As we celebrate the harvest season, we look for ways to incorporate autumnal touches into our decor. A fun way to do this is by crafting floral arrangements that use seasonal fruits as a natural vase. We can use the abundance of apples, pumpkins, and gourds to create festive containers for cheerful bouquets.
The first step is to find fruits that are firm and unblemished. These will last the longest once they are cut. Be sure to keep in mind the size of your desired flowers when choosing a potential container.
Next you will hollow out your selected produce. Apples tend to be a little softer and can easily be scooped out with everyday utensils. Pumpkins and gourds are generally tough, so use caution when cutting into them. Use whatever tools you would use if you were hollowing a jack-o-lantern. Be sure to save the pumpkin seeds for toasting and snacking.
The goal is to have a cleaned out cavity that can hold water. To extend the life of your pumpkin or gourd, you can place a glass vase inside it to contain the water and flowers. This will slow down the process of the fruit getting soft and soggy.
Once your pumpkin or gourd is hollow, it’s ready to be filled with seasonal flowers. We love chrysanthemums and roses in autumnal colors such as peach, yellow, and burgundy. Hydrangeas in shades of ivory and dusty pink are a great option too.
Apples that feature variegated reds and greens, such as Lady apples, make a beautiful choice for your harvest table. These petite vases can be used to hold a single flower stem or a cluster of berries. Look for vibrant berries from the pyracantha bush, or colorful St. Johns wort.
These fresh vases are also ideal for use with dried flowers, leaves, and acorns. This will allow you to display them even longer than if you use live flowers. You may be able to enjoy your arrangement for a week or more.
Decorated small gourds and apples can also be used as place card holders for your Thanksgiving meal. Many craft stores sell the metal inserts that hold place cards, as well as the cards themselves. Nestle the place card in among the blooms. Guests may even like to take these favors home with them.
Once you see how cute these little vases are, you may want to carry on with this theme. Hollowed out apples and small pumpkins or gourds will also make fun tea light holders. You can use either flameless candles or real tea lights or votives to brighten up your holiday decor.
When your natural vase starts to get soft, be sure to put it outside for the furry friends in your neighborhood. Apples and small pumpkins make an excellent meal for squirrels and chipmunks. Check with local farms to see if they accept donations of larger pumpkins – they make a healthy, tasty treat for the animals.
By using your imagination, apples and pumpkins can be so much more than pie filling. From harvest decor, to your Thanksgiving buffet, and a feast for barnyard critters, this versatile produce will help you celebrate the gathering season in style.