Weddings are expensive, and you’ll do anything to save money, right? While growing your own flowers sounds like a great way to cut costs, you need to be smart about it. I’ll show you all the things you need to consider, plus links to some fabulous DIYs for your cake, boutonnieres, centrepieces, and bouquets.
Note: Since first writing this blog post, I’ve transformed my backyard cut flower hobby into a flower farming business. Some of the DIYs and links I share in this post may be from earlier in my floral arranging journey.
What Flowers Bloom Around Your Wedding Date?
The first order of business is to figure out what is in bloom in your area around the time of your wedding. Bloom times can vary depending on whether it’s a cold, typical, or exceptionally warm year. To counteract this, you’ll need to plant various flowers in the colours you want so that something will bloom on your wedding day.
If your wedding is in the fall, keep an eye on frost dates. My dad grew half the flowers for my wedding, but frost was in the forecast a few days before the day. To keep the flowers safe, he had to cut everything two days before to ensure my flowers weren’t ruined.
All Flowers are not created equal for Wedding Arrangements
Wedding flowers need to be cut flowers. That is flowers that have strong and long stems. The only exception to this is flowers for your boutonnieres. You can get away with thinner stemmed flowers, although they might wilt by the end of the day.
If you’re planting perennials the year you’re getting married–think again. Many perennial flowers don’t establish themselves well until year three. If you don’t already have perennials in your yard (or someone else’s that you have permission to use), you’ll have to rely solely on annual flowers.
Annual flowers may also need to be started indoors in the winter to bloom by the time of your wedding. Carefully read the seed packets to know which ones to plant in winter and which to start in spring.
You’ll Need Way More Flowers Than You Think
If you’ve never done floral arranging, you’ll be surprised at how many flowers it takes to make a bouquet. You’ll want to double (or maybe even triple) the number of flowers you think you’ll need!
Don’t Forget the Greenery
Greenery adds a welcome break and contrast to the eye. You can use cuttings from cedars, leafy trees, and vines to add flair to your arrangement.
Cut Costs By Sourcing Flowers From the Side of the Road
Some weeds are genuinely beautiful. Depending on the time of the year, alfalfa, clover, ditch lilies, goldenrod, and more may be available in your area for picking. Please stick to public property or areas you have permission to pick, and always harvest responsibly!
Arranging Flowers Takes Time
If you are a bride reading this, please do not do your own flowers. You will not have time on the day of the wedding, and taking on this task will leave you extremely stressed out. Enlist a creative friend or relative to do it for you.
I’ve arranged flowers for many weddings, and here’s approximately how long it takes me:
- Removing all unwanted leaves from flowers the night before = 2 hours
- 13 boutonnieres = Around 1 hour
- 4 bouquets = 90 minutes
- Floral Cake Decorations = 45 minutes
For a wedding party of 10 (Bride, Groom, 4 Bridesmaids, 4 Groomsmen) plus boutonnieres for parents and people involved in the wedding party, it takes me approximately 4 hours to do everything. But I try to allow myself 5 hours, so I can take a few more breaks. In every instance, I would barely have time to get myself ready for the wedding.
Of course, your situation may require more or less time.
So now that I’ve possibly scared you out of doing this, what else can you do to save money on flowers?
How to Save Money on Wedding Flowers
If you still want someone to arrange your flowers, you can order flowers in bulk online or at a big box store. Then, you can supplement these flowers with whatever you’ve grown that is blooming at the right time.
If you’re lucky enough to live near any flower farms, you can often arrange to go and pick flowers and be charged by the pail. Prices are usually quite reasonable, and you can get a better variety of flowers than you would find in stores.
P.S. Want to see one of the first weddings I arranged flowers for? Click here to see a beautiful coral & navy-themed wedding.
For more of my wedding work, check out these videos:
How to Arrange Your Own Wedding Flowers
If you’re still on board with arranging your own wedding flowers, here’s how to make it happen:
- Boutonniere tutorial
- Cake tutorial
- Bouquet tutorial
- Bouquet tutorial 2
- Centrepiece tutorial
- Floral Hoop Wreath tutorial
- Easy Mason Jar tutorial
- Teacup tutorial
- Rustic statement piece
If you liked this blog post, find me on Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram to follow more of my farmer florist journey and join in the cut flower conversation! I also make weekly videos on my YouTube channel. You can also sign up for bouquet-making events and buy my flowers at my sister site Shifting Blooms. I hope to see you there!
P.S. If you love the content I create for Shifting Roots, consider joining our community on Patreon. Your support means the world to me, and I am grateful for each and every one of you!
are you ready to make your DIY dream wedding a reality?
This bundle is for all you DIY brides and grooms out there! If you’ve been dreaming about growing and arranging the flowers for your wedding, these resources will help you grow and create simple wedding flowers that will look stunning. Do you want simple arrangements without complicated mechanics? Getting married between mid-July and early September? Get your DIY Wedding Bundle today!