To make a 6-inch diameter wheatgrass centerpiece, put 3 rounded tablespoons of hard spring wheat berries (they’re also sold as wheat kernels or hard red wheat; find them at health food stores) in a bowl, and then cover them with water for 8 hours.
Fill a shallow container with 1 1/2 inches of organic potting soil. A seed tray works well for this because it drains, but if you don’t have one, puncture the bottom of a 6-inch aluminum pie tin and use it.
Spread the seeds over the soil so they’re close together but not overlapping. Set the container on a tray and water the seeds lightly. The soil should be moist but not swampy. Cover the seed container with a damp dishtowel and let it stand for two days. By then, young shoots should be sprouting from the soil. If you have a florescent light, put the container under it for another two days—watering the shoots lightly. If you don’t have a florescent light, find a sunny place for the container, but know that the blades will grow slower with natural light.
When the blades are lush and green, place the container in a decorative bowl and add soil to conceal the seed tray. Water lightly when the soil is dry. Your grassy centerpiece will last about two weeks—a bit longer if you give it a haircut.
Elizabeth Edwards is managing editor of Northern Home & Cottage. firstname.lastname@example.org