Choose a container that will complement the shape and color scheme you have in mind. If you are just starting out, go with a traditional size vase __ not too tall, and not to squat. As a general rule, your container should be about one_third to one_half the size of your finished arrangement. So, for a vased bouquet you'll need mostly flowers with longer stems. A smaller bowl or basket is fine, too. You'll simply have to cut stems shorter and may need floral foam to help position each bloom. It helps to start with the simpler designs and work your way up, and a vased bouquet is often recommended for a first project.
MEANINGS & USES _ The exact origin of the name Aster is debated. Some say the name for these beautiful flowers is direct from Greek mythology: Asters were said to have grown from the tears of the Goddess Asterea. Others say they were named for their abundant growing patterns (like the night sky) and their star_like shape. Asters have long been given to symbolize love, daintiness and afterthought. Gentlemen and ladies in the past used to present them to people they hoped to draw affection from. Placed on the graves of French soldiers, Asters were used as a symbol of a better life to come. They can also be used to symbolize a 20th Wedding Anniversary and are a wonderful gift in a bouquet for any occasion. The petals of the Aster used to be smoked to ward off evil serpents, but could also be used to help with headaches, colds, back pain and muscle spasms.