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Many flowers are pretty, but too evanescent to use in displays/corsages - once picked, flowers like violets rapidly wilt. Displays are limited to very durable flowers that last long after being cut.
Many flowers grow just fine rooted in cracks in the sidewalk or other very small spaces. I propose
that fragile flowers like violets be grown in long tubes the size of a soda straw. Once they bloom, the entire straw with plant is used in the bouquet/corsage. The plant remains viable, the flower beautiful.
I could have sworn that I saw people wearing flowers in test tubes somewhere, but I could not google it. Maybe this is baked.
Have you seen roses in test-tubes?
Google on "growing flowers in test tubes" for quite a bit more information on micropropagation, miniature hydroponic systems, and growing other floral varieties including orchids and african violets in test tubes. [jurist, Oct 04 2004]
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||+ just 'cos I love violets
||VW Beetles always had (maybe still have?) plastic flowers in test tubes on the dash board. It's not the same thing, but maybe that's what you're remembering? Neat idea though.
||+ just for the use of the word "evanescent"