While the calendar page has turned to September, there are plenty of warm, summer days still ahead for us in North Carolina! Fall is my favorite season and I’m ready for all things pumpkin, warm plaid layers, and cozy meals with the flavors of fall on the menu!
And I’m waiting not-so-patiently for pumpkins to arrive at the garden centers and for leaf-peeping weather!
Flowers and pumpkins are two of my favorite things and I love to combine the two for a pumpkin vase centerpiece for fall or Thanksgiving. Since pumpkins aren’t available yet, I repurposed my pumpkin soup tureen as vase, serving up flowers instead of soup for the table!
Sunny and warm is our typical weather pattern for the next month, so cheery sunflowers and a farmhouse plaid tablecloth provide a bright transition from summer to fall for an early September table.
Faux maple leaf placemats frame white chargers and white and gold luxe pumpkin plates. . .
And farmhouse plaid and leaf and acorn napkins are paired with copper pumpkin napkin rings.
Amber stemware provides a golden autumn glow with curved bell-shaped goblets, that mimic the ribs of the pumpkins.
Labor Day marks the end of summer and a last hurrah for weekend boaters until Memorial Day next year, and fall is our favorite time of year to dine outdoors by the water, after the heat and humidity of summer, enjoying a quiet lake view.
To repurpose the pumpkin tureen as a vase, I cut a piece of chicken wire, bending the corners and edges to fit inside to support the flowers stems.
Sunflowers, Alstroemeria, Hypericum Berries and Solidaster from the grocery store, join clippings from the shrubs for filler, to create a blooming pumpkin tureen.
To help your flower arrangements last, condition your flowers before arranging them if possible, as soon as you bring them home from the grocery store or after cutting them. Cut flowers and foliage from your garden or yard in the morning for maximum hydration and when they’re not water stressed from the heat. Strip the leaves that would be below the waterline, removing the excess foliage, and damaged petals and recut the stems at a 45 degree angle for maximum water uptake.
Place them in a clean bucket with room temperature water and some floral preservative and let them sit several hours or ideally, overnight.
If you don’t have any commercial floral preservative to add to your water, you can make your own to help your cut flowers last longer. Here’s an easy formula I use to help prolong the life of cut flowers:
Mix one part lemon-lime soda (regular, not diet) to three parts water, along with 1/2 teaspoon of bleach. The citric acid in the soda helps the water travel up the stems to the flowers more rapidly, while providing food in the form of sugar. The bleach helps fight the growth of bacteria, allowing the flowers to stay hydrated and fresh.
Ciroa Gold Luxe Pumpkin Plates / HomeGoods, last year
Mini White Pumpkins, Tablecloth, Napkins / HomeGoods
Maple Leaf Placemats / Pier1
Flatware / Mikasa Cameo Gold
Amber Goblets / Mikasa French Countryside
Pumpkin Soup Tureen / Better Homes and Gardens, Walmart, several years ago
Gold Pumpkin Napkin Rings / Hobby Lobby
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