A Gift of Winter White Roses
Sweet Peas

Centerpiece Rose Bouquet


Pink Gruss an Aachen in a detail from our centerpiece bouquet.

It’s the third day of New Year 2009 and here I am posting the how-tos from 2008’s Thanksgiving centerpiece. I didn’t make time for it last year, but now that the garden is barren, and I’m already longing for roses, why not luxuriate in these beauties.

On November 27, my garden offered sumptuous roses in many colors – red, magenta, peach, pale pink, yellow, deep burgundy. You might wonder how so many brilliant divas might harmonize together in one centerpiece.


Grouping the roses by color does the trick and avoids a spotty, jumbled look. Figure out where and what color to start with and then place the rest of the colors by whim and intuition. It also helps to have a stunning filler like these red-leafed grape leaves.


Vitis vinifera ‘Purpurea’
is one of my favorite plants. It doesn’t start out this dark – the first leaves are silvery olive. It grows on our front fence near red roses. Each of its many growth stages is a thrill.


Here's one side of the finished bouquet. The narrow copper container only measures  9" long x 3.5" wide x 4.5" high.

Notice how far the bouquet extends beyond the container’s boundaries. Since our dining table would be a long rectangle, I tried to make it overlap at each end as much as I could. The piece turned out to have two distinct personalities. Guests had fun choosing which roses they wanted to face. I sat on the pink side.


The peach-burgundy side has a totally different look.

Rose arranging, like good cooking, requires quality ingredients– nice container, great filler, and ample, fresh blooms. Some of the roses included: Redcoat, Pat Austin, Apricot Nectar, Yves Piaget, Pink Gruss an Aachen, and The Prince. One lemon, a few pomegranates, and Rugosa and Kathleen hips rounded out the mix.


The assembled materials ready for arranging.

Grouping colors and similar blooms works well with all kinds of flowers, not just roses. Large and loose bouquets also work with this method. The arranging process becomes more streamlined, with fewer decisions.