This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A correspondent of the Garden says:
"The Parisian bouquets are mostly far too large. Bunches of Roses 18 in. across in November were not only a great waste of floral beauty, but would also need a strong arm to carry them. Most of the French bouquets are also formed of one kind of flowers, and very seldom indeed is more than three varieties used in the same bouquet. Occasionally roses, Mignonette, and Pansies are used together, but not often.
"A very choice All Saints' Eve bouquet was purchased in the Madeleine Flower Market for five francs. It consisted wholly of Orange blossoms, mixed and fringed as was thought with small Orange leaves. On examination it was found that each single blossom was mounted on a stem apparently of grass or small hard rush. No ties were used. These stems were sharp at the upper ends, and the single flowers were merely pushed on. The leaves were also found to be not Orange, but a variety of the Solanum Capsicastrum. These were no bad substitutes, and with daily sprinkling the bouquet kept fresh and sweet for a week. Surely it was exceptionally late or early for Orange blossoms, even in France.
"The flower girls on the Boulevards of Paris - who are not numerous - have an odd way of disposing of their simple bouquets. They suddenly present themselves before ladies or gentlemen likely to buy - the English and Americans having their chief attention - making a curtsey and with a 'Pardon, Madame' or 'Monsieur,' they insert their bouquet in dress or coat, and retreat. Making a short detour they present themselves with another bow for payment. To refuse the moderate sum demanded, or return the bouquet under such circumstances would be out of the question."