Along the Garden Path: Thanksgiving centerpieces


Thanksgiving is the holiday that puts the dinner table at the center of the celebration. This means there’s no occasion that your floral centerpiece has more opportunity to shine.

If you like a classic, elegant bouquet or a more creative solution for the center of your table, any of these centerpieces make your Thanksgiving dinner a beautiful feast.

If you like simple centerpieces, think of corn kernels in a hurricane vase or any clear vase. Tie a string of ribbon or raffia around the vase. It symbolizes a bountiful harvest and a reason to be thankful.

Instead of raking your leaves into the garbage bags or compost, try stringing up all the beautiful colors of fall for your mantel or runner on your table. All you need is some twine and a really big needle. We enjoy the beauty of foliage and with the autumn leaves being one of the standout symbols of the season, skip flowers altogether and decorate your table with a vase full of radiant foliage instead.

Pine cones aren’t just for Christmas; they are in abundance and use them to make table setting holders for your name cards. Enhance your hard work with an arrangement of beautiful herbs like sage, basil, or chamomile.

Tropical flowers like orchids can make an autumn twist with rich tones of orange, red and gold. If you’re not a fan of earth tones, dahlias feel just as rich and plays nicely with cool colors for the table décor.

Thanksgiving is the biggest food holidays of the year so why not celebrate the bounty by using some less traditional botanicals like artichokes, persimmons, pears, apples, squash, grapes, asparagus, and winter cabbage in an arrangement. You might want to add a few outdoor sticks!

If you still have pumpkins lingering around from Halloween, now is the time to hollow one out and use it as an appropriate holiday vessel for your centerpiece. If you don’t want to hollow it out, glue small sprigs of succulents around the top and stem – add a little reindeer moss and it makes an elegant centerpiece.

Keep in mind to make your arrangement low so your guests can talk across the table. Keep centerpieces below chin height and everyone at your table will be grateful.

For a sense of plenty, use a cornucopia to display seasonal fruits, flowers and foliage. Add a bit of interest to Thanksgiving flowers with blooms and greenery that go beyond the classic petal shape like spider lilies and cockscomb.

The best centerpieces are from nature in your own backyard. Cut some evergreen branches, place pillar candles, pine cones and Clementine’s on a beveled-edge mirror for a nature inspired table arrangement.

Now, your table is set and looking beautiful from your creations, the potatoes have been peeled, the turkey is in the oven, the pies have been made, the cranberry salad has come from your local grocery, and the rolls are ready to go into the oven.

This year we have a new blessing in our family with the birth of Tate David Henry, our seventh great-grandchild born this past month to Todd and Lindsey (Lockhart) Henry and big sister Layna. Thanksgiving is a family time and we are truly blessed with a wonderful family. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

By Charlene Thornhill

Along the Garden Path

Charlene Thornhill is a volunteer citizen columnist, who serves The Daily Advocate readers weekly with her community column Along the Garden Path. She can be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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