Spring will burst forth with a flurry of color and all the variety of an English garden. Tulips, iris, hyacinth, freesia, lisianthus, ranunculus and asters are just some of the season's best. Fashionable designs may include simple clusters with just one type of bloom, compact nosegays with an abundance of varied blossoms and tall vased bouquets with stylish blooming branches. Traditional pastels will be back, with a decidedly feminine flair, but don't be surprised by occasional accents in bright fashion colors.
It is said that the practice of flower arranging was originally used in Japan to pay tribute to the gods, and the floral arrangements were therefore considered sacred. In Japan, historical records documenting the appearance of traditional flower arrangements date back to about 500 years ago. It was in the seventeenth century that followers of this new form of artistic expression started creating the rules leading to the formation of what would eventually become the disciplinary art that is now known as Ikebana. The diversity of forms and methods that were developed over time made Ikebana a much more sophisticated form of art. In the end, Ikebana has become a discipline where the stage for the artistic expression is set by the harmony achieved through the combination of natural materials (flowers, stems and branches), the container, and the lines and forms that characterize the art of Japanese flower arrangement.