Staying Power

Flowers are one of the prettiest ways to freshen a space, but those colorful blooms can uproot the decorating budget. Barbra Scott of Greenwich can help you keep those vases full and save money at the same time.

Scott, whose business is based in Mamaroneck, New York, creates arrangements that are carefully preserved and last for at least four months. Her process: She immerses each bloom in silica gel, a nontoxic dried compound of sodium silicate and sulfuric acid that removes all moisture from the flower without changing its natural shape. In this new state, the bloom won’t fade or crumble for months. The average price for a coffee table arrangement is about $600.

Scott says arrangements of hydrangea and peonies have been best-sellers for years, but recently, she’s getting more requests for topiaries. “I’m tired of the boxwood variety, so we do more moss topiaries, which have a sensual look,” she says. “They’re preserved in glycerin and last anywhere from three to five years. We also have preserved moss gardens that look great in contemporary homes.”

Recently, she’s expanded her product line with seasonal branches. “They’re statement pieces and look great in the large entry halls I see in many homes in Fairfield County. They can last forever, too, but most people like to change them out every season.”



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