It was obvious from the smiles on their faces as they walked through the Pavilion door, that the Flower Arranging class for new members on October 25, 2019, was going to be a big success. How could one not be affected by the riot of fall flowers in gold, rusts, and oranges that Jeanne Anderson placed in white buckets around the room. As if that were not enough to get your creative juices going, one miniature orange pumpkin and one miniature white pumpkin was placed by each bunch of flowers ready to be decorated.
Jeanne, master floral designer and inspirational leader of the Friends, stood at the front of the room. She demonstrated, as others followed making their own arrangements. Slowly spinning the turntable, Jeanne cautioned, “Put the leaves in the vase first, but be sure that there are no leaves below the water line because they will rot.”
Chrysanthemum tea was served as she explained a few characteristics about the flower. The chrysanthemum, sometimes called ”mum” for short, blooms in late summer and fall. Its flowers come in all colors except blue. It has a short bloom period, usually four to six weeks.
Then there were two more projects to do: arranging the mini orange pumpkin with mini chrysanthemums, berries and scented geranium leaves, and decorating a white mini pumpkin with a variety of small succulents glued to natural moss.
Each new member took their flower arrangements home in a beautiful celadon glass vase.
Recipe for chrysanthemum tea:
Use freshly boiled water that registers between 90 and 100 degrees.
- Rinse out the teacup or pot with the hot water to warm.
- Allow four to five flowers per cup.
- Allow to brew for two to four minutes.
- The Chinese traditionally add rock sugar and wolfberries (goji berries) to their tea.
- The tea can be served hot or cold.
Post and photos by Joan Selwyn
Founding President of the Friends and Friends of Robinson Gardens Board Member