Midsummer is a wonderful time. The evenings are bright and warm, and the garden is the ideal place for a pleasant get-together with family and friends. A quick and easy table decoration with flowers and natural materials from the garden will add the finishing touch, and it only takes a minute.
Birgit Nouri, floral stylist and ex proprietor of House of Flowers in Otterup, north Funen, is very familiar with the busy lives lived by consumers and shares volontarily her ideas for "easy plant solutions that look fantastic",
"Consumers today are very conscious of the environment, health and fresh ingredients, and this is a common theme in their choices, " says Birgit Nouri. "But time is in short supply, and the solutions that the consumers choose must also be simple and quick to complete."
Mini-plants make ideal table decorations
While table decorations and plant arrangements help to create the right atmosphere for a garden party, they should also reveal a personal touch, which you can add through the styling and the chosen base.
"Mini-plants make ideal table decorations, and since the range is huge - especially at this time of year - you can always find plants to suit your personal style and taste, " Birgit continues. "Danish mini-plants have a really good root system, which means you can place branches, leaves or other decorations in the soil between them, and if the plants are well watered in advance, the root system will function as a kind of living oasis. Just fill a beautiful dish or a special tray with plants, and you are practically finished."
"But even if it's easy, it's still nice to put your own personal stamp on the plant arrangements, and in this connection it is natural to use nature's own riches. Take a walk around the garden and find some special leaves, such as ferns or hostas, which have an interesting structure and will give form and fullness to the plants they are placed alongside. Similarly, the seed capsules from columbine or grasses, when pushed into the root ball, can help to lend height to the decoration."
"In this way you can conjure up your very own personal plant arrangement, and the message is that you do not have to invest a lot time in it to create something easy and attractive."
Easy table decorations using mini-plants
Suggestion A: Bread basket with sunflower
Place mini-plants, e.g. mini-sunflowers, between pebbles together with Muehlenbeckia and Carex, and garnish with Oriental poppy (Papaver orientale) seedcases with curved stems.
Suggestion B: White sea kale with Dahlia and Sagina
Plant mini-dahlia in the middle of the bowl and surround with a visible rim of chicken wire interwoven with sprigs of birch. Outside, plant Sagina in a ring, to be decorated with white mussel shells between the Sagina plants. Finally, decorate the bowl with two sprigs out of a pomander.
Suggestion C: Mini-kalanchoe in a glass bowl
First, create a bed of "roses" made of oversized common butterbur (Pesasites hybridas). After allowing to rest for an hour, shape the leaves into little green "roses" by bending the edges of the leaves in towards the middle all the way round.
Place the green "roses" close together in a glass bowl of hot water at about 25 degrees, with small pebbles at the bottom. After an hour, the "roses" will be rock hard, and you can insert the mini-Kalanchoe between the leaves. Finally, garnish with Oriental poppy (Papaver orientale) seedpods on stems.
Suggestion D: Sculptural purple table decoration
Plant marguerites (Chrysanthemum frutescens) and Arabian violets (Exacum) in separate purple plant pot holders. Place these in a row. Wire three rows of annual honesty using sewing thread, and place between the plants. Insert Alium seed cases into one pot and bend to create a sculptural shape with the stems.
Quick patio makeover
Pep up your pots for a party. Select solutions that can be quickly and easily planted into pots, and you can create a party atmosphere in a jiffy.