Mornings with Mayesh: May 21

Mornings with Mayesh: May 21

In the latest episode of Mornings with Mayesh, Yvonne and Shelley answer your questions. Some of topics that were covered include: Toffee roses, flower care books, floral arbors, writing off spoiled flowers, flower schools, wedding deposits & more. Join the conversation!

Mark your calendars for June 11 for our next show featuring Debra Prinzing of SLOW Flowers. I hope you can join us and keep on sending in your floral questions!


Here are the podcast replay, video, and show notes:









  • 4/15, Kimberly: Are there any options to purchase flowers that do not come wrapped in plastic? Are there any changes in the works to move from plastic to a recycled product, or one that can be recycled?
    • Yvonne: Many flowers arrive in buckets or boxes without sleeves. Flowers that are shipped sleeved are done so to minimize damage while shipping them into the USA. Sleeves are added later mostly to protect fragile blooms from mechanical damage from normal handling during merchandising and sales. I agree paper is a much better ecological choice but plastic keeps the cost of the flowers lower.

  • 4/15 Cambria: I am new to the Mayesh Flower market and have been struggling with finding prices, I do see the price sheets by the front counter but sometimes I don’t know the name of the flower.. or when i’m choosing roses, I can’t tell which rose their referring to.. I get real nervous during checkout because i’m unsure of the price sometimes..  Who is the one that I can ask “how much”?
    • From Shelley: The best way to get prices are just to simply ask your sales rep or the cashier helping you. We do not want you to be nervous or have sticker shock. We are very transparent about our pricing. You can also always ask us for a quote before hand. You can also email us a wishlist and we will price it out for you. The more you order the easier it is for you to get a general idea of pricing. Prices can vary sometimes week to week or do to seasonal fluctuations but if you cost average you will be good in general


  • 4/15, Cathy: Hi, Are Toffee roses available in September? And if so how early should I place my order?
    • Shelley: Production on this variety has been increased by the few growers that have the rights to grow it, however, it has been heavily marketed and is a stand-alone unique color. You should place your order as far in advance as possible to ensure fulfillment.

  • 4/15, Karen: Are you a wholesale flower company? Can anyone come in and buy flowers? I’m in Los Angeles and I’m doing all the flowers for a wedding in December. Am I at the right spot here?
    • Yvonne: Mayesh is dedicated to retail florists and does not sell to the public. We require a verified resale number to open an account and shop with us. We would be glad to refer you to one of our many fabulous wedding and event florists who retail our floral products.


  • 4/15, Kelly: Working with dusty miller in bridal bouquets, etc.   it always droops
    • Yvonne: During March’s show we answered a very similar question. Here’s the answer that Dave gave: In Phoenix, we import our Dusty miller from an Ecuadorian grower almost all year round. It has a remarkably long vase life, up to a week or more. Of course, these commercially grown varieties are selected for their strong traits and last longer than if they are foraged from your garden. In my experience, the lacier leaf varieties tend to be a little more fragile than rounded leaf varieties. When hydrating dusty miller, make sure to avoid submerging their short stems too deep or dripping water on the tops of the leaves. Their fuzzy surface tends to hold moisture that can activate botrytis spores on the leaves and cause bacteria to form in the water quickly. Using the recommended dose of flower food, recutting stems & changing the water frequently ensures they stay hydrated and firmed up.
    • Link:

  • 4/15, Krisanna: Hi, I have downloaded Mayesh’s flower care, but I was wondering if their might be a comprehensive book on floral conditioning? I would like a hard copy or reference, I use google, but I’d prefer to have book.  I enjoy your podcast very much, thank you!( I have even met the beautiful Shelly in real life.)
    • Shelley: 
        • Paula Pryke-Flowers, Jane Packer's The complete Guide to Flower Arranging, Rene’s Bouquets by Rene Van Reme, Kenneth Turner’s Flower Style, Madderlake’s Trade Secrets, The New Flower Arranger by Fiona Barret, Pulbrook and Gould's Flowers for Special Occasions, Martha Stewart’s Weddings book
        • Buddy Benz from Texas A&M university is a classic. Go to their website to order.
    • Yvonne:

  • 4/15, L.R.: How do you process passion vine, jasmine vine and hanging pepperberry when you receive it to get a lush, long lasting product? I've ordered these greens multiple times from various vendors in the past (not Mayesh) and feel like they don't hold up for a day and sometimes don't even make it to the event. I love the look of them. Is there something I'm missing here or am I just receiving bad product across the board? From shattering pepperberry leaves to crunchy passion vine... I can't keep this stuff alive!
    • Shelley: Most of these hold up fine..make sure that you recut the stems and that the product is fresh upon arrival.Check for damaged or wilting leaves ahead of time. Keep longer foliage in taller buckets and make sure it’s not dragging on the floor. Keep excess greenery out of the water and make sure water is clean. Keep in a cooler when possible until ready to use, greenery can dry out pretty quickly.


