"Invite the pretty dead heads in to spend the night, and they're the kind of houseguest you can hardly get rid of, explained Christine Hoffman, owner and designer of Foxglove Market & Studio in St. Paul, Minn. A dozen baptisia pods-think of an edamame shell scorched black over a bonfire- can last forever in a stoneware crock. That is, until you crack them open and scatter-sow the seeds in April.

Ms. Hoffman admitted that when wedding clients see assorted pods in a display, they don't typically proclaim, "Hey, look, the life cycle of the plant!' Instead, they say, "I've never seen that before." 

Michael Tortorello for WSJ Off Duty

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