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  • Double Flowered Freesia Trends

    Public Relations Marketing, Inc., sourcing the Flower Council of Holland

    According to the Flower Council of Holland, the supply of double flowered freesia furnished to the Dutch flower auctions has grown by 8 percent over the past three years, accounting for more than 30 percent of the total supply. This increase in appeal is attributed to bigger spikes and more flowers per stem.

    Last year a new project group was set up in the Netherlands charged with giving Freesia a new image. Research had shown that in the Netherlands freesia was considered a traditional flower, even though it was rated favorably in terms of color, fragrance and ambiance. Traditionally, double flowered freesia have a shorter, more compact spike, a thicker, harder and slightly curved stem and a smaller number of buds than their single flowered relatives. The new look of Dutch double freesia varieties feature larger spikes and more flowers. The buds are oblong rather than round as in the single flowered varieties.

    The most important cultivar in the double flowered group is still the yellow "Yvonne", followed at a distance by the yellow 'Grace', the red 'Marianne', the white 'Ambassador' and the purple 'Purple Rain'. Unusual varieties include the blue 'Blue Bayou', the brown 'Lady Brunet' and the white 'Excellent'. Very special cultivars include the striped yellow 'Striped Sun' and the blue and white 'Striped Jewel'. Their availability is still limited because propagation of the corms is a slow business. It takes several years before new varieties are available in large numbers.

    Studying color distribution we see that yellow is still the most popular among the double freesia (45 percent of supply), followed by white (28 percent), red (11 percent), pink (6 percent) and purple (4 percent). White and pink are rapidly increasing in popularity. For the purpose of comparison, among the single flowered freesia, white is the most important color (33 percent), closely followed by yellow (32 percent), purple (23 percent), red (4 percent), orange (3 percent) and pink (2 percent). Brown in the color showing the greatest increase. It is especially in demand in the autumn.

    To the Dutch, quality of product is essential to success. Freesia has an average vase life of twelve days, but the flower Council of Holland cautions that the following steps need to be taken to ensure that the freesia can be enjoyed for its full life.

    • Stems should not be purchased while too immature.
    • For minimum maturity, the first bud on the spike must be fully developed.
    • The main spikes are generally heavier and longer than the subsidiary spikes or "hooks", which form after the main stem has been cut.
    • In winter, the flowers need to be slightly more mature than in spring and summer.
    • Freshness and firmness should be observed.
    • Flowers should be stored in water at 32 to 36 degrees Fahrenheit.
    • Cut flower food should be added to the water if storage is greater than one day.
    • Flowers are sensitive to dehydration, so they should be wrapped and pre-cooled.
    • Dry storage should be limited as much as possible or flowers will fail to open.
    • Freesia is ethylene sensitive so should be kept away from ripening fruit, vegetables and exhaust fumes.
    • Consumers should be advised to cut about 1ý inches off the base of the stems.
    • Prior to arranging freesia in a vase, it is best to leave the flowers wrapped while they drink their fill of water to which cut flower food has been added.



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