At the Table: Hydrangeas, Butterflies, Bunnies and Birds

Lakeside table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

 Summer has definitely arrived in North Carolina judging by the heat and humidity. . .oh how we’re missing the cooler days of May.

I set this table last week dashing outside to enjoy a window sunshine between rain showers. . .

Endless Summer Hydrangeas | © #hydrangeas #flowers

Endless Summer Hydrangeas are loving our abundance of rain!

 Hydrangea centerpiece in urn | © #spring #alfresco #hydrangeas #tablescapes

I cut some hydrangeas and hosta leaves to place in a garden urn as a centerpiece for the table.

Flower arranging with chicken wire | ©

The urn is not watertight, so I placed a plastic container inside it and secured it with waterproof floral tape. A piece of chicken wire makes for easy flower arranging to support the stems and is an eco-friendly alternative to wet floral foam as it is reusable.

Garden flower arrangement with hydrangeas and hosta | © #flowers #hydrangeas

A quilt provides a foundation for the table with a blooming patchwork of calico squares and sprays of embroidered flowers.

Alfresco spring table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Notice anything missing? The stemware! I was in a hurry to beat the rain showers in the forecast and didn’t even notice their absence until I was editing my photos. . .gah! We’re still social distancing and not entertaining so this table was an opportunity to play with dishes and to keep my tablescaping skills honed. . .clearly I need the practice!

Alfresco spring table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Assorted salad plates from Williams-Sonoma add some color and pattern layered on white dinner plates and carved wood chargers. . .

Bird salad plate and quilt tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

In addition to the hydrangeas all my favorites have gathered at the table. . .

Bird pillow and salad plate | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes


Bluebird at birdhouse | ©

Butterflies. . .

Butterfly salad plate and quilt tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Butterfly pillow and salad plate | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Monarch Butterfly | ©

And bunnies. . .

Alfresco spring table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Bunny salad plate and quilt tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

The bunnies are currently enjoying the all-you-can-eat-buffet by the Potting Shed.

Bunny eating sweet potato vine from planter | ©

Pot napkin ring with flowers | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

White washed terracotta pot napkin rings are paired with floral print napkins. . .

Pot napkin ring with flowers | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

I tucked in some spray roses and bits of hydrangeas in the napkin rings so the pots appear to be planted.

Pot napkin rings blooming with flowers | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Lakeside table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Table Details:

Spring Garden Salad Plates / Williams-Sonoma, several years ago

Dinner Plates / Paula Deen Whitaker, Target, several years ago

Flatware / Portmeirion Botanic Garden

Quilted coverlet / Bed, Bath & Beyond, several years ago, used here

Chargers / Pier 1, several years ago

Pillows / Pottery Barn, several years ago

Floral Napkins & Napkin Rings /  HomeGoods, several years ago

Alfresco spring table with hydrangeas and quilt as a tablecloth | © #spring #alfresco #tablescapes

Thank you for indulging my love of flowers and dishes and tablescaping faux pas. ;)

I hope you’re enjoying some sunshine and staying cool. ♥

Garden flower arrangement with hydrangeas and hosta | © #flowers #hydrangeas

Thank you for your visit, sharing with:

 Between Naps on the Porch

  29 comments for “At the Table: Hydrangeas, Butterflies, Bunnies and Birds

  1. Donna
    June 10, 2020 at 9:03 am

    Sweet. . . .I had to take a closer look at the napkin rings because they are the icing on the cake. The centerpiece is delightful.

  2. Kathy Menold
    June 10, 2020 at 9:04 am

    Summer has definitely come to N.C. and my flowers are loving it I have a huge bouquet of yellow and white Asiatic lilies on my hearth and just came in with an armful of Gladiolus and some early Dahlias to arrange in a tall leaded glass vase. Talking about storms here for the next couple of days so thought I would enjoy my garden inside. All that rain we had last month certainly made for a beautiful June garden.

  3. franki parde
    June 10, 2020 at 9:05 am

    What a year for hydrangea…best I’ve had yet!! Course have to spray with “Repell-Al” to “keep” but they are prolific…counted over 550 blossoms ( counted 2 plantsxtotal.) franki

  4. Linda Stolk
    June 10, 2020 at 9:19 am

    Your hydrangeas are incredible. Love the butterfly pillow and napkin rings.

  5. Clara
    June 10, 2020 at 9:29 am

    Your hydrangeas are beautiful Mary! Love the summer tablescape using the bunnies, butterflies and birds. The addition of flowers in the napkin rings is a wonderful idea! So sweet! It’s definitely summer here too. You slice your way through the humidity! Enjoy your day! Clara ♥️

  6. Chloe
    June 10, 2020 at 9:58 am

    You have such an incredible eye for mixing patterns and colors. I always enjoy seeing your designs. Thank you for your posts.

  7. Ann Woleben
    June 10, 2020 at 10:09 am

    The quilt is beautiful and perfect for your table setting. I, too, am thrilled with our hydrangeas this summer. I continue to use deer repellent so that I can enjoy the flowers in our garden, along with the hostas.

  8. Virginia
    June 10, 2020 at 11:13 am

    I just love your table especially the beautiful quilt and nature inspired dishes. My hydrangeas have also flourished this spring thanks to frequent rains. I cut blue Endless Summer Hydrangeas Saturday and filled a bowl for my breakfast room table using your alum method, they are still beautiful this morning, thanks for the advice.

  9. Kate
    June 10, 2020 at 11:46 am

    You definitely have not lost your table skills – beautiful!

