Learn to Create an Ocean and Beach Centerpiece with Succulents and Flowers
by Kit Wertz
Kit Wertz of Flower Duet entered the Mayesh Wholesale Florist Design Stars Contest with this video entry. She shows you how to create a beach and ocean-inspired centerpiece using succulents, Tillandsias and fresh flowers.
Mayesh Design Star Background
I entered a contest to be a video host for Mayesh Wholesale Florist, our main supplier of wholesale flowers which has its headquarters in Los Angeles. We love working with our local sales specialists at LAX Mayesh, Toni and Jessica, who have helped us create some beautiful events and are always grateful for Steve and Sean’s assistance at our local Torrance Mayesh.
Whenever we need a big order of specialty flowers, Mayesh delivers! Toni, Jessica and Steve help us find the hard to locate items such as an order of 450 stems of white Hydrangea for an event in March this year, as well as every day needs like Garden Roses, Seeded Eucalyptus and mini Calla Lilies. Whatever we need, they can pretty much find it for us and for that, we are truly grateful.
We start all our monthly group tours downtown at the Los Angeles Flower district at the Mayesh location because they have such a comprehensive selection of flowers for sale throughout the year. It’s a great way to get our feet wet at the market and lets our tour participants quiz us on all the unusual and beautiful flowers they have to offer to the public and trade.
For the past two years, Mayesh has engaged a florist who hosts monthly video webisodes on their website in order to highlight the new products they offer. This gives an opportunity for florists around the country to see what’s available (they ship nationwide) and see what the latest trends are in floral design for weddings, events and in retail shops.
We can’t recommend Mayesh highly enough and I would be proud to represent that great business as one of its next Design Star hosts. Wish me luck! The finalists will be announced September 10th and public voting will commence. You’ll get to help choose the next Mayesh Design Star…so stay tuned. We’ll let you know if I’m a lucky finalist! Watch the video here and see the flower recipe below.
Ocean and Beach Inspired Centerpiece Video How-To
The Crassula, ‘Living Coral’ is complemented by the vibrant green of the Trachelium in this design.
For the video contest entry, I had to create a design while narrating. I knew I wanted to create a centerpiece that would feature succulents, some coral and a couple of cute little air plants (Tillandsias). I went to Mayesh to see what other flowers I could purchase to mimic undersea creatures and plants for this design!
At Mayesh I was lucky enough to find beautiful green Berzillia Berries, super fresh Green Jade Trachlium, gorgeous bi-color pink and white standard Carnations and a vibrant stem of Asclepias ‘Moby Dick.” I also picked up Bear Grass (to mimic beach dune grass), a lovely plumed grass that is prevalent this time of year at the market and finally some just-budded Pieris Japonica.
Watch how I put it together to be an all-around centerpiece that would look great on a 72-inch round table. If this were for an actual event, I would accent it with some small pieces of driftwood and white sea stars. Finally, I would add some votive candles if the event were to take place in the evening.
Flower Recipe for Beach Centerpiece
At left, are air plants called Tillandsias. At right, is a succulent with purple and pink tinged leaves that are great with the pink featured in the Carnation and Asclepias heads.
- 14 stems Bi-color Carnation of Dark Pink and White (to mimic the pink sand beaches of Barbados)
- 1 stem of coral colored Asclepias ‘Moby Dick’
- 9 stems of green Berzillia Berries
- 6 stems of green Jade Trachelium
- 2 small Tillandsias or “Air Plants” (These live a long time and don’t need very much water! Make sure you educate your customer on how to care for these. See our in-depth aricle on working with Tillandsias.)
- 5 purple/pink medium sized Succulent rosettes (Echeveria or Graptoveria would work well; Mayesh sells many varieties of Succulent rosettes)
- 5 stems of ‘Mother of Thousands’ Kalanchoe Succulents (these are very easy to grow in your own garden)
- 1 large stem of Crassula ‘Living Coral’ (also easy to grow in the garden)
- 1/3 bunch of Bear Grass
- 5 stems of a Plume-type grass
- 5 stems Pieris Japonica
by Flower Duet
We’ve had a busy summer and would like to show you a few events we had at our area venues including Terranea Resort, Palos Verdes Golf Club and La Venta Inn. Enjoy and be inspired to come to one of our classes this fall.
Brunch Meeting at Terranea Resort – Theme: Garden Flowers
We were asked to create 6 centerpieces and 4 cocktails for this event. The theme was garden flowers and the rest was up to us! Casey created the short and tall centerpieces we did for each table. We collaborated on the short “cocktail” designs and Kit created the birdcage toppers and surrounding wreaths. We did not elect to put any flowers inside the cages. We did put a little ceramic bird in each cage, but felt like he could escape if he wanted to fly around the grounds of Terranea!
Featured above was a morning brunch of event professionals and the theme was Garden flowers. So, we used Garden roses, Hydrangea, Astilbe, Seeded Eucalyptus, Freesia, and Cymbidium Orchids.
August Morning Wedding at La Venta Inn – Theme: White with Apricot Flowers
It was another beautiful day at La Venta Inn in Palos Verdes Estates with a bride who asked us to do her bouquets, corsages, boutonnieres and arch decoration. (They used balloons for their centerpieces.)
The color theme was simple using white, green and coral accents. We used White Hydrangea and Champagne roses for the arch that was suspended on two garlands of Salal which we ordered from Mayesh. We used coral-colored Viburnum berries for the corsage accents and White Calla Lilies and Roses for the bouquets. The bridesmaids bouquets were accented with Lily Grass.
August Afternoon Wedding at Neighborhood Church and Reception at Palos Verdes Golf Club – Theme: White Wedding/Pink and Yellow Reception
Casey shows off her creation for a fun-loving bride who wanted a BIG bouquet full of Lilies, Roses and Mums!
For this August bride in Palos Verdes Estates, we created white bouquets for her bridal party and a pink and yellow reception theme.
Flower Duet picked up this lovely bouquet collection, To Have & To Hold: Magical Wedding Bouquets, at a local book sale last weekend and even though it’s a few years old, the designs are still quite relevant for today’s bride. It’s worth a second look and if you’re lucky, you can pick up a used copy for a bargain!
We think you’ll love the imaginative use of vegetables, fruit and even chili peppers in some of the bouquets! Check it out!
This sure looks real, but it’s cast resin.
Where to purchase coral: Save-On Crafts.com
Add the finishing touch to your beach or ocean-themed event by including artificial coral or this grapewood that can mimic driftwood in your decorating. The coral is made with resin and looks like the real thing! I used something like this in my how-to floral design video on how to create a beach and ocean themed centerpiece. The grapewood branches are sandblasted, so they look like sunbleached driftwood.
Where to purchase grapewood: Save-On Crafts.com
Ocean-Themed Props at Wasabi Green Downtown LA
You can find lots of ocean-themed props downtown at the Los Angeles Floral district at a vendor called Wasabi Green. We featured them in a past floral design newsletter. You can find sea glass and sea shells there as well as grapewood. Their phone number is: 213-629-0068.