Pretty Petals


Maybe it’s the impending arrival of Valentine’s Day or the fact that I spent most of the day snowed in after a blizzard, but I’m craving fresh flowers today.

Here are some tips for creating a striking arrangement, courtesy of Kimberly Hess, one of my favorite flower artists and the owner of Prairie Petals. All of the photos in this post are Prairie Petals creations.

Try unusual vases
Any vessel that strikes you can look more interesting than a huge, generic vase. Try mason jars, wine or beer bottles with the labels removed, vintage medicine bottles, pottery or tiny bud vases.

Consider unusual flowers and combinations
Tropical Flowers

A dozen red roses has been done to death. Try native wildflowers, grasses or a cluster of delicate blooms for a free spirit, or bold tropical plants and flowers for a strong personality.

Or try mixing something tropical and something traditional for an unexpected and eclectic look. Kimberly recommends sticking with one or two colors — or finding a florist who isn’t afraid to buck tradition — until you get the hang of it.

Avoid filler flowers
Purple Close-Up

Banish baby’s breath and chuck all those annoying little fern thingies. Invest in actual flowers instead.

A cluster of blooms in a favorite color looks striking and it works even if you’re on a budget. The bouquet itself might be a bit smaller, but it packs a lot of drama and always looks luxurious.

Buy specifically for the recipient

A Rose by Prairie Petals

Always consider the personality of the person who will be receiving the flowers — whether that’s you or someone else. You don’t have to know a thing about flowers to do this — just something about the recipient.

The ladies at Prairie Petals ask about a customer’s favorite colors, their clothing style, their hobbies and passions and if the arrangement will be in a home or office.

This makes sense, since a person who loves pastels, wears vintage and enjoys hiking will likely have a very different aesthetic than someone who gravitates towards acid brights, contemporary design and and luxury labels.

Plan ahead
Hydrangea and Daisies
Most florists are happy to help you assemble the perfect unique bouquet. But service and selection will be (understandably) worse if you come in 30 seconds before close or at the very last minute on Valentine’s Day.

If you’re in the Fargo-Moorhead area and want a bouquet like ones shown here, I can’t recommend Prairie Petals enough. They’re open from 9 a.m. until 8 p.m. tomorrow and Wednesday.

They’re open on Valentine’s Day as well, but I know you will have ordered by then…right?!

Prairie Petals
623 NP Avenue
Fargo, ND
Bus: Routes 13, 13U, 14, 15 or 18

Regular Hours:
Monday – Friday: 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Saturday: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.


Alicia Underlee Nelson

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