Log In   ·   Become A Member

Sumptuous Flowers For Hamptons Spring And Summer Tables

Tightly constructed arrangements came in a range of sizes at the Philadelphia Flower Show. Roses and hydrangeas were mainstays of many. (Photo: Anne Halpin)

A jewel-toned creation with red roses, purple orchids and poppies and black viburnum berries is set off by deep green ivy foliage. (Photo: Anne Halpin)

The season for entertaining in the Hamptons will be under way before we know it. Fresh floral arrangements are a gracious addition to party décor, of course. Floral fashions come and go, and one place to look for inspiration is the annual Philadelphia Flower Show in early March. This world-class exhibition showcases the work of top landscape designers, floral design artists and amateur gardeners and designers who compete for trophies, ribbons and bragging rights in a host of horticultural and design classes.

This year's theme was "Brilliant!"— a salute to all things British— with plants and flowers, gardens, natural landscapes and culture of our neighbors across the Pond. The garden exhibits were lovely and well executed (one particularly beguiling display featured many different varieties of clematis weaving their way through evergreens, clambering over walls and arbors and sprawling over the ground). But the real showstoppers this year, at least for me, were the flower arrangements and table pieces. There were a lot of them, and two trends dominated the displays: sumptuous, dense designs and all-white, and elegant arrangements in jewel tones of rich red, royal purple and emerald green.

A fanciful "arbor" of vines and flowers, anchored in golden urns, is designed to float above the heads of dinner guests. (Photo: Anne Halpin)

In bowls, vases, pitchers and urns, in containers high and low, the designs featured tightly packed, dome-shaped compositions of luxurious blossoms that stayed close to the rim of the container. Where more height was wanted, a pedestal vase—rather than tall stems—provided the vertical line.

One breathtaking arrangement in a pedestal urn combined roses, lilies, delphinium, lisianthus and freesia all in pure, fresh white. Too large for a dining table, a piece like this would be perfect for a side table or grand entrance foyer. An exhibition built around the theme of England's crown jewels positioned dense arrangements of deep purple and rich red blossoms along a red-and-purple-striped cloth. Purple-flowered clematis and other vines meandered through the display (an interesting idea for a summer table). Green foliage provided the contrast that intensified the gem-like colors of the flowers.

If you'd like to try your hand at making your own table arrangement, the easiest way to do it is to start with large flowers such as hydrangeas in a clear glass cylinder or bowl (for a round or oval table) or cube (for a square or rectangular table). Start with one flower as the central point. Hold it in your hand, and position other flowers around it in a ring. Aim to create a domed shape, with the central flower a bit higher than the surrounding ones. Bind the flowers together with a chenille pipe cleaner or a rubber band. Then clip the stems with garden shears or pruners to a length that allows the flowers to sit just above the rim of the container.

This creamy white arrangement combines amaryllis, tulips, roses and hydrangeas in a white vase. (Photo: Anne Halpin)

Anne is a writer, editor and professional gardener, and the author of 17 garden, home and nature books. She lives in Hampton Bays.

Related Articles:

Be the first to comment on this article. (Just fill out the form below)

Submit Your Comment

Please note, you are not currently logged in. Your comment will be submitted as a guest.
To submit your comment as a member, please click here.
Your Name:
* Comments will be reviewed and posted in a timely fashion
* All fields are required
What color is the sky?
(For spam prevention, thanks)
Hamptons Carpet One Floor & Home
We pay less,and so do you.With over 1,000 stores in our buying group, we can get the lowest prices from the best flooring manufacturers — and pass the savings on to you.Visit our other locations: Hamptons Carpet One Floor & Home, 675 North Sea Road,Southampton, NY 11968

CP Complete- Landscape Design & Construction
Paul Guillo And Chris Hall Two Of The Most Respected Names In The Community Together, they are partners in CP Complete. They bring their years of experience and integrity to creating and renovating luxury backyards.

Hamptons luxury real estate specialist for 33 years, Andrea Ackerman offers outstanding expertise in the field.
Hamptons luxury real estate specialist for 34 years, Andrea Ackerman offers outstanding expertise in the field. Trusted, experienced and successful, Andrea has solidified herself as the go-to broker of the Hamptons and a wholehearted advocate for her clients. A pioneer in the real estate industry on the East End of Long Island, she is driven by her passion for the business. Andrea is based in the Bridgehampton office of Brown Harris Stevens as a licensed real estate associate broker and consultant. Formerly, a principal partner and Senior Director at Brown Harris Stevens, Andrea now assists in developing their corporate strategy for the Hamptons region, advising other brokers and sales associates, as well as being one of the top producers and listors.

Southrifty Drug 54 Jagger Lane, Southampton Village
Southrifty Drug is a small, neighborhood pharmacy with limited shelf space, and we have to be very selective about which over-the-counter items we carry. As a result you'll find a no nonsense concentration of very effective, high quality and useful products on our shelves. In this new section, we feature a number of these products that we feel are especially worthy of your consideration.

Alex Ferrone Gallery
As the only one of its kind on the North Fork, we exhibit and sell contemporary fine art works by mid-career and emerging artists with an emphasis on photo-based art. Fine art admirers and collectors enjoy opportunities to meet our exhibiting artists at special events including public receptions, Gallery Talks, and workshops.

Alex Ferrone Gallery
As the only one of its kind on the North Fork, we exhibit and sell contemporary fine art works by mid-career and emerging artists with an emphasis on photo-based art. Fine art admirers and collectors enjoy opportunities to meet our exhibiting artists at special events including public receptions, Gallery Talks, and workshops.

Burner Law Group, P.C.
Burner Law Group, P.C. are full service elder law attorneys concentrating in the areas of Estate Planning, Trust and Estate Administration and Litigation, Special Needs Planning, Guardianship and Elder Law. Offices in East Setauket‚ NY, Westhampton Beach, NY, and New York, NY.

Calissa is Mykonos in the Hamptons.
Our menu focuses on seafood and Greek dishes such as salt baked fish, seafood pasta and Mediterranean mezze. Our wine list has been awarded The Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator and boasts the largest selection of rosé in the Hamptons. The name Calissa is derived from the brightest constellation in the summer sky.Our sister restaurants in New York are Amali and Bar Marseille, opening 2020 in the Rockaways. Calissa offers private dining spaces for groups from 10 to 300 people. To plan your next wedding, corporate event or gathering, please email events@calissahamptons.com. 1020 MONTAUK HIGHWAY, WATER MILL

Suburban Propane in Bridgehampton, New York has been serving proudly supporting our community for 90 years.
Suburban Propane has been serving the energy needs for home owners and business in the Hampton’s for decades. We offer friendly service by local professionals you know and trust, plus the peace of mind that comes from knowing we are among the leaders in the industry for safety.