Company coming? How about over 800 people?

DSC04391We all know NGC members create the floral arrangements for the H&GT houses each year.  It is not unusual for homeowners to throw a party after the tour because of all the fabulous fresh flower arrangements in their homes. But do we know how to adorn our own homes with florals when we are getting ready to entertain? Here are some tips from several of the NGC members creating florals for this year’s H&GT.

Raynelle Perkins, co-chair of H&GT Florals, stresses that “flower designs should be placed where guests will notice them the most–even a small design in the powder room is pleasing.”

Mary Pulick, co-chair of H&GT Florals, makes the point that a floral design on your dining or kitchen table shouldn’t be too large. To check the size, you should hold your elbow on the table and make a fist. Your arrangement should not be taller than that. On the other hand, no matter where you place arrangements, make sure the container’s size or color is not more important than the flowers. “Don’t rush and just shove a grocery store bouquet in a vase. If you arrange the flowers one by one, the result will be more pleasant looking,” Mary says.  “The one mistake folks make is to not add fresh or more water to the container and the flowers die quickly.”

Gail Pica, one of the club’s most experienced designers, has lots of little tricks. Her favorite tool is a $5 turkey baster for watering her arrangements. She maintains that those packets of preservative really do work, and she even adds it to water she soaks her oasis in. Gail’s one big no-no is to “never re-use oasis”. She gladly shares a couple websites that are great for inspiration and buying supplies: and http//

The Garden District generously donates all the flowers for the 28 arrangements created for the Tour.  It is a wonderful place to purchase flowers and foliage for your own arrangements.  Their cooler bursts with a wide array of stems, plus it only takes two or three days to special order most flowers according to Raynelle. Be sure to thank Garden District for their years of supporting our club when you visit the shop located at 137 10th Street North.