Cinderella squash

Jarrahdale squash at Taft FarmsJarrahdale squash is a New Zealand heirloom squash notable for its beautiful slate blue color, deep ribs and striking deep orange flesh. In the US, they are mostly grown for their decorative effect, rather than for consumption.

 cutting the pumpkinsThese squash run 6 to 10 pounds with thick flesh and a small seed cavity which means they are challenging to cut open and clean out. Using an oyster ‘knife’ and a mallet, cut the opening shape wanted. Then it is easier to run a knife around the opening. I wanted an oblong shape.

 How many knives to cut a pumpkinIsn’t the bright color contrast amazing? I once used them on pale celadon linen cloths on circular tables, putting them on copper chargers (Michael’s) surrounded by similar colored green and purple hydrangea. Each squash contained one large (short) candle, which, when lit, made each squash glow brightly. The array of tools shown were used to remove all the seeds and flesh. In the end, the grapefruit knife and metallic spoon worked best.

 Celadon Pumpkin PoppiesStringing the pumpkin poppyThe pumpkin design is one done for a benefit several weeks ago. I paired the design with a bouquet of the leftover flowers. To complement the bouquet, I made some ‘pumpkins’ out of dried poppy seed heads. These are painted with sage green metallic paint from Modern Masters and then wired with fine copper wire. They were woven through the roses in the bouquet – BUT – no photos were taken.  You’ll have to use your imagination.

 Pumpkin flowersThe flowers for the design were very simple, echoing the colors of the squash: Eucalyptus, Leucadendron, pin-cushion Protea, and a magnificent peachy rose.

 painted pumpkin Oasis skewerHydrated Oasis is shaped in a wedge that was also skewered into the sides of the pumpkin. Visible at the bottom of the squash is a glaze of copper spray paint.

Pumpkin, flowers and a standThe final design was presented on a metal stand, giving it height and making it less stolid. You can see how fantastic those roses were!! Thanks KM!


About Susan

Susan Detjens is a former landscape painter, she lectures, demonstrates and runs workshops on floral design for museums, horticultural organizations and garden clubs across the US.
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