1,2,3: Drab to Fab Orchids

Oncidium, Dendrobium, Epidendrum and Cattleya: gibberish? Nope, these are varieties of orchids! The great news? They are at the best prices over the winter, so visit Home Depot, Trader Joe’s, local grocery stores and other non-gardening places for discounted orchids. Although the presentation of these inexpensive orchids is not high-end when you buy them, they offer great potential for a lot of casual luxury style with only a little creativity. Orchids are my favorite because of the delicate flowers that last for weeks or months at a time. In keeping with my motto of “making casual luxury simple and sMARrt” I’ll show you how to buy your orchid for much less and then you can become the transforming florist.

This week’s sMARt is as simple as 1,2,3. You’ll need a couple of orchids, Spanish moss, either garden twine or raffia, and a container (with a drainage hole) large enough to accommodate both orchids.

1) Take each orchid — keeping them in their existing plastic containers — and place them side by side into the container. It’s okay if the original plastic containers get shoved together and bend.

2) Take some Spanish moss and cover the top of the plants, this gives texture and color. Push extra moss into any gaps.

3) Now, here’s where we get creative: finish the high-end look by upgrading the ties. Remove the plastic clips that were holding the orchids to the stalks. Replace each with a combination of raffia (or garden twine) and some moss. Fold over a piece of moss and place in between the orchid stem and the willow branch; the moss will cushion the stem. Then secure with the raffia (not too tight) and tie in a bow; trim excess. You can repeat multiple times on each stem for a more dramatic effect.

Two drab, inexpensive orchids become one expensive fab-looking arrangement that lasts for weeks.  And costs a lot less than buying cut flowers every week! How sMARt is that?