24 Apr2011

Easter Blooms…

by Marketman

We left the beach just as the maddening crowds were arriving. A quiet Easter holiday in what appears to be deserted Manila (no traffic at all!) is much more appealing than one might think. On Saturday morning, I sent our in-house “florist” Leny, to Dimasalang with a short list and a fixed budget. The list said “6-8 large purple hydrangeas (if they still have them)” OR “4-6 bundles (8-12 dozen) pink roses” OR “some white lilies” and they returned with all of the above, with change. :)

The first large arrangement includes 5 enormous heads of deep purple hydrangeas. The stems were a bit short, hence the squat appearance of the arrangement. Roughly 5 dozen medium sized dark pink roses were inserted between the heads of hydrangeas. It was a bit intense, more color than usual when compared to a pastel easter palette of colors, but stunning nevertheless…

I realize it’s Spring and the daffodils and other early flowering plants should be making their appearance right now, but in the Northern U.S. where I have family, some parts are still as cold as the freezer section of your frigidaire and some folks even got snow in the last couple of days…

For an early Easter dinner with friends last night, we set the dining table with three heads of hydrangeas and used blue and white placements, plain white porcelain plates, silver and glass/crystal. The menu wasn’t anything resembling a typical Easter meal; instead, it included a lot of seafood we dragged back from Batangas. Oh, and here’s a bit of trivia… I was recently reading an article that said that having baby or young lamb for Easter is a bit silly, because most baby lambs are born just a few days or weeks at most before Easter, and its best to fatten them up a bit before you eat them. Therefore, the best time to eat young lamb might actually be May or June, and not Easter… See one of my earlier Easter posts with lamb, below. Of course these days, lambs are probably artificially knocked up so that they give birth in the dead of winter and then you can buy “Spring lamb” that was actually “Winter lamb”… :)

I hope all of you have a wonderful Easter! Below are some links to previous Easter related posts on marketmanila…

Easter Eggs, 2005
Easter Flowers, 2005
Happy Easter! 2006
Easter Goodies, 2007
Easter Eggs a la Marketman, 2007
A Mezze Style Lunch a la RAM, 2007
Happy Easter!, 2009
An Easter Meal, 2009
Agnello di Pasqua / Easter Lamb a la Marketman, 2010



  1. zerho21 says:

    Happy Easter too Marketman!!! Very nice and simple flower arrangements.

    Apr 24, 2011 | 8:54 am


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  3. millet says:

    WOOOOW! show-stopping, both floral and table arrangements! happy easter to you and your family and household, MM!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 9:24 am

  4. yasmin says:

    Lovely flower arrangement! The Colors of Easter. :-)

    Apr 24, 2011 | 9:26 am

  5. Guits says:

    Happy Easter to you, too, Mr. MM, family, and crew.

    Apr 24, 2011 | 10:14 am

  6. jack says:

    happy easter MM and to everyone who never fails to visit your site like me. And oh, im in love with the flowers–the colors, the arrangement!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 2:20 pm

  7. sophie says:

    Happy Easter MM and to your family. Lovely flowers and I was amazed that all of the flowers above in the list are bought and with a change :), wow… it seems not everybody is rushing to Dimasalang!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 3:58 pm

  8. Mom-Friday says:

    Gorgeous table setting as always! Can’t get enough looking at these lovely blooms!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 4:10 pm

  9. Sleepless in Seattle says:

    Happy Easter MM,Family and Staff !! your flower arrangements are fantabulous!! This is why I’m drawn to your site I love.. love ..flowers. We choose to live in the Pacific Northwest because of wide array of flowers that thrives here.Gardening & cooking are two things that i am passionate about.Thanks to you,I wake up inspired to do new things.Just wondering MM ..if Peonies are available in Manila,They will be blooming in May in my garden .I would love to see Peonies arrangement .
    if they not in your archives yet.I should check.

