Indoor Plant Decorations for Coffee and Dining Tables

Enhance a dining table set for a special occasion with the clever use of low- growing plants in addition to flowers and fruit, or mix plants and objects to form an attractive display group on a living-room coffee table.

Dining table centres

Plants can be used very effectively as a decorative table centre, on their own or combined with other items. An arrangement which is removed at meal times does not have the same practical restrictions as one left in position all the time. Low-growing plants will be needed for the latter, to ensure that a diner’s view is not impeded.

The design of the table will also affect the choice of arrangement shape. For instance a long, rectangular table could have a row of small identical Bead Plants in matching pots placed along the centre, whereas a round table would look better displaying a circular bowl of miniature Cyclamen.

Consider providing individual displays beside each place setting, Snowdrops in a collection of pretty cups for instance.

Coffee table groupsIndoor Plant Decorations for Coffee and Dining Tables

Low arrangements are also best for coffee tables, where people will be talking to each other across the table. Again, the table shape will provide ideas for the size and shape of plant arrangement. Plants could be grouped in pots that match in colour, in texture or in shape, or one plant could be arranged with other items that match the container – a collection of glass, for instance.

Echoing the colour scheme

When choosing plants for a room, consider the room’s colour scheme and choose plants to blend with it, drawing out the colours; alternatively, add a strong splash of contrasting colour: use a bright yellow plant to add sunshine to a room decorated in soft shades of blue or choose a red plant to highlight a room decorated in green.

Enhancing the style

Plants can be used to enhance the room’s style too. If the room is decorated with a country flavour— natural wood furniture, stone or quarry-tiled floor and earthy colours — choose ivies, ferns, and herbs with warm-coloured flowering plants.

Country garden style, on the other hand, with flower-strewn fabrics and papers, need lighter, clearer colours. Baskets or flower-patterned china containers would enhance this background. Mix plants with garden flowers, or in winter, with a bowl or jug of dried flowers. Add a small dish of fragrant pot pourri.

High-tech rooms which use industrial products in utilitarian shapes and a strong, primary colour plus black and white, require similarly stark-shaped green plants and plants with strong yet simple-shaped flowers in bright colours.

Unusual arrangements

Combine plants or mix them with other items to form eye-catching displays. Here are some suggestions:

  • Use two or three shells as containers for miniature ferns and succulents and arrange with a collection of other shells.
  • Display a plant on a mirror tile to create double images of leaves and flowers.
  • Up-light a glass table from underneath to create strong shadows of the items on the table.
  • Make a dish garden of cacti or succulents surrounded by sand.
  • Combine flowering spring bulbs (still in their pots) in a lined basket, surround with peat, and cover the compost with moss.
  • Group plants in traditional terracotta pots and use one pot for a low flower display (line with a yoghurt pot).

Plants plus

Many other decorative items can be used very effectively with plants to form unusual and attractive table displays. Consider including the following:

  • Fruit of all types

  • Nuts and cones

  • Fresh garden flowers in summer, dried flowers in winter Dried grasses and seed heads

  • Flower heads displayed in a saucer

  • Blossom, catkins or just green leafy branches at the back of a display in a tall, narrow jar Plants to choose

Green plants

  • Button Fern (Pellaea rotundifika)
  • Sword Fern (Nephrolepis exaltata)
  • Polka-Dot Plants (Hypoestes phyllstachya)
  • Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum roildianum)
  • Asparagus Fern (Asparagus densiflorus)
  • Caladium (Caladium bicolor)
  • Brake Fern (Pteris quadriaurita)
  • Mother of Thousands (Saxifraga stolonifera)
  • Mind-Your-Own-Business (Soleirolia soeirolii)

Flowering plants

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