I know I know it’s OCTOBER, how can I be talking about the BIG season so soon? we haven’t even had Halloween yet!
I have a reason and good one too. This year has been a good deal about diversifying, blending all the elements of gardens and plants that I love, adding a boost to income streams and as some of you know I have started selling cut flowers to local businesses with plans to expand that next year too. But this winter festival season I will also be making a whole heap of (at least 20) Wreaths for another fantastic local business. I’ve made lots in the past, mostly for winter but the occasional one in autumn for the joy of the bounty and now I get the chance to practice my creative art 20 times over. FANTASTIC. I find it hard to simplify in my creative life, I want to include it all. Planting design is a test of this all the time and I have learnt to modify and restrain and edit, but with this project I won’t have to!
To make sure I’m doing it like a pro and using ‘best practice’ rather than only ‘tried and tested’ I have watched almost every wreath making video on you tube, there are a few. It’s clear that some folk are much better at these instructional movies than others. I’ve learnt some interesting tricks and definitely some ‘not to do’s’.
I’ve lined up some of the makings from a local wholesaler. Wire rings, moss, reels of thin wire and stub wires for fixings, I was tempted by dried citrus fruits and cinnamon rolls as well as weird looking nuts on stubs (fine wire stakes). The rest, the greenery will come from a variety of sources, just like my Mother used to do, I will be raiding my own gardens and Allotments, those of family and friends, one client has already offered, Ivy clippings from their Ivy hedge and the Holly tucked at the end of the garden, although it’s about 15ft high so perhaps not! The more I tune into the task the more greenery I see. Dog walking and foraging in the local woodlands and forest show an abundance of pickings to be had, fallen pine cones that can go in the oven on low to make them open, spriggs of spruce, to add scent and shape, fallen twigs that can be twisted and shaped under and into the foliage. It’s a good year for berries which will help, though whether there will be any left by the time the serious MAKE comes (late November) I am not sure. I have Pyracantha and Holly for red berries and Lonicera for blue/black. The more I forage the more I see and I am careful not to denude a plant and leave plenty for others and wildlife. The lovely local business is providing most of the spruces and conifer, much of the holly and probably a bit of mistletoe to boot.
And of course I will be looking at the Language of Flowers to make sure all the wreaths are imparting happy holidays and a good seasonal cheer.
Watch this space for updates on the wreaths, I’ll be photographing each one for posterity and may even make my own ‘How to’ video to make you all laugh.