we like it wild: market mashup

We visited a small farmer’s market earlier this week on the lookout for local flowers, but didn’t come across anything that inspired us. There were, however, lots of lush leafy greens, interesting roots, and vegetables in beautiful bright colors. Sometimes all you need are a few veggies and herbs for decorating; a basket full of radishes with lovely leaves can be just as beautiful as a vase of flowers.

The market mash-up is a fun and easy project for creating eye-fooling displays when a vegetable’s foliage doesn’t match up to the beauty of the vegetable itself (and vice versa). While playing with different ways to display our market finds we started “hybridizing” our veggies by combining carrots with bean “leaves” and onions sprouting watercress tops. A row of these unique combinations down the table or lined up on the sideboard makes a conversation-starting centerpiece. We had these on display in the shop earlier this week and they definitely turned some heads! We kept our mash-ups somewhat realistic looking but this could be a fun project to work on with kids who are sure to come up with some really wacky combos. The food doesn’t go to waste either, just plan to cook your arrangements the next day.

CLICK HERE for the rest of the post and a picture-how-to after the jump!

Get started by choosing a variety of vegetables, herbs, and flowers that you’d like to combine. Try to pick things that are visually interesting but that you’d also like to eat later! We started with a carrot that was calling for some nice green “leaves”. Make a small “leaf” bundle that is a similar size to what the actual foliage would be on the vegetable. Put a rubber band securely around the bottom of the bunch and then cover with decorative twine. Make a straight cut across the bottom of the bunch so it sits flat on top of the veggie.

Put a skewer or stick into the top center of the vegetable; the length of the skewer will depend on how much support the bunch needs to stand up. Then press the bunch down onto the skewer. Place your mash-up inside a clear cylinder and if necessary add water up to the level of the foliage to prevent wilting.

  1. Ari says:


  2. Ladybird says:

    What a great idea and a nice alternative to fresh flowers. It’s almost a shame that you have to turn around and eat these beautiful arrangements so quickly…but talk about sustainable design! I’m so ready for our local farmer’s market to get up and rolling…June 1st is the first market of the season in Evergreen, CO as spring comes a little later here in the Rocky Mountains.

  3. Tori says:

    What a great idea for a garden party, too. Grace– great way to re-think the typical arrangement. Will use this in the future.

  4. Those photos are beautiful! I would have never thought to use colorful fruits and veggies in lieu of flowers in a vase, but I love the idea of taking them out of the fruit basket and doing more with them. (Especially for those of us with teeny, tiny kitchens and little space to spare!)

  5. Christine says:

    These are absolutely amazing. Now I know what to do with all those herbs and some of the extra produce my garden always provides. I imagine these could be lovely with small wildflowers tied to the top, too, like a radish topped with little violas.

  6. caroline says:

    This is such a great idea!!! I love all the photos!! xo

  7. elra says:

    Love love love this idea, thank you very much!!!!

  8. Lizelly says:

    innovative idea when flowers are nowhere to be found…Love It!

  9. This is REALLY nifty!

    What a fun way to create some interest & get a conversation going.

    Thanks for sharing.


  10. gayle australia says:

    fantastic twist …… i just love it … especially the carrot – beans combo – ah perfect match.

  11. Anne says:

    I just love this idea of using root veggies as a center piece, fantastic!

  12. susie says:

    i can’t wait to try this after my sunday morning visit to the farmer’s market!

  13. Nia says:

    This is a great idea for party decorations. Or bridal showers, for that matter.

  14. just loved this … espec for us flower staved girlies in the far flung whoop whoop … great concept :) le

  15. Char says:

    Makes me want to have a party just to decorate the table like this. Too fun.

  16. hena tayeb says:

    that is amazing.. it looks so great.

  17. christina says:

    really nice idea. looks great. is it long-lasting or will it smell after a few days?


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