Allergy-free Wedding FlowersWritten by Thomas Ogren
Allergy-free Wedding Flowers Thomas Ogren
I get quite a few emails from brides-to-be, asking me which flowers would be good to use at their weddings, flowers that won’t make them or their bridesmaids start sneezing and sniffling right in middle of wedding. I get enough of these requests that I thought that subject warranted its own article. Wedding flowers First, flowers for a wedding ought to be bright, fun, cheerful, festive flowers. For example, I like “glads,” gladiolas, but I see them used at funerals all too often, so they seem out of place at a fun affair like a wedding. The one thing you don’t want with wedding flowers is pollen! With wedding flowers very little pollen is good, and no pollen at all is by far best. Daises: For starters I would avoid using most of daisy-related type flowers, daisies, gerbera, chrysanthemums, asters, dahlias, and sunflowers unless you know they're pollen-free ones. There actually are quite a few chrysanthemums, dahlias and asters that are called formal doubles and that have no pollen. All of these formal doubled flowers will be ones with a very high number of petals per flower. What has happened with these flowers is that they have been hybridized so often that pollen parts (the stamens) have turned into parts that now look more like petals (staminoids). All true formal double flowers will be pollen free. Goldenrod flowers (bright yellow) are often used as fillers in arrangements and goldenrod is a daisy-ragweed relative and will shed plenty of allergenic pollen. Don’t use goldenrod! Baby’s breath is a popular wedding flower, again, often used as filler between other larger flowers. Baby’s breath is grown and sold as single or double flowered. If you use baby's breath, use only doubled flowered types. Roses: Florist type hybrid tea roses that are still in a closed bud stage and that are not especially fragrant are excellent choices and will shed no pollen. If using roses picked from garden, choose only those roses with healthy green leaves, and pick roses that are still in bud to half-open stages. Some free-flowering garden roses, such as beautiful pale pink ‘Cecile Brunner’ roses, are always allergy-free and produce no pollen at all. The Banksia roses, which will be either yellow or white, are small, cute, come in dense sprays, and are also pollen free. Pots of blooming hydrangeas, especially of old-fashioned Hydrangea macrophylla type, are mostly pollen-free and are good choices to use. Pots of blooming double tuberous begonias, especially all erect type cultivars, almost all of these are great, very large, colorful flowers and pollen-free. The fancy flowered begonias called ‘Reigers’ begonias are also pollen free and come in bright colors or white, yellow, red, salmon, and pink. Lilies of all types can often now be purchased that are either simply pollen-free flowers, or else someone (who doesn't have allergies), can carefully remove brown pollen-bearing anthers on tip of each of six stamens in each regular lily.... watch this pollen as it will also easily stain your wedding clothes, especially anything white. Lilies that have had anthers removed will be completely pollen free. ** A caution here though: sap from any and all kinds of lilies can cause a very nasty, long-lasting itchy skin rash…certainly nothing any bride would want on her honeymoon! With this in mind, watch out for sap of all lilies and of Alstromeria too. Also, it would not be a good idea for a bride to even carry a bouquet of lilies, certainly not if she has skin that is in least bit sensitive. Anyone helping with wedding would be wise not to stick their hands into water in which lilies have been standing, as this water will have sap in it.
What Planet is Your Relationship on?Written by Elizabeth White
If men are from Mars and women are from Venus, what planet is their relationship on?
John Gray's bestselling book used a planetary analogy to understand relationships. It proved very popular as a way of understanding and interpreting behaviour patterns that men and women display.
Astrology also uses planets to understand and predict character traits and behaviour patterns. It is an extremely effective tool for analysing relationships. Venus and Mars are not only planets looked at, although they are important. In total there are ten planets to consider and 12 different signs that each planet could be in. This gives a very high number of possible combinations, which can lead to an insightful and detailed analsis.
One of reasons astrology is such a useful tool is its neutrality. By describing a relationship astrologically, a distance can be achieved. Difficulties then become a shared problem which could be resolved through co-operation. Identifying problem as 'We have a Mars opposition' is a much more neutral way of saying 'We argue all time' or even ' Why do you always argue with me?' What's more, astrology can even help to identify timing of both good and difficult times. Knowing that things will get better can dissolve a lot of tension.
In any relationship there will be combinations of harmonious and challenging aspects, but there will often be a way of relating to each other that seems to work most of time. It becomes a habitual way of interacting, line of least resistance. Sometimes one particular planet provides a dominant theme for relationship. In effect, it is planet on which relationship is based.
It could be moon, signifying that emotional rapport and domestic compatability are foundation on which it is based. Or it could be Mercury,indicating that both partners are on same wavelength, can communicate well with each other and enjoy chatting or even writing to each other. Or perhaps it is Sun, suggesting compatability at a deep level and that fundamental values and ways of approaching life are in harmony.