  • 4/15, Carie: My question is this::  When decorating an arbor with flowers (One on the top and one on the side) how do you determine the size (length and width) to make the arrangements, AND are there any tips or tricks to help make this easy.  I have been told to make sure that I put my zip ties thru the cage before I make the arrangement or I wouldn't be able to get them thru it etc. Do you make them on an easel or laying down, etc.
    • Shelley: It really is about the overall design that you want to create. It’s a good idea to sketch out your design and, if this is new to you, possibly make a mockup to determine the size and scale of the piece. This all comes with practice and experience. You do need to put your zip ties on floral cages first. You can partially design these on a flat surface/table first and then complete the piece once it’s installed. You can also create your design in rolled chicken wire “burritos” as our friend Passion Flower Sue teaches. It gives you more fluidity and control.  

    • 4/15, Tatiana: As a budding florist (no pun intended) I have some opportunities to get market style bouquets out in a couple of small business shops, do you guys have any tips on choosing flowers that last and how to create recipes that will help me have consistent cost and price?

    • Shelley: Most long lasting flowers work best. As a florist you get to know them by working with them. Lilies, roses, mini callas, carns, alstro, snaps etc all hold well. Larkspur, delphinium and astilbe- not so much. Also is it a controlled environment? My suggestion to you is to try out a few combinations and then create a recipe from those combos that work. There is a reason you tend to see the same pedestrian or generic looking flowers at the grocery stores..they are performers that are pretty reliable and hold up well. Not to say you can’t make yours look more unique say with proteas, pincushions, orchids or cape mix for example.  It’s going to take a few go rounds to figure it out.



  • 5/17, Courtney: I've heard a lot of mixed reviews with this and have done research by asking around with florists, accountants and bookkeepers and still it's confusing. I'm trying to see if we as florists can write off our spoiled flowers or get some sort of tax break. I heard some florists that do this but I don't know them or have their contact info.
    • Yvonne: Short answer is yes… It’s part of your “cost of goods sold.” Not sure what type of entity you are, but if you’re filling out a schedule C it will walk you through the calculation in Part III (lines 35 through 42, see below). However, you don’t need to separately track spoilage, it will just be taken into account in the formula below.
    • How do you guys handle the flowers you throw out?


  • 4/15, Juliet: are there any tips you have for someone thinking about going to school for floral design?
    • Shelley: While it’s definitely great to go to a school the best experience is hands on working at a shop or event company in real time. If you can it’s a good idea to do both. A school will focus on proper mechanics and technique ( I love schools for this) while a shop will work with the latest trends.

    • 4/15, Juliet: any tips for a new business owner that is starting their business out of their home?
  • Shelley: This is a whole topic in itself. Are you talking about how to start the business or get business or how to create a space to work in?
  • Set up a space that you can work in that is 100% dedicated to your business space. It’s very difficult to keep your work life from interfering with your personal life otherwise. Try to get a small cooler and keep your studio organized and clean.

  • 4/15, Crissalane: I know a lot of florists use 20% for charging labor. When a client books you for candles and greenery that is cost effective - the labor comes out very low, when the actual time it takes to make the centerpiece is time intensive. I feel as though we aren't getting paid properly for our time when we only charge 20% of labor on cost effective items that take a long time to put together. (Ex: cylinder vase centerpiece holding water with a floating candle and flipped greens around the base).
    • Shelley: Correct you should be charging according to the amount of labor that the project entails. It is just as time consuming putting these items together as actually designing. You have to come up with a formula that works best for you. There is no industry set standard  

  • 4/15, Susan: For a wedding, how much do you ask for as an initial deposit? When do you require full payment?
    • Shelley: This is your call ultimately,  but most florists do %30-%50 and the balance is due 3 weeks before the wedding. This should also be the time you do your final consultation. Make sure your contract is clear about this and whether you will or will not refund deposits. Most do not.



Back to Blog