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Flowers – not Just for the Girls!

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It may be a thorny subject, but it’s usually the woman who gets given flowers. On romantic occasions, at weddings, birthdays and even at a dinner party, it’s the female of the species who gets presented with the bouquets and bunches. Yet, men can and do love flowers and plants too. So let’s ditch the sexism and look at how and what to give to special men in our lives, too.

Everybody likes to be thought of as special, to receive a token of friendship or love. Simply to know they are remembered and being thought of, especially if they have gone through a bad time. Illness, injury and hospitalisation always merits a bunch or a bouquet of flowers, and bereavement even more so. It’s time to remember the men and that they need a gift too to show you care.

A recent survey in the USA may surprise some ladies. It revealed that, for Valentine’s Day, nearly two-thirds of men would like to receive flowers. So don’t be concerned that the man in your life will react strangely to getting the gift. Most men simply love getting flowers, and many now order arrangements for their workplace desk.

Choosing the best flowers depends on both the man and the occasion. In general however, men prefer the bigger, more dramatic stems. Lovely orange Asiatic lilies, towering gladioli and long stemmed crimson roses make a great choice. Males also tend to prefer strong colours and smells. So steer away from pretty little pastel daisies and sweet peas, sticking with the bolder, bigger and brighter flowers. Look at what men choose to give – to their partners and mothers. Especially when they put time and effort into their choice. You may not always agree with their tastes, which often run to chrysanthemums and primary colour carnations, but their choices will indicate what they themselves would like to get.

Florists now recognise a real market for men’s flowers. They create dramatic, contemporary arrangements. Some will include fun and thoughtful references to a man’s hobbies: for example incorporating golf balls or arranged in a tennis ball dispenser. Incorporate playing cards for the bridge enthusiast, or material flies and fishing line for the angler. Bonsais are an excellent choice for the man who likes to use his hands and likes intricate work. Let your imagination run riot.

When it comes to colour, don’t hold back. You can get dyed blooms in some fairly dramatic shades – black roses, for example. Sunflowers, with big heads and dramatic yellow and black are also good. White and purple orchids are dramatic and not seen as too feminine. A monochrome or primary palette appeals to the more masculine, ‘man’s man’. Tropical flowers are great: long lasting, tall and unusual. Look at anthiriums and heliconias, bamboos, birds of paradise and gingers.

Protea are another tropical flower offering drama, and so big that a single stem is all that’s needed in an arrangement or bouquet. A real talking point, they come in some sensational varieties. The ‘Black Beard’ has a tall cone, with clustering deep purple petals and bracts in cream. ‘High Gold’ looks a bit like a pin cushion, in stunning bright yellow. Most florists will be able to source these tropical delights, and may well already import them.

Flowers for men are all about interest, colour and making a statement. Think about his personality and tastes, then choose with confidence and send without any qualms. He will most likely be very pleasantly surprised and happy to have such a thoughtful, personal gift from you.