Cruise the aisles of your favorite garden center to find a variety of bulbs forced and ready to display. Blooming weeks before their in-ground counterparts, these much-anticipated blossoms lift our spirits and brighten our homes. To get the look shown here, protect a holiday punch bowl with a plastic container, then pack in a dozen hyacinths preplanted in soil. Lightly water, and top with moss.
For this festive centerpiece we grouped blue hybrid delphiniums and purple anemones against white stocks and tulips. Touches of silvery dusty miller and seeded eucalyptus provide contrast and texture, and succulents from a garden center give an unexpected twist. For a little height—without blocking the view—we added simple twigs from the yard.
These cheery blooms are easy to grow, require minimal care once established, and yield plenty of flowers for cutting. For quick arranging into a casual bouquet, like the one shown here, place large sunflowers in container first. Then add cockscombs, a great filler that provides texture. Tuck in as many zinnia blooms as possible and finish with small gomphrenas flowers to accent.
To create this arrangement, we used billowy hydrangeas, plumbagos, cornflowers, and scabiosas for visual heft. We then filled in with salvias, cinerarias, and 'Techno Heat' lobelias to add texture. The result? A casual centerpiece with a vibrant blue palette that makes for a tranquil focal point.
Much like a Southern girl can stay fresh-faced despite the heat (nose powdering should be considered a regional art form), these fiery blooms stand up to our August scorchers. For this display, we snipped dahlia and dahlia buds, lantana, and zinnia to form a loose cluster. Yellow Billy buttons and calendula from a local florist round out the mix. Bonus: Including yet-to-bloom buds ensures an arrangement with staying power.