Using Beautyberry in Floral Arrangements

Jul 12, 2018

Credit SC Public Radio

Hello Gardeners, I'm Amanda McNulty with Clemson Extension and Making It Grow. For many years Ruthie Lacey and I decorated for parties. I was charged with bringing stuff you couldn't order, things gathered from the wild that added more variety and interest to arrangements that also contained typical florist flowers. So sticks, grass seed heads, wooly mullein stalks and such were my contributions. In the fall, our "most favorite" a category that changed with the seasons, plant material was stems of beautyberry, Callicarpa americana. Under the overpass near the Jackson Boulevard entrance to Fort Jackson was a grove of these native plants. I could just pull off on the paved shoulder, hop out with my clippers, and retrieve long branches covered with clusters of shiny, purple pink berries. One more reason to love Beautyberry. Usually to get great plant material, I have to navigate over ditches and end up with mud on my shoes.