    Apr 24, 2011 | 4:18 pm

  10. Marketman says:

    Sleepless, no peonies in Manila, they need cooler weather and possibly a winter hibernation. They are spectacular, and one of Sister’s favorites, but unless you order them in advance, almost impossible to find at Manila importers/florists. I saw them once and I think they were $10-15 per stem! sophie, florist Leny said Dimasalang was rather empty, and few flowers or customers in sight, hence the wonderful prices. Humongous hydrangeas she got at PHP65 per bloom, well below the PHP100 per bloom high at Christmas, the medium long stemmed roses (I cut them back a lot) were PHP80 per two dozen bundle, and the lilies, the priciest of them all, were PHP150 per stem. Thanks for all the Easter greetings… :)

    Apr 24, 2011 | 4:44 pm

  11. lookie says:

    Happy Easter, MM.
    I gave you up for Lent!!!!.That was the ultimate sacrifice,the hardest I’ve ever done!!!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 7:34 pm

  12. natie says:

    Happy Easter to you and family, MM! very lovely flowers!! yes, the flowering trees and shrubs are now putting on spectacular shows!!

    Apr 24, 2011 | 8:43 pm

  13. Marketman says:

    lookie, WHAT? HUH? How bizarre is that? I suppose I should be flattered. :) Kind of like being addictive in a good way perhaps? Does that mean you can’t go back and read the posts over the last 40 days? :)

    Apr 24, 2011 | 8:51 pm

  14. greens_blossoms says:

    Happy Easter to you MM and your family! Good thing, Leny bought flowers Saturday morning – earlier on in the week, you would be shocked with the sky rocket prices and the crowd buying flowers – you would think it was Valentine’s day…

    Apr 24, 2011 | 9:53 pm

  15. evAv says:

    Happy Easter!!! One week more to go and it’s month of May…Im so excited na mag-open na yun restaurant mo dito sa Cebu. I saw a banner somewhere near ayala that “Kan-anan” is opening soon i was wandering if that is ur to be opened kainan.

    Apr 24, 2011 | 9:56 pm

  16. lookie says:

    Bizarre is not even the best way to describe it. I tried to do it last year and the year before but I was not able to make it.That’s how addicted I am to your website.I thought about how most people give up meat or chocolates or anything but those wont really make me feel that I sacrificed enough. To tell you the truth and I’m not exaggerating it was one of the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. I go to your website probably ten times a day. I think I’m your number one fan, don’t comment that much, my typing skill is …. I did not listen to my father when he told me to take typing in college instead I went for drawing

    Apr 25, 2011 | 1:53 am

  17. lookie says:

    Oh yes MM, right after the Easter Vigil,as soon as we arrived home,that’s the first thing I did, go to your website and read everything, was not even interested with dinner. Crazy I think Lol!!!!HUbby knows !!!

    Apr 25, 2011 | 2:00 am

  18. Sleepless in Seattle says:

    OMG..MM. Peonies .. Thanks for replying ..i checked your past archives and i put myself in “duuh” i knew that you will post one if you can get them. I just wish i could send you some .I have lots of blooms to share.Yes..they need hibernation..bloom once in May and they are done till early summer,hence why they are so pricey..I guess.

    Apr 25, 2011 | 2:05 am

  19. Sleepless in Seattle says:

    OMG..MM. Peonies .. Thanks for replying ..i checked your past archives and i put myself in “duuh” i knew that you will post one if you can get them. I just wish i could send you some .I have lots of blooms to share.Yes..they need hibernation..bloom once in May and they are done till early summer,hence why they are so pricey..I guess.Last night i checked all past posting on flowers.They are all spectacular!!

    Apr 25, 2011 | 2:31 am

  20. Mike says:

    Interesting placemats. What are they made of and where’d you purchase them?

    Apr 25, 2011 | 2:44 am

  21. sister says:

    Yes, you can have truly baby lamb for Easter! Went to Astoria for a quarter of one, milk fed, only a couple of weeks old. Might freak non-carnivores out but it was really delicious, just roasted for one hour. The Greeks like it well done but we had it pink. Remember, the Italians even offer unborn lamb…

    Apr 25, 2011 | 5:30 am

  22. Footloose says:

    Sister, I shrugged off Aristotle Onassis’ fondness for unborn lamb and calves as malicious hearsay. Now that cries out to heaven in its heartlessness.

