Have you got lots of barbecues or summer parties on the horizon? Are you struggling to think of something to take for your hostess – apart from the usual bottle of wine? This DIY herb posy is a quick, low-cost but most of all an incredibly thoughtful gift to present when you arrive.
All tied up and with a relaxed feel, hopefully the recipient will not feel the urge to have to run around to find a smart vase. The usual cry of ‘I must put these in water straight away’ is usually heard by over-stressed hosts who would rather be doing anything but.
Luckily your beautiful gift, can just be plopped into a jug, mug or jam jar and set out within seconds. It also has the added benefit of not looking too done or shop bought. It will complement any relaxed summer affair.
Before the days of florists and imported flowers, posies made from garden herbs or hedgerow plants were common for weddings and gifts. This is an easy bouquet to make and perfect for beginners to posy-making because you only need to use the things that you find around you in the garden at home. It definitely doesn’t have to look exact and should have a country feel.
- Check that you have everything that you need before starting: scissors, string or jute twine, a bowl for collecting plants.
- Collect your herbs and plants, such as: mint, thyme, lavender, sages, large ivy leaves, chive flowers, rosemary and a large flower for the centre of the posy like, rose or dahlia. You will probably need to collect more than you think. Even the smallest of posies use quite a lot of flowers and foliage!
- Lie your herbs and flowers out in groups according to type. Strip 2/3rds of the foliage off of each stem and clean/take off any dirty leaves.
- Gather a few stems of one of the herbs and hold them in your hand. Insert the central flower in the middle of this mini-bunch.
- Without holding too tight, place another sort of herb around the edge of your posy, turning the bunch each time that you add something. Your aim is to make concentric circles of each plant around the central flower.
- Keep changing the herbs that you are adding… your circles could go something like this: central flower > circle of sage > circle of thyme > circle of 3 stems of lavender (a circle of single lavender stems doesn’t have much impact) > circle of sage again > circle of mint etc.
- When you have used up your herbs or if you feel your posy is big enough, finish it off with a circle of large ivy leaves, turned outwards so that the colourful part of the leaf shows.
- Tie your posy firmly at the ‘neck’ where the leaves stop and the stems begin. You can cover with thin florist’s tape if you want it to be extra secure.
- Hold the stems together and cut them straight – you will want about a fist’s length of stem so that it will stand nicely in its container.
- As this is going to be a gift, you can cover your twine with some raffia or relaxed ribbon. If your posy will be going on a car-journey before arriving at its destination, it is always a good idea to wet some kitchen towel, wrap around the stems and then cover this with aluminium foil. This will help to keep everything fresh and hydrated.
After presenting your hostess with this bespoke token, you will be remembered as that lovely person who always gives pretty gifts from their garden… ‘I’d love to have the time to do that’, they will think. Little do they know how quick it is!
Do you have any other great go-to hostess gifts? Please let me know!
Have a great day – enjoy the sunshine UK dwellers! x