If you've ever faced the decision of whether to cut flowers from your garden for an inside display, or to let them grow naturally in your flowerbed, you are not alone. For many gardeners, the choice is difficult. The solution may be easier than you think. Growing a separate cutting garden filled with flowers suitable for cutting allows you to bring flowers inside without ruining the appearance of your regular flowerbed.
Shasta daisies complement nearly any flower with their brilliant white petals and contrasting yellow center. These hardy perennials bloom atop tall slender stalks from early summer until early fall. When added to floral displays, Shasta daisies brighten the bouquet and add a touch of cheer.
Cosmos produce multi-colored blooms similar to daisies, but the petals are typically shorter with fluted ends and centers are less pronounced. Available in a range of colors from fiery reds, orange and yellow to delicate pastels in pink and white, there is a cosmos for nearly any occasion. Cosmos have frilly foliage and make attractive filler flowers in large floral displays.
Zinnias also produce daisy-like blooms but the blooms are a bit more compact. These long-lasting blooms range in color from pink to shades of red and yellow. Available in both single and double blooms, zinnia flowers top long slender stems. Sturdy stems hold up well in both vases and floral foam.
Dahlias make a striking display with their full-petaled blooms. The size and shape of the bloom depends on the cultivar and ranges from tiny pompom varieties of less than an inch to large dinner plate varieties of 8 to 12 inches. Colors include pure white, pinks, purple, yellow and brilliant reds and may be single color or variegated. Stems are easily crushed and require care when cutting.
Coneflowers create a dramatic display with their large daisy-like flowers. Petals fold backwards to expose a prominent center. Although purple is the most widely recognized coneflower, new cultivars come in a range of colors in pinks and the yellow and orange palette. These long-lasting flowers bloom atop tall sturdy stems.
Lilies add a distinctive air of elegance to any floral display. Asiatic lilies bloom in an array of colors and remain fresh for days, while day lilies produce new blooms each day. The striking stargazer lily, with its deep pink petals speckled with white, is a natural for floral displays.
Rudbeckia, most commonly known as the black-eyed-Susan or "yellow daisy," is available in several shades of yellow and orange. Many produce the characteristic contrasting center referred to as the "eye," adding both depth and color to floral arrangements.