Day 201 - Seen from interstate 5 in Carlsbad, CA, the 40 acres of wildly colorful fields where these Ranunculus are grown are such an incredible sight that over the years the farm has been opened up to the public and has become one of the few flower "destinations" in North America. First established by the Frazee family back in the 1930's, the Flower Fields of Carlsbad are now managed by Mellano & Co. The Ranunculus bloom from mid-March to mid-May and during peak production more than 11,000 bunches will be harvested for the professional cut flower industry EACH DAY! Once the flowering season is over the bulbs will be dug up for sale to the home gardening industry and the fields will be re-planted from seed for next year’s crop!
Day 202 - Greenhouses in Latin America are mostly not heated, so when there is a big difference between daytime and night time temperatures, roses respond in a way that the pigments concentrate. In yellow and pink varieties, concentrated pigments appear as red flames or intense color chips, but in red varieties, pigments appear black.
Day 203 - More than 100,000 people—many displaced by Colombia’s guerrilla wars and rural poverty—labor in greenhouses spread across the savanna. Seen from an airplane, the greenhouses form geometric gray-and-white patterns reminiscent of an Escher drawing. Up close, they turn out to be bare-bones structures of plastic sheeting stapled to wooden frames. But the low-rent look is deceptive; the operations are highly sophisticated, producing some of the most beautiful blooms you’ve ever seen.
Day 204 - Scabiosa “pods” are currently on trend, favored by brides and other fashion savvy flora appreciators for their intriguing texture and delicate muted colors. Though not pods in the botanical sense, these pale globes, comprising papery, funnel shaped bracts, do have a dried flower look. The species is Scabiosa stellata, and the spherical inflorescences are marketed as “stellata pods” from late July to late October.
Day 205 - The Uluhe (oo-loo-hay) fern (false staghorn) can be found all over the east (wetter) side of the Big Island of Hawaii. The ferns grow well from sea level on up to 5,500 ft, but the most spectacular Uluhe ferns are found in Volcano and the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. The Uluhe begins growth as a shoot that comes straight out of the ground - with the fern tightly coiled at the shoots end. The shoot is about the thickness of a drinking straw. As the shoot grows the end uncoils and the fern leaves begin to appear. As the leaves mature they split into two sets of leaves, and from those another shoot can appear that will make another two sets of leaves. This can continue as the plant grows becoming almost vine like. These uluhe fern coils, fondly referred to as monkey tails around the shop, are very popular with trendy brides and look great in tropical bouquets.