    Apr 25, 2011 | 6:25 am

  23. josephine says:

    Happy Easter MM and family. Re Easter lamb, yes here in Europe lamb is plentiful now and quite a bit cheaper than at other times, but these were born in around November and because of the cold were raised indoors. The best lamb is therefore available from June onwards because these are allowed to grow up outdoors and graze which makes their meat a lot tastier. When I return to Manila each year in June or July to work in the family business, I always take a small suitcase of French lamb which is particularly good then! Not frozen either, just chilled – it keeps quite nicely in the aircraft hold.

    Apr 25, 2011 | 7:03 am

  24. Betchay says:

    Fantastic color combination!Happy Easter to you and your family!

    Apr 25, 2011 | 11:21 am

  25. Anne :-) says:

    Where are the lilies?

    Apr 25, 2011 | 1:24 pm

  26. Marketman says:

    Anne, whoops, didn’t photograph the white lilies. josephine, hmmm, thanks for confirming the November birthdates for the “spring lamb”… :) Footloose, don’t worry, I will NOT explore unborn piggies… Mike, placements are made out of cotton jacquard? and I think French in origin. They have an oriental motif in blue and white. And were purchased at 80% off at a Williams Sonoma outlet. :) Sleepless, peonies in your garden? Cool. lookie, thanks…

    Apr 25, 2011 | 1:43 pm

  27. Lex says:

    hi MM,

    i’ve been reading your blogs for quite sometime already and i’ve been discovering tips and guidelines anything and everything about flowers in Dangwa which is helpful for me.thanks for that! just want to ask if is it still better and cheaper to go to dangwa and buy flowers on June which is month of weddings, is it a smart thing to do? or i’ll just make reservations a month before the occasion to make a deal for less?..your reply would be a great help for me,thanks! :)

    Apr 25, 2011 | 2:49 pm

  28. Marketman says:

    Lex, Dangwa is as close to a wholesale market for flowers as you will find. Prices fluctuate, but except for say Valentine’s, Mother’s Day, and other such holidays, the prices are very reasonable. Yes, heading to Dangwa in June and purchasing flowers in bulk is a good idea if you want to pay the least amount of money. But remember that you need to have the blooms arranged and transported etc. so you may not WANT to be doing that with all the other wedding arrangements in the final days or hours. If I may suggest, assign a point person or a trusted friend of yours to handle the flowers. They should know what your budget is, what flowers you like, what arrangements you will need and who will arrange them. They have to ensure that they will be at the venue on time and to the standards you expect. Doing your own flowers for your own wedding might be a bit much. In addition to Dangwa, I buy wholesale at Puentespina Farms at the Manila Seedling Bank in Quezon City. Also, King Louis Farms in the same area. You can order specialty blooms here ahead of time. Stick to a budget, as you can easily blow a phenomenal amount on blooms if you don’t watch it. :)

    Apr 25, 2011 | 3:29 pm

  29. MP says:

    Hi MM

    The flower arrangements were spectacular, the table setting was, as expected, classy. But I was more drawn to the painting on your wall. Do you mind letting me know who the artist is/where you got it from?

    Apr 26, 2011 | 1:56 am

  30. Shalimar says:

    Am somewhere in north Sicily heaing to Taormina then Greece can’t wait to eat lamb chops when in Athens doubt about a day off though!,,Lovely flowers

    Apr 27, 2011 | 1:07 am

  31. paula says:

    wow… lovely flowers.. I miss going to Dangwa..

    Apr 28, 2011 | 11:28 am

  32. trax says:

    every time I see you post pics of hydrangeas, all i can think is one of these days i’ll be able to get them as well. do you have a specific shop in dangwa where you get them? the placements are great. My wife would envy those placements. she loves oriental designs.

    Apr 28, 2011 | 12:38 pm

  33. Eileen says:

    MM, I recently found discovered that you can also buy hydrangeas in some of the stalls at Manila Seedling Bank. I bought some hydrangeas as well during the Easter week and got them for P55/stem (which is slightly cheaper than the P65 at Dimasalang)! :)

    May 7, 2011 | 4:13 pm


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