This centerpiece is a combination of cut marigolds, fall foliage and spicy red peppers. It is a bright color combination that is sure to make a splash at your next gathering.
- red peppers
- ‘Black Knight’ alternanthera
- brown sedge (Carex buchanii)
- pumpkin, medium sized
- chicken wire
- shallow vase to hold water inside pumpkin
- carving tools
- jar lid
Cut a hole in the top of the pumpkin that is large enough to fit the vase through. I find it handy to trace the diameter of the vase on the pumpkin to use as a guide.
Remove the seeds and pulp from inside the pumpkin. A jar lid makes this task much easier. Set the pumpkin aside.
Now you need to make a floral frog. This can be done easily and inexpensively with a piece of chicken wire. Simply crumple the chicken wire into a ball and secure it to your vase with floral wire.
Set the vase with the chicken wire floral frog into the pumpkin. Add water to the vase and you are ready to begin arranging your flowers.
First you want to establish the framework of the arrangement by inserting the sedge and bittersweet. You can purchase bittersweet at the florist. If you don’t have either of these plants anything tall and spiky will do. I also like to use things such as wheat, ornamental grasses, liatris or salvias.
Next fill in with the round and full marigold blooms and peppers. Again, you can substitute with what you have on hand.
As a finishing touch add the alternanthera leaves so that they drape over the rim of the pumpkin. Other options are goldenrod, sprigs of ivy, and hyacinth bean vine.
When I place the pumpkin on the table I encircle the arrangement with a few sprigs of bittersweet.
Zinnias are one of my favorite summer flowers. They are so easy to grow. A single packet of seeds will produce enough blooms to enjoy both in the garden and indoors in cut flower arrangements such as this pink, green and lavender bouquet in a watermelon vase.The zinnias are pink ‘Enchantress’, ‘Lavender Giant’ and ‘Envy’, which is green to match the stripes of the watermelon.I think the color mix is dynamite.
You don’t have to grow your own zinnias to duplicate this arrangement.There always seem to be plenty for sale at farmer’s markets or create a bouquet of your own favorite summer blooms.
Pick out a melon of your choice. Choose a good looking melon that fits the scale of the table on which it will be displayed.Look for ones without soft spots or blemishes.
- I’ve found that room temperature watermelons are easier to carve.
- When harvesting fresh flowers leave the stems long, but in this arrangement you will cut the stems relatively short to fill the cavity of the melon.
- Slice off a sliver of the yellow underside of the melon to make a flat surface. This is to help keep the watermelon stable so it doesn’t rock around on the table.
- Next decide on the shape of your melon vase. A basket with a handle is a cute option. Or just lop off the top to create a bowl. For extra pizzazz try cutting a jagged edge around the top.
- Remove the flesh using a melon ball scoop.Scoop out all of the pink and leave about a half-inch of rind so it will hold water.
- Soak a block of floral foam in water and cut it to a size that will fit inside the melon.
- Insert the flowers into the floral foam.
- Because the watermelon is cut on the bottom it’s going to leave a moist spot.When displaying the arrangement put the melon on a pedestal or plate to protect your furniture from being damaged.
The signature flower at Moss Mountain Farm in September is the sunflower. After several months of growing taller and taller the blooms burst open right around the first of the month. They are beautiful both in the garden and as cut flowers.
This sunflower centerpiece has a twist. I paired it with one of my favorite perennials, Dolce® Key Lime Pie heuchera. The color combination of bright yellow and chartreuse is just right for early fall celebrations. After the party is over I will plant the heuchera in the garden.
Materials for the Centerpiece
4 Pots Proven Winners® Dolce® Key Lime Pie Heuchera
Wire Wreath Form
Soak floral foam to build up moisture.
Line the bottom and sides of the wreath form with sheet moss.
Remove the heucheras from their pots and insert, dirt and all, into the wreath form.
Space the four plants evenly around the wreath.
Cut floral form to size and insert into wreath form.
Cut stems short on sunflowers and goldenrod.
Making your way around the wreath insert flower stems into floral foam.
Spear apples with floral picks and insert the picks into the wreath.