mokara orchids. “They are just so bold and stately; you can’t help but stop and stare!” she says.
CUT AND DROP TO SAVE TIME
“Knocking an arrangement out quickly works best with a cut-and-drop type of flower,” says Thompson. “Any kind of flower that has its own attractive foliage attached is key because you don’t need to add additional elements.” She recommends reaching for a bunch of fluffy hydrangeas, blousy peonies, or mini callas that take up space and can stand alone. “They do wonders when you only have minutes to spare!” Thompson adds. Properly trimming the stems, however, is just as important as selecting the right blooms. To snip like a pro, use garden clippers or shears in lieu of basic scissors to slice off two inches and create a sharp, angled cut. This provides thirsty flowers with a wider surface for maximum water absorption and helps prevent premature wilting.
REFRESH YOUR VASE
All you need to extend the life of your bouquet is a little TLC. Re-trim your stems about one inch, clean the vase, replace the water, and add a dash of flower food every three days, says Thompson. She also recommends removing any blooms that are past their prime, even if they aren’t completely dead. “This helps slow bacterial growth and doesn’t allow the advanced decay of a few stems contaminate any of the fresher flowers,” explains Thompson.