Tips for better flower arrangements from Old Westbury Gardens’ Scott Lucas:
• As a general rule, the arrangement should be double the height of the vase.
• Meander with your color throughout the arrangement—don’t concentrate it in one area.
• To protect your furniture from being stained by pollen from lilies, eliminate the problem by gently opening the bud and delicately removing the stamens before the lilies open.
• Big clusters of filler tend to wilt, so don’t overdo it.
• Always cut the stem at an angle to increase the surface area for uptake of water. Add a powdered floral preservative to the water to extend the life of your arrangement.
• Hide the lip of your vessel.
• Yellow and white alstroemeria can be bought inexpensively at the supermarket, and can supply color to the arrangement if you don’t have enough flowers from your garden.
• If you don’t want the stems to show through a glass vase, camouflage them by wrapping them with hosta leaves.
• To prevent the build-up of algae in the water, change the water every two days.
• If you use chicken wire, you’ll have to change it after several uses because it will rust.