Deck the Halls
Despite the abundance of artificial holiday trimmings found in stores, nothing captures the spirit of the season better than the decorations from nature.
No matter what region of the country you live in, items from your own backyard – or perhaps your local nursery – can add a festive touch to our holiday décor, for example:
Magnolia leaves can be transformed into unique garlands and sages when attached to green plastic clothesline and draped over doorways, mantels or banisters. For stunning wreaths, mount magnolia leaves on florist-foamed shaped wreaths and decorate with fresh cut flowers such as poinsettias, roses and white Casablanca lilies.
Evergreen branches, including pine, spruce, fir, cedar, cypress and juniper, make lovely arrangements. Cluster candles and ornaments for a traditional look or, for something different, bunch branches together and tie in the center with ribbon to create swags to hang over doorways.
Blooming bulb plants such as paperwhite narcissus or amaryllis create striking arrangements on a side table or as a centerpiece. Orchids decorated with red reindeer moss, along with anthuriums and bromeliads, with their magnificently vibrant flowers, can be placed in festive containers and positioned near the Christmas tree, in room corners and on staircase landings.
Rosemary can be potted with a festive touch of ribbon for a simple yet fragrant container. Rosemary springs can be tucked into arrangements and garlands as well. Rosemary topiaries shaped into trees and Norfolk pines trees make excellent natural alternatives to cut Christmas trees and they can be replanted after the holiday season in or outside the home.
Ivy, a vigorous vine readily available in many yards, makes an excellent green for holiday arrangements. Deck the halls and stair railings with this versatile plant and tie with red or gold ribbons.
Holly, the most traditional holiday green, comes in several forms, both green and variegated. Both its foliage and berries lend themselves to holiday décor.
Nandina berries, boxwood, bittersweet branches, sweet gum balls, pinecones and nuts such as acorns and walnuts also can add an ornamental touch with added into garlands, wreath, or arrangements. And don’t forget the mistletoe!
Jennifer Perez is an expert in interior plant care and design and owns
Growing Roots, 3940 4th Street, Long Beach, CA 90814. 562-773-7027