A Springtime Brunch at Moss Mountain

With an alfresco gathering at his Arkansas farm, landscape and garden designer P. Allen Smith shows off his talent for entertaining
springtime brunch, p allen smith
A springtime brunch under Big Sister Oak awaits friends at P. Allen Smith’s Arkansas farm. Smith’s horse, Trudy, grazes in the background.

A Springtime Brunch

Gathering under the Big Sister Oak, around which the entire property was designed, is popular among guests at Moss Mountain.
“At Moss Mountain Farm, the first thing we do is hand visitors a drink. Without fail, that gesture sets a tour on the right track.”—P. Allen Smith
A bouquet incorporates flowers grown at Moss Mountain Farm, including ‘Pink Impression’ tulips, ‘Coral Sunset’ peonies, ‘Sonnet’ snapdragons, and ‘Orange Wonder’ freesia.
When Smith decorates for an event, he likes to use items from his personal antiques collection, like these bird bud vases, which hold stems of ‘Orange Wonder’ freesia and German chamomile from the garden.
A leaf with gold lettering serves as a seating card, set in one of Smith’s many vintage flower frogs.
A savory pie and fruit salad with fresh berries
A fruit salad incorporates fresh berries and herbs from the farm.
Smith holds one of the ‘Coral Sunset’ peonies added to arrangements along with greenery from around the farm.
See more of P. Allen Smith's Moss Mountain Farm overlooking the Arkansas River.
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P. Allen Smith’s Entertaining Tips

springtime brunch, p. allen smith

A garland made from greenery clipped from around the farm serves as a vessel for fresh ‘Soleil Romantica’ roses, ‘Coral Sunset’ peonies, ‘Sonnet’ snapdragons, and hypericum berries, among other blooms. Carrots, artichokes, and curly kale from the vegetable garden are incorporated as well.

1. Make Guests Feel Welcome “At Moss Mountain Farm, the first thing we do is hand visitors a drink. Without fail, that gesture sets a tour on the right track.”

2. Be Seasonally Conscious “I always create flower and foliage arrangements based on what’s in bloom in the gardens. Such efforts further connect the farm’s events with the beauty of the outdoors—particularly if the occasion is held inside.”

3. Pull from Your Own Sources Objects and mementos from Smith’s home, such as the lovely bird bud vases used for the spring brunch shown here, personalize a gathering and let others know that you spent time planning the details.

4. Prepare a Favorite Recipe or Two “I currently enjoy creating favorite dishes from my cookbook, Seasonal Recipes from the Garden, whenever I entertain.

Written by Robert C. Martin | Photography by Nancy Nolan | Styling by Ellen Scruggs | Produced by Ellen S. Padgett

P. Allen Smith’s Seasonal Recipes from the Garden (Clarkson Potter)

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