The Flannel flower is a soft bloom, similar to a rose or carnation. It has creamy-white petals (bracts) with green tips. Under protected cultivation, with nutrition and regular water, it is a spectacular cut-flower bloom. As a cut-flower, it has a long vase life of 2 – 3 weeks if kept cool, hydrated and out of direct sun. Florists use it in bouquets, wreaths, and as a wedding flower, mixed with both exotics and other native blooms. The flower is also popular in large bunches for both interior decorating and as a gift for loved ones.
Flannel flower cut-flower blooms have been sold all over Australia and also in the USA, UK, Europe and Japan.
A Rural Industries Research and Development Commission (RIRDC) funded project was done by Lana Mitchell in 2008 that had the subject of wildflowers added to the Australian floristry curriculum, as up to that point, it was not specifically included and was resulting in florists not being taught about our native flowers or how to use them in floral design. In 2009 and 2010 another RIRDC funded project was run to educate existing florists in Australia on what flowers exist, when they are in bloom and how to use them in floral design. Key to this was educating florists that our Australian native flowers are brilliant with exotic flowers, and when combined with such – create truly modern Australian floral design. This theme has been well embraced by many of the well-known floral artists of Australia, and can be seen in magazines worldwide over recent years.
RIRDC has published recently, a series of quality specifications on a large number of different Australia native wildflowers — including Flannel flower. This can be purchased (hardcopy) or downloaded for free (softcopy) from the RIRDC website – and includes valuable information for those growing Flannel flowers as a cut-flower crop. RIRDC is also publishing a detailed report on the flower in late 2012, giving the latest research and information on the cultivation of the Flannel flower as a cut-flower crop.