A Flower Revolution

Farm to table flowers?

Yes, there’s a new movement toward gathering seasonal flowers and arranging them so the individual beauty of each flower is appreciated.

Gone are the masses of dahlias crammed together in a vase, suffocating in mid-winter after a journey on airplanes and boats from fields far away in Mexico.

Now we gather flowers as they bloom in the early spring, summer and fall. We pick just what is enough from our gardens and fields.

And remarkably we’re starting to realize what the Tea Masters of the last four hundred years have always known.

We arrange the flowers as though they were growing wild in a field. We allow each element of the flower to shine so that the shape of the leaves, the color of the blossom, the delicacy of the blooms are not hidden. In this way we are reminded of the beautiful and fleeting nature of life.

To care for and admire flowers in this way is to re-connect with the natural world. This is our new revolution  and we can extend this sensibility in everything we do.

How to arrange flowers in the Tea Style

How to arrange flowers

How to arrange flowers in the Tea Style To begin, choose an odd number of flowers plus a grass. Each flower should be a different color and shape with a different leaf pattern. Wash and clean the leaves to remove any dirt, and re-cut the stems under water. The water...

Trillium satori

Yesterday, as I was walking through my garden with a friend, she discovered this wonderful and mysterious Trillium - a precious, native orchid. It was hidden away and I had no idea it was in the garden. Did I plant this years ago and forgot about it? A Trillum is...

The last of the Camellias

Winter is over and so too are Camellias. They bloom from December into early April. Here are the last blooms from my plants which I overwinter in a cold room in my house.  

Flowers of late summer

Late summer is here. Goldenrod has appeared which is always the first sign of autumn. Purple loosestrife and Queen Anne's Lace are everywhere in fields. Besides the flowers growing in my own garden, I've been out picking from the roadside. Here's what I picked from my...


In winter a Camellia is the preferred flower in the tearoom. It blooms from October through April. Each flower may last for several days but only the bud is used with a deciduous branch from a shrub or tree such as Viburnam or Fothergilla. The structure of the branch...

Spring wish list

It"s almost February and today it"s snowing. I"m starting to put together my spring wish list.    

Oh joy, oh rapture

Oh joy, oh rapture This is the name of a lily I planted a couple of years ago. I thought the name was kind of arbitrary and wonderfully poetic. I didn't get it until tonight in late July when I walked out into the night, my garden illuminated only by the full moon. I...

June flowers

The basket is in the shape of an upside down Korean gentleman"s hat. The flowers: the first lily of the season, a Penstemon, my favorite Chinese Meadowrue, a Balloon flower and a Miscanthus grass.  

Arrange flowers as if they were growing wild in a field

The Tea Ceremony as we know it today was created in 16th century Japan by the Tea master Rikyu. The flowers in the tea room are placed according to his insight

An ocean of hydrangea

Annabelle Hydrangea in June seem like waves of surf. The tea house can be seen in the far back, cool in the green shade of the afternoon.