How to Use Plants Instead of Flowers for Table Decorations

Updated February 21, 2017

Although you would like to make a naturally gorgeous centrepiece, floral table decorations are common and expected by your guests. Plant centrepieces offer a creative alternative that provide the opportunity for you to show off your gardening experience and some of your beloved creations. Even beginner gardeners can use plant table decorations by creating a simple centrepiece design. Replace the bouquet in a vase with a garden creation to surprise your guests during their next visit.

Center an oversized martini glass on your table. Add moss to the bottom of the glass. Add a small fern. Place several limes on top of the fern.

Place a potted rosemary plant on your table. Trim the plant into a cone shape to look like a Christmas tree. Wrap holiday ribbon or fabric around the pot. Add Christmas lights to the rosemary plant to complete the centrepiece. Rosemary thrives in a cool, indoor location, so it makes an ideal table centrepiece.

Add a little potting soil to a set of matching teacups. Plant a small rosemary plant or miniature pine tree in the teacup. Place saucers underneath each cup, and place the set in the middle of the table or by each guest's seat.

Set an aluminium or white trough in the centre of your table. Add decorative floral rocks to the top of the container. Place five to nine succulents of varying heights on top of the rocks.

Arrange three clear, thin vases in the centre of your table. Add potting soil and decorative rocks to the bottom of the vases. Plant bamboo or large palm leaves in the soil.

Plant annuals in small terra cotta pots. Tie a colour-coordinated ribbon around each pot. Place on a decorative tray in the middle of your table. As an alternative, place the pots on a tiered tray or cupcake holder to add height.

Center a fern in a decorative rectangular container. Soak floral foam in water. Place foam around the fern, then add six green apples to the arrangement. Attach an apple to a floral pick. Insert the pick into the foam. Arrange so the apples lie on top of and around the greenery.

Select a clear glass bowl, such as a fish bowl, and fill with rocks a quarter of the way to the top. Add compost and moss. Plant calathea and maranta to make your own terrarium centrepiece. As an alternative to the terrarium, make a miniature garden. Use an open container, fill with rocks and sand, then plant several different small plant species. Add decorative elements, such as miniature arbors, houses, trees and trails for a centrepiece that inspires conversation.


Rotate plants that you use for table decorations so plants do not go for more than a couple of days without direct sunlight.


Use plants that can grow at their anticipated levels when making a terrarium. If you use plants that will grow large or have large leaves, your plants may smother others and cause them to die.

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About the Author

Samantha Kemp is a lawyer for a general practice firm. She has been writing professionally since 2009. Her articles focus on legal issues, personal finance, business and education. Kemp acquired her JD from the University of Arkansas School of Law. She also has degrees in economics and business and teaching.