Care and treatment of arranged flowers and importance of colour Once flowers have been arranged it should not be necessary hi disturb them again until the decoration is changed. If i he water has become dirty, change it by taking the entire arrangement to the tap and let fresh water pour into some part of the container. In hot rooms many flowers and leaves benefit by a light spray of clean room-temperature water. Flowers which grow in cool conditions, like violets, appreciate this. Chrysanthemums live longer if petals and leaves are sprayed once or twice a day. Full-petalled blooms like carnations seem to be prevented from becoming 'sleepy' too quickly. Sometimes flowers wilt inexplicably. To revive them, remove them from the arrangement, recut the stems' ends and stand them in two inches of boiling water until the water cools. This method can be used on all flowers except those which grow from bulbs, because the boiling water will ‘cook’ the stems. However, few of these except tulips are likely to wilt. If tulips should wilt, recut the stems under water. If the stem end is much lighter than the rest cut all the pile portion away. Stand in deep tepid water to harden. Lilac and other shrubs, garden fresh or forced, sometimes will badly after cutting. Cut away all leafy side stems, split these stem ends also and arrange them separately. The colours of the rainbow are the only ones to be found throughout nature. These are known as the spectrum. Among them are three primary colours: red, yellow and blue. The secondary colours, orange, green and purple, are derived from combinations of primary colours. In a rainbow the primary colours appear to overlap to produce the secondary colours and we can see that blue and yellow give green, and yellow and red give orange. If we make the spectrum into a star we can see how red and blue overlap to give purple. In a rainbow there always appears to be the same degree of light. Sometimes we see it more clearly when the colours seem more intense and we can say that they have a good tone but we do not see a dark rainbow or a very pale one. However, the colours round us vary much more. Dark ones which appear to have black in them are called shades. Light colours that appear to have white or light added to them are known as 'tints'. 'Hues' describe those which lie between the true spectrum colours. A forest may appear green, but when you look more carefully you will see that it is composed of many kinds, or hues, of green. If the spectrum colours are arranged in a star we can see I hat certain colours are opposite each other. It happens that I these have a natural affinity and are known as complementaries. Thus, blue is complementary to orange, red to green, and yellow to purple. When these are mixed we find that they make familiar 'safe' colours. Blue and orange make a grey, red and green make a brown, and purple and yellow make a tan. All of these are 'broken' colours. Other colours may also be broken. It is worthwhile playing with a paint-box for an hour or two to discover what clear colours lie in any broken colour for these are found in many natural materials and are therefore useful.
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