Recently, I had the chance to visit with Houston floral designer Maggie Bailey of Bramble & Bee. Towards the end of our visit, the conversation somehow landed on wedding cake flowers which reminded me of all the emails I’ve received over the years asking about the safety of using certain flowers on cakes eaten by wedding or party guests. Maggie was kind enough to share some pointers with us on determining which flowers are safe to use as cake decorations, as well as her techniques for safe bloom placement…
From Maggie Bailey:
Many of the gorgeous cakes in recent weddings feature clusters of dainty blooms or cascades of dramatic roses! Fresh cut flowers for wedding cake décor has always been popular, but seems to be the norm as of late. To that end, here are some ideas for ensuring that the blooms you use and the way you use them are safe for party guests.
An important factor to consider is that the cut flowers we use for arranging were probably not grown with the intention of being eaten. Likely, there were chemicals used on and around the flowers to aid in various aspects of the growing process. If you’re able to source your flowers from organic growers, then you have one less thing to worry about, but the majority of floral wholesalers are sourcing from farms that do indeed use chemicals in fertilizers and pesticides. So, even if the flower is technically edible, it may not be safe to eat.
Here are some popular wedding flowers which are considered edible:
Common blooms that can be potentially poisonous when consumed are:
A few tips for flower placement: When designing for the top of the cake or between layers, consider using design trays. When sticking flowers directly into the cake, you can use floral tape to completely wrap the stems. Water tubes or straws (regular or smoothie/extra wide) are great for sticking into the cake and preventing the stems from coming into contact with the cake at all!
Thanks for you insights, Maggie! And thank you, Buttercup Bakery, for providing the sweet cake for Maggie’s tutorial images.
Please feel free to chime in and share your techniques and insights on this topic in the comment section. We love to hear from you! We can learn so much from one another.
Happy Weekend. xo
I use garden roses in my designs and love them! Recently, I heard about garden spray roses. Have you used them? If so, what are your favorite varieties?
‘Madame Butterfly’ Garden Spray Rose | Seattle Wholesale Grower’s Market
I adore garden spray roses! The heads are a bit smaller, and the stems nod in such a lovely way. I love ‘Marie Romantica’- a icy pale blush with a flat head, and ‘Maria Theresia’- a richer pale pink with tons of ruffles. “Wendy” from Peterkort Roses in Oregon is super special as well- creamy white silver dollar sized heads that open completely flat and lasts forever. I’m not sure she’s technically a “garden spray” but she’s one to have in your back pocket for certain!
Susan McLeary (Passionflower)
I often design with garden spray roses from Peterkort Roses. My favorites include ‘Wendy’, ‘Surprise’, ‘Mimi Eden’, and ‘Moonstruck’. They are at their best when they are fully open so I keep them out of the cooler until they are at the perfect stage to design with.
The finest spray roses come from Peterkort roses in Portland, Oregon. I especially like ‘Maria Theresia’ and ‘Wendy’. You will love the many different varieties they offer. Speak with Norm and get to ordering. They are a very prestigious and famous American grower and one of the last of their kind. They are a beautiful company to work with!!!
Holly Chapple (Holly Heider Chapple Flowers)
My all time favourite garden spray rose is one called ‘Eden Romantica’. It has various shades of pink, with green guard petals and a beautiful form. It’s amazing and my clients love it!
Clare Day (Clare Day Flowers)
Pamela Stanmire Williams EMC