Wild violet centrepieces


Wild violets

You gotta love wildflowers. They’re so free and easy. Case in point: wild violets. Each winter through spring these pee-wee perennials form prostrate mats of creeping stems with dainty purple flowers. I know they’re tenacious (lawn enthusiasts may despise them), but I adore their diminutive good looks as they make their way across the garden floor.

Turns out they make great cut flowers too. Of a sort. Check out this cute little DIY over at Design Sponge. All you need are old aperitif glasses, several wild violets (the sweet violet Viola odorata is perfect) and moss (sphagnum moss works just as well). Go to it!

Teach tulips to sit up


Parrot tulip

Tulips often misbehave as cut flowers. They bend and contort as they continue to grow. To straighten them up, cut stems on an angle, then roll each flower tightly in newspaper, extending it above the blooms but leaving the lower third of the stems free. Stand in a vase of cool water in a cool spot for two to three hours. Unwrap to reveal upright tulips.