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Antique Florist Plants Tips

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Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

The Gilly Flower

Border Carnations or Gilly flowers as they were sometimes known, are one of the oldest types of Florist Flowers.
Fanatical Carnation fanciers of the ninteenth and early twentieth Centuries divided varieties into sections depending on bloom markings.
There were selfs, fancies, flakes, bizarres and picotees.
The picotee type were so highly revered that they were no longer called Carnations.

   
Which old fashioned flowers were popular 100 years ago?

Grey Edged.

The grey edged Auriculas had the same exacting colour and form standards as the other three sections of show Auriculas. Their peculiarity was that the outer edge of each petal had to be so thickly powdered with farina,(A naturally occuring mealy dust), as to appear grey.

   
What were the florist´s flowers?

Green Edged.

The edges of the petals were margined green and had no "dust" (Farina).Next to the green edge, was the body or ground colour, which could be yellow, blue,violet, purple, red, or maroon.The outer edge of the colour was allowed to be irregular, but the inner edge had to form a perfect circle.
Next to the ground colour came the "paste", which had to be pure white.The centre of the flower or "eye"had to be perfectly formed.

   
Why did florists grow auriculas?

The Dusty Millar.

The lowly Primula auricula or Dusty Millar, was elevated to the status of a Florist flower at the beginning of the 19th Century.
The Auricula caught the imagination of the old Lancashire weavers and their devotion led to a wide range of beatiful colour combinations.
Show Auriculas were divided into four sections, each with their own peculiar set of rules.

   
Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

Fancies

Fancies were defined as varieties not fitting into any of the other classes.The blooms had to be large, the base colour,( yellow, white or apricot), striped, flaked or spotted with various colours.
Varieties grown would have included the following:
Yellow Ground Fancies: "Becky Sharp," "Pasquin," "Sweet Anne Page."
White Ground Fancies: "Othello," "Lord Kitchener," "Betty."
Apricot Fancies: "Hecla," "Banshee," "Caprice"

   
Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

Selfs

As one would expect were of one colour only. The mearest hint of another colour would have disqualified an otherwise perfect bloom at the flower show.
Varieties grown would have included the following:
White Selfs: "Bookham White," "Trojan," "Farthest North"
Dark Red And Maroon : "Surrey Clove," "Hercules," "Induna."
Yellow Selfs : "Daffodil," "Ceilia," "Sunbeam"
Buff and Terracotta Selfs: "Robert Bruce," "Mrs Griffith Jones," "Elizabeth Shiffner"
Red and Scarlet Selfs: "Glowworm ," "Brigadier," "Fujiyama"
Pink and Rose Selfs: "My Clove," "Mrs Percy Smith," "Peach Blossom"
Wine Selfs:"Siska," "Miss Rose Josephs," "Opalesce"
Grey or Lavender Selfs: "Greyhound," "Ellen Douglas," "Evangeline"
Purple Selfs: "Royal Velvet," "Irma" "Cassius"

   
Which exhibition plants were grown in the past?

The Day Of The Show.

Auriculas were always grown in a cold glasshouse, so that they would reach the perfection required.
On the day of the show, the exhibitor carefully knocked the plants out of their pots, wrapped the rootballs in muslin,( so that more could be packed into a small space) and transported the prized plants to the Show, where pots and fresh green moss were provided for the exhibiters.
Where twelve distinct Auriculas were required, it was advisable to have 3 each of the 4 divisions of Show Auriculas.
Marks were taken off if the leaves were dirty, broken or if had the farina had accidently been rubbed off.

   
Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

Flakes

Flakes, like the bizarre type, were white ground Carnations but striped with one colour.
The stripes had to be clear and well defined, broad at the petal edge gradually narrowing till they sank into the heart of the flower.
Varieties grown would have included the following:
"John Peel," "Rose Noble," "Kobe"

   
Which old fashioned flowers were popular 100 years ago?

White Edged.

Auriculas-White Edged.
The white edged Auriculas had so much farina on the edges of the petals as to appear white.

   
Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

Bizarres

Bizarres had to be white ground Carnations , each petal being striped with two colours. The stripes had to be clear and well defined, broad at the petal edge gradually narrowing till they sank into the heart of the flower.
Popular varieties were:
"Armourer," "Black Diamond," "Remus"

   
Which show flowers did our ancesters grow/

The Perfect Bloom.

The Show Auricula flower had to be well formed and have 5, 7, 9 or eleven blooms on each individual truss.
The stem had to be stout, elastic and long enough to carry the bloom above the foilage.

   
Which border carnation varieties were grown in the past?

Picotees

So highly regarded by fanciers, the picotees often were not even listed with Carnations.
Picotees had a white or yellow base colour, the petals firm, flat and free from fimbration,(frills).
The petal edges had a line of colour that could be heavy, light or medium in thickness but of only one colour. It was thought a grave fault if there was a break in the marginal colour or horror of horrors, the marginal colour ran down a petal!
The more popular varieties from the Late19th Century were:
Yellow Ground Picotees: "Togo," "Professor Burstall," "Santa Clause," "Her Majesty"
White Ground Picotees: "Perfection," "Fair Maiden," "Clytie," "Lavinia," "Amy Robsart,"

   
Do Auriculas make good garden plants?

21st Century Garden Plants?

Auriculas do make beautiful garden plants flowering in late spring and again during the autumn.They grow well in a sunny or semi- shaded position in moist, slightly alkaline soil.
Plant some mixed colours and you will see what caught the old Lancashire weavers' imaginations .

   
Which exhibition plants were grown during the Victorian Era?

Self -Coloured.

The self coloured types of Auricula were those where the ground colour extended right up to the edge of the petal.

   
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