  10. Dawn Franks
    June 10, 2020 at 11:53 am

    So beautiful as always. Thank you for providing such inspiration in such a beautiful way

  11. June 10, 2020 at 1:11 pm

    i like the little planter napkin rings Mary! It’s 90 and muggy in Philly too… Stay cool:@)

  12. Stacey
    June 10, 2020 at 1:48 pm

    Love the napkin pot holders! Such a clever idea! So hot and muggy here in NC! Hello Summer! Stay cool!

  13. Tricia
    June 10, 2020 at 2:32 pm

    Your Table Is a Delight!! And I love the real bunny picture. What a great photo. We have them here in the yard each day. Always a joy to see!

  14. June 10, 2020 at 3:04 pm

    Oh you are hot Mary! The hydrangeas are stunning and beautiful with your sweet birds and bunnies~ I LOVE the planted pot napkin rings, extra brilliant!! Stay cool~

  15. Alma-Lillian
    June 10, 2020 at 3:22 pm

    There is something so soothing and reassuring, in these tumultuous times. Thank you.

  16. June 10, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    I would never have noticed the missing stemware, Mary, because I was focused on everything else. Those plates…sigh….and the quilt…another sigh, and your gorgeous hydrangeas…and darling napkin idea…so pretty. I love it all. Too bad about those pesky bunnies having a buffet on your potato vine, though! Happy gardening and playing with dishes. 💓

  17. June 10, 2020 at 11:13 pm

    Mary, this is a beautiful table. The hydrangeas are so pretty mixed with the hosta leaves. The WS salad plates, planter napkin rings, and the sweet quilt make a lovely presentation, and the glassware isn’t even missed 🥰 Stay cool, we are getting a break for the next 3 days.

  18. Cyndi Raines
    June 11, 2020 at 1:37 am

    Lovely hydrangeas! Beautiful table with the special guests! 🐦🦋🐇🐝 That quilt is a beauty also. I would be in your lake on a floaty! Lol Heat is one thing, but the added humidity does me in everytime, unless I’m in water. I hope my hydrangeas bloom this year instead of just lovely green leaves. Waiting for my peonies to open, should happen any day now. Thank you Mary for another lovely post. Hope you get some cooler weather.

  19. June 11, 2020 at 8:18 am

    Beautiful, living our days like twins, I was out photographing my hydrangeas in 90 plus temps too, they are so stunning! I saw my first butterfly this week too, I finally have some colorful flowers to draw them in, funny the things you take for granted, my old house was smothered with them.

    Thought of you instantly, saw my first squirrel in my garden in my lifetime! It was being dive bombed by blackbirds… Wonderful table, I feel I am getting closer to playing in the garden the more we finish projects, for now still in the work mode, but another year and I should be feeling settled ☺

  20. Bonnie Morgan
    June 11, 2020 at 3:24 pm

    Pretty table, Mary. I had not noticed there were no glasses until you mentioned it. I was gazing at your beautiful hydranges. Would you believe out of 80 bushes I may have 10 blooms? It has been very sad and I guess the early warmth for several weeks then several hard freezes did it. No one has many hydrangea blooms at all. I look forward to them all year but it didn’t happen.😥 this year! We have had a good amount of rain recently and I see some buds on one endless summer. I keep hoping more buds will appear.
    Everything you chose for your table works beautifully. I love the flowerpot napkin rings and your quilt is lovely.
    Our humidity was terrible yesterday but it is better today.I am with you I miss our May weather. Enjoy your day.

  21. June 11, 2020 at 6:44 pm

    What a beautiful table setting! It looks so inviting and the view is just stunning.

  22. Ellen
    June 12, 2020 at 8:12 am

    Beautiful table!! Didn’t miss the stemware….my favorite thing is those napkin rings…but alas they are probably no longer available…I loved the flowers you tucked in!! Heat and humidity gone just sunshine!!! HAPPY DAYS!! 😍🌺☀️

  23. Ellen
    June 12, 2020 at 8:17 am

    Beautiful table!!

  24. Rita C.
    June 12, 2020 at 1:04 pm

    It’s always a pleasant surprise to see your color combinations, textiles and arrangements at the table, Mary. Lol. love your comment of needing practice with forgetting the stemware. I didn’t even notice at first! I love quilts as tablecloths, and that’s a true beauty. Your combos of actual butterfly, bird and bunny (I chuckled again at that critter’s brazen display of thievery) with table elements and pillows are just perfect! Love that lakeside, too. I sometimes still dream about a place on the lake…….
    We had a super hot Wed, but rain that night brought back a really nice Thurs and, so far, Friday. Have a great weekend!

  25. nonie
    June 14, 2020 at 12:09 pm

    I love my endless summer hydrangea, I have a question. I am not sure where to cut them for a bouquet, I don’t want to cut the stem in the wrong place but I would love to use some blooms in a table setting.
    Nice of you to provide bunny food!

    • June 14, 2020 at 12:18 pm

      Hi Nonie, Don’t worry about where to cut them. Cut your stems where you normally would for your bouquet. ESH bloom on old and new wood so they’ll bloom again this year. ♥

  26. June 15, 2020 at 1:07 pm

    I could definitely choose the table by the lake over any restaurant. I often thought how wonderful it is to reflect upon the day with a great drink and your loved one seated at the table. Until you mentioned it, I did not notice the missing glasses…was focusing on the beauty of the table setting, the flowers in the flower pot napkin rings and oh that quilt! I have noticed lots of bunnies at our new house vs. our former one…but no foliage in the mouths.

  27. June 18, 2020 at 2:41 am


  28. August 10, 2020 at 12:01 pm

    So many great photos to look at. I love your potting shed, it is so adorable. Thank you for posting this piece and photos.

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