My husband and I recently took a trip to Western Washington to visit my sister. The first day, she took us to a lovely nursery in Mount Vernon, right in the middle of the tulip festival area. This nursery had an amazing array of greenhouses and open areas full of every type of flower, shrub, succulents and tree that you could imagine. They also had a great gift shop that housed gardening books and supplies, as well as soaps, seasonal decor, and antiques. One of the things that really caught my eye were a variety of fall pots with a variety of peppers, kale, flowers, and pumpkins. They were wonderful and I was inspired. So today, I am putting together a couple of my own version of these fall arrangements, to inspire you to create one of your very own.
First, start with a flower pot or container of your choice. Many of the arrangements at Christensen’s nursery were in terra cotta pots, which are inexpensive and blend nicely with autumnal colors. But obviously, you can use any color, size or type that you have on hand, and of course, the larger the container, the greater variety of plantings you can add to your arrangement.
Next, collect a variety of small plants. These can include small edible pepper plants in shades of red or orange, miniature mums in yellow or orange, kale in various shades, pansies for a splash of purple, and succulents or other greens that will fill your container. You may even have some foliage from your outdoor pots that you could upcycle into your fall collage arrangement. Using the same formula that works so well with large outside pots, you may want to include a thriller (something tall), a filler (items that are low and full) and a spiller (something that hangs over the edge.)
Finally, add each of your plantings to your container with potting mix, making sure the arrangement looks nice from every angle. As a final flourish, you can leave room for small pumpkins, gourds, and pinecones to nestle in amongst the plantings. These arrangements are so easy and inexpensive to put together, and the possibilities and variety of plantings are almost endless. Kept low enough, I think they would also make lovely centerpieces for your Thanksgiving or kitchen table.
For the two containers I did today, I matched the colors with where I was going to put them. For the dining room, which has a new palette of greens and whites (blog post on that to follow!) I used the white pumpkins and white pot. For the entry credenza, I used the yellow mums, terra cotta pot, and orange pumpkins and gourds. I actually like them both, and I wanted to show how you can change the entire feel of the arrangement, just by the colors and container you select.
All of the plants used in my two containers were purchased in Mt. Vernon and made the 5 hour drive in the back of our SUV. They were out of the cute little orange and red miniature peppers, but I think they still turned out very nice. As the days go on, they will only get fuller and prettier, as the pansies bloom, the mum opens up more, and the plants droop over the sides.
One of the things I love about visiting new places like this lovely nursery in the Skagit Valley, is the opportunity to be inspired by the beauty and creativity in the unfamiliar. In the midst of a quarantine, opportunities to safely visit new locales have been few and far between. It was such fun on this visit to discover nurseries, parks, and even an amazing pumpkin patch, that all breathed some new life into my creativity. For me, when inspiration strikes, I get very excited to share it with you. I hope you will enjoy planting a fall arrangement for yourself as much as I did!