2 of the most long-lasting greeneries you can purchase are Salal and Italian Ruscus. These greenery bunches can last without being in the water! You have to keep them in a really cool place. What does this mean to you? This means you can pick up these babies 1-2 (even 3!) days before your wedding.
How much to order
Start by purchasing one bunch of each from your local flower market or shop. This way you can see exactly the volume and the effect. You can then play around how heavy or light you would like them to be on your tables.
*** PRO TIP: If you are mixing both Salal and Italian Ruscus, do not overdo the Salal. It will easily overpower the Ruscus. Start with a base of Salal and then layer the Ruscus on top. The pointed tips of the Ruscus are what it’s known for. Make sure you layer and put Ruscus last.
Once you’ve figured out the style and volume that you prefer, count the stems accordingly.
SALAL: Usually around 8-10 stems per bunch.
ITALIAN RUSCUS: Usually 5-8 stems per bunch.
When calculating the number of stems you need, always go on the lower count (Salal: 8 and Italian Ruscus: 5)
*** PRO TIP: To ensure you are happy with the volume of your centerpiece, check the table WIDTH, not just the length but also the width. If your banquet is narrower, you might not need to cover a wider area, and a few stems might be more appropriate. If it is wider, consider wider coverage and add-ons like candles.
Here is a sample of what your breakdown of stems/bunches will be:
PER TABLE BREAK DOWN: 3 stems for base Salal + 5 stems Ruscus
NUMBER OF TABLES: 10 rectangulars
*** PRO TIP: Always add 10-20% padding. When you get the greenery, not all the stems might be 100% useful, and you might need to discard some of them. To have a good amount of extras, 10-20% will save you the stress!In the sample below, we added 20% (multiplied by 1.20).
SALAL TOTAL STEMS: 3 stems x 10 tables = 30 stems x 1.20 = 36 stems
ITALIAN RUSCUS TOTAL STEMS: 5 stems x 10 tables = 50 stems x 1.20 = 60 stems
ITALIAN RUSCUS TOTAL BUNCHES: 60 stems ÷ 5 stems/bunch = 12 bunches
*** PRO TIP:Always round up the stems. For the extras you have, you can put it on your head table or other tables like the cake table, welcome table, etc.
Processing and cleaning
Italian Ruscus usually arrives without much cleaning needed. There might be some leaves that you might want to check on. It also sometimes comes with some small yellow fruit like balls. You can either keep them or just cut them straight off.
Salal sometimes arrives with some sediments. You can wipe it off with water as needed.
The best way to prep is to pre-cut the long stems (see photo below!). These stems are usually a telltale sign that you just literally laid the greenery on the table. You will, but this prep step will help elevate the look and make you look like a PRO DESIGNER!
Without these long stems, it will almost look like they are all connected like a garland; since the long bottom stems will no longer be visible, the “endpoint” will almost “disappear.” Yep. You just elevated a seemingly “ordinary” idea with this DIY design pro tip! We’ve done something similar to this here.
Packaging and storage
This is probably one of the most important steps on How To: Greenery Wedding Centerpiece: (Step by step guide); PACKAGING!
The best way to package is to do it individually per table after you have trimmed the extra stems, group the stems accordingly already (based on your breakdown).
Put the number of stems needed per table in a bag. We would suggest using a clear bag to ensure that it doesn’t “accidentally” get thrown out.
Label each bag with the table number for where it’s supposed to be, especially if you plan to put more stems on the sweetheart table. 1 bag with the exact number of stems per table is the best, easiest, and fastest way to go!
When you have these packaged and labeled accordingly, you and whoever might help you set up at your venue will be able to reference much easier and set-up much faster.
Store in a cool place, away from any draft or heat. Italian Ruscus might need a little more love and care (water!), but the Salal will usually stay in good condition if you keep it in a cool place.
Since you have already amazingly pre-packaged everything per table, it will be literally easy peasy to set-up them and place them on the table accordingly.
If you have some friends or family helping you set-up, you can provide a reference photo of how you would like the set-up and how many stems per table. It can look something like this:
Easy and affordable add-ons
The easiest add-on to elevate the look of this greenery centerpiece is to add votive and floating candles.
Yes, we know, it is tempting to add the sexy tapered candles. You can definitely add them. They do, however, need a stand, and of course, they are open flame. Most venues are ok with an open flame, but some are not.
The easiest of them all to elevate the greenery look and add that romantic touch are votive candles. You literally pull them out of the box, place them on the table, and light them up, or you can have your venue coordinator light it up 30 minutes before the door opens for the guests to walk in.
The floating candle is gorgeous, but let me tell you that there is work needed to fill those vases with water and place the floating candle on top. It might seem like an easy and fast thing to do, but if you are using the kitchen sink or the venue’s bathroom sink, this will take up time.
If you are really keen on adding them, you can add them to specific special tables or if you have that extra set-up time.
There you are! How To: Greenery Wedding Centerpiece: Step by step guide! Please share your thoughts with us in the comments section below! xo
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