Being invited to the Thanksgiving meal is a gesture of welcome and inclusion in American homes far richer than any giblet gravy- so don’t arrive empty handed. After asking the hostess what you can bring (and picking up an extra bottle of Riesling when they say “just yourself”), be sure to include a small gift to thank the hosts for including you in this special tradition. On a day that’s already filled with delicious foods and bordered by a holiday steeped in gift-giving, it is hard to find just the right thing to thank someone for all the thawing, brining, roasting and washing up they’ll be doing. Make it easy by choosing flowers that will not only be lovely on Thanksgiving day, but will continue to have your hosts thankful through the coming weeks. Paperwhite bulbs (Narcissus papyrus) are the perfect plant to present on this day of gratitude and stuffing yourself.
The day we give thanks for all the good people and good fortune we have in our lives- and then stuff our faces. No matter what your favorite dish is you look forward to seeing around that table each year, the fresh flowers and greens from a lovely Thanksgiving centerpiece will be a delight that everyone will enjoy throughout the long day of eating and for days to come. All sorts of different styles and arrangements can be made to order at your local florist and if you’re heading over to someone’s house for the big meal you can pick one up ready made for the perfect hostess gift. Whether you choose a simple round arrangement or a cornucopia of flowers, a centerpiece will add freshness and flair to the occasion and most come with candles that can be lit to make the meal more elegant and festive. Below are several different styles to choose from, along with tips for making them last longer than the leftovers.
Eating season is here!
Cold weather has come to visit and soon, too, will friends, family and full days dedicated to nothing but cooking and eating. Along with lots of tasty recipes circling around on Pinterest and lots of hungry people around the table, add some fresh blooms that will brighten the room from Turkey Day until the new year with a holiday cactus. Called everything from Thanksgiving cactus to crab cactus, the succulent Schlumbergera truncata and several of its related species are fantastic plants for your own home or that of a hostess during the winter season. Just starting to bloom in late November, these easy to grow houseplants are festive, fun and readily available at your local florists.
Winter came whalloping in this week for many parts of the country, covering fall-blooming flowers with snow and bringing down the temperatures to record-breaking lows. While the winter weather seemed a long time coming this year, with it comes the need to bring the outside in with a fresh bouquet or potted plant to remind us through the short, cold days and chilly nights that spring will come again. Consider the white cyclamen for a frigid day like today. Said to represent warmth in the Victorian language of flowers, its gracefully drooping white blooms and silver-streaked leaves will warm your heart and help you not mind being cooped up in the house on these chilly winter days.
The tradition of wearing a poppy on one’s lapel to honor veterans of war dates back to just after World War I. A Canadian physician, Lieutenant colonel John McCrae, had penned a poem after presiding over the funeral of a friend who had been killed in the Battle of Ypres, where over 120,000 casualties were estimated. The new graves of the many young men who had died stretched on through a field of bright red poppies, and his poem, in Flanders Fields, used the flowers as a metaphor for the spilled blood of war. Published back in London in 1915, the poem quickly became the most popularly recited verse of its era and the red poppy the symbol for the great sacrifices of the armed forces. In 1919, exactly one year after the war ended, November 11th was designated as Remembrance Day (in Commonwealth countries) by King George V and Veteran’s Day in the United States, to honor members of the armed forces- particularly those that gave their lives in defense of their country. The red poppy was worn in recognition of the holiday, but since November is not the typical season for this summer flower, most are made out of paper. If you’d like to honor the service of veterans, past and present, with a fresh flower instead of paper, consider the following blooms that make excellent boutonniere’s to pin to the lapel on this day of remembrance.