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20 festive plants to forage • Don’t worry if you can’t find the exact plants we’ve used in our creative projects – pick whatever is looking good in the garden instead. If you can’t find anything to suit, ask friends and family if you can plunder their gardens. Here are some ideas for plants with attractive foliage, stems, berries and seedheads that can be transformed into decorations for your home, wreaths and Christmas tree.
Decorating the house • Making your own natural festive decorations is much more satisfying than buying them and it’s fun foraging for seasonal materials. Our gardens can offer up a surprising amount of greenery in winter, and keep your eyes peeled when you’re out for a walk – but don’t gather plants from protected sites. Look for ingredients that hold their shape as they dry out, so your decorations last. You can also buy dried flowers, berries and seedheads from forists. Many of the elements can be reused next year, making it a thrifty celebration, too.
Easy tree decorations • Add a personal touch to Christmas decorations this year, with these easy-to-make projects. From painted acorns to stars made out of colourful twigs, these creative decorations make the most of materials foraged from outdoors. Don’t worry if you don’t have the exact materials to hand – follow our methods as inspiration and raid the garden for whatever is looking good. And why not get the kids involved – they’ll love helping, plus we’ve got a couple of easy projects for younger gardeners to get involved with.
Make your own gifts • Christmas can be expensive but with a little time and thought you can create beautiful, thrifty presents that will share your love of gardening with family and friends. From making your own tealight holders or chutney to creating a terrarium or growing a cactus from offsets, we have plenty of inspiring ideas for you to try. If you have time to start in advance, you could try forcing an amaryllis or making a kokedama. Sharing your love of gardening with family and friends will make the festive shopping season a far more enjoyable experience.
Make your own wreaths • Nothing says, ‘Come in and have a glass of something and a mince pie’, better than a Christmas wreath – a cheery signal of seasonal celebration. Making your own is no more taxing than wrapping the presents and all you need are materials and ingredients that you can find at home in your own garden. There is an abundance of plant material out there at this time of year that’s perfect for the job, from the bright red berries of hawthorn and pyracantha to the tawny hues of last summer’s buddleia and sedum seedheads.
Festive containers • For an easy way to make an impact this Christmas, fill pots and window boxes with festive-inspired planting. These displays will instantly brighten up entrances and also provide colour and interest over the whole season. And festive pots aren’t just for Christmas – these plants will give pleasure for months or even years to come. After Christmas, remove the twinkling bits, then replant the shrubs in your borders. Most of the plants are widely available, but there’s no need to stick to the exact varieties – just choose something that looks similar.
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Festive house plants • Christmas house plants are an easy way to fill your house with colour during the...