The tide was way out on Sunday morning and the periwinkle shells grouped together in a long curving band the length of the beach. I gathered a few in my hand inspecting all the different shapes and colors. I thought, “What could I make with these?” I dropped a few handfuls into my bag and kept walking. I spotted a group of perfectly round dark smooth rocks at the end of beach; dark grays rocks are a particular favorite. I have bowls with different collections scattered around the house.
When I got home I filled a large glass footed urn with gray rocks mixed with broken mussel shells. I nestled five paperwhite bulbs in a circle within the rocks and filled the container with fresh water; making sure I didn’t add too much because my bulbs could rot.
The tiny little periwinkle shells got a cold fresh water bath while I planted individual bulbs in dirt. I picked up the the terra cotta urns from a recent trip to Snug Harbor Farm in Maine. I scattered the periwinkle shells around the bulb just covering the dirt. I liked the contrasts of the rough bulb, tiny twisting shells, and smooth terra cotta. I added a few more and watered the bulbs. Hopefully by Christmas I’ll have paperwhites blooming in my windowsills and on my kitchen table.