Rare Exotic Flowers

Colorful orchids offer a delicate alternative to your usual bouquet.

Colorful orchids offer a delicate alternative to your usual bouquet.

While the usual blooms and blossoms do plenty to brighten your garden or table, exotic and rare flowers can add interest to the most basic bouquets. Use rare flowers on their own or combine them with more affordable options to create centerpieces, floral displays or wedding bouquets. Many exotic blooms are tropical flowers, grown in warm climates. You'll find that these flowers are available year-round from a well-stocked florist like ProFlowers.

Orchids

Orchids are among the most popular exotic flowers. Orchids come in a wide range of shapes, colors and sizes -- from small flowers to very large and dramatic blossoms. While many varieties of tropical orchids are widely available, some types of orchids are out of reach for your bouquets or windowsill garden. The rarest orchids include the albino Phal Amboinensis and the finicky and hard-to-grow Cattleyas orchid. If you're working with a single type of orchid, place a single stem into each of several small vases or allow several stems to fill the space in a larger vase. Keep your arrangements clean and free of fuss to show off these rare blossoms. Cut orchids will last from five to 10 days with proper care.

Parrot Tulips

While tulips are a common garden bulb, some varieties add a flamboyant and dramatic touch to bouquets. Parrot tulips have frilled, feathered or curled petals. These tulips vary in color from pink striped to nearly black, allowing you to find a parrot tulip for nearly any arrangement and color scheme. While there are no true black tulips, the darkest parrot tulips are the least common and one of the most desired varieties. Tulips, including parrot tulips, are stunning as cut flowers but relatively short-lived.

Calla Lilies

Calla lilies offer a dramatic option for weddings and other bouquets. A simple grouping of several calla lilies in a bouquet creates a stunning display. The calla lily (Zantedeschia) comes in more than 28 varieties, all native to tropical regions in Africa. While white calla lilies are a classic choice, the trumpet-shaped flowers are also available in colors ranging from white and cream to deep, nearly black purple. Shades of pink, orange, yellow and red offer a wide range of color options. As with tulips, the darkest, nearly-black shades are the rarest.

Stretching Exotic Blooms

Combine costlier exotics with less expensive domestic blossoms to stretch your budget. For the most dramatic display, combine flowers in the same color family. Filling out a bouquet with roses, lilies or ranunculus, along with greenery, will allow you to make large arrangements with just a few exotic blooms. If you've invested in orchids or another stem with large leaves, use the greenery to add height and interest to your bouquets.

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