Hydrangeas are practically an epidemic in the Hamptons in the summer. They’re one of the most popular flowers we sell. And for good reason. Their enormous showy blossoms come in a huge variety of colors and they’re amazingly long-lived. They also have a very long season here with blooms appearing all summer long. To make the most of hydrangea season, we’ve arranged them in every conceivable container. But for a centerpiece, which must be low enough that everyone at the table can see over it, here’s how we do it.
The first step in our centerpiece is to use clear florist tape, which you can find at your local florist. And yes, if you live near us, The Bridgehampton Florist sells florist’s tape. Using the tape, form a cross hatch pattern by criss-crossing the empty and dry bowl at 2-3 inch intervals. After you’ve your grid, take the tape and go around the edge of the bowl sealing the grid securely. Next, carefully add hot water to the container. Hydrangeas are the only flower I know that thrive only when you use the hottest tap water in whatever container you put them in.
I trim the lower leaves but keep some leaves closest to the head of the flower to provide a dark green contrast to the flowers. I start around the edge of the container. I make sure the natural curl to the stem is downward, and under water. The crisscrossing stems helps hold the center hydrangeas in place.
And voilà ! Our centerpiece is done! Now, the hardest part about this arrangement in this very shallow container is getting from the flower room to the dining table without spilling!