Monday, December 14, 2020

Let's make some wreaths, 2020 Style

Here we are again, another year gone by... it's time for holiday decorating. You all surely know by now that I do enjoy making wreaths. This year I made a couple at home, and then joined friends for a wreath making party (COVID-safe style).

This was the first of the season, I cut a few leaves from one of my Mahonia x media 'Marvel'...

...and then used ribbon (rather than wire) to tie them to the frame. So simple, so easy...

I love it! And of course it's a bonus that it looks so good with the fireplace tile.

This tiny little wreath is made of Cryptomeria japonica 'Rasen' branches, or rather tiny bits of them.

They're held in place with the same ribbon I used on the mahonia wreath.

For the next group of wreaths I drove out to Cistus Nursery, and the home of my friends Preston Pew and Sean Hogan at Rancho Cistus. Of course before I could get down to wreath making I had to snap a couple garden photos. Blue sky like this in December is a rare treat indeed... 

If you think this planting looks familiar you're correct. I've featured it before, here and here.

This little trowel seems to say "dig what you want..." (no of course I didn't!)

And this mangave looked so much like an underwater sea creature...

Speaking of creatures, my friend Ann Amato showed up with this little guy in tow, yes her cat Felix has been known to adventure out to nurseries and other spots around town.

He didn't actually make a wreath, but he kept watch on us all. 

Again I must mention the weather! December 4th and we were outside under sunny blue skies, and not freezing! Sure it wasn't exactly warm—I think the high was 50 that day—but my non-gloved hands weren't cold. This was such a welcome treat for our socially distanced times.

Here's Preston hard at work...

And with a couple fabulous wreaths to show for it, I only got a photo of the large one.

Sean didn't join in the fun, but made sure we all had holiday cookies to munch on and beverages to sip. Also is this guy good at masked facial expressions or what?

Ann (and Felix) showing off one of her creations...

Once the sun went down it did get cold pretty quickly, so it was time to head for home.

Here's what I made. I put together the Cryptomeria base here at home, but decided more texture was needed, the eucalyptus came via Cistus cuttings.

This one went on the front door.

A different eucalyptus provided the base for this wreath.

And electric blue viburnum berries took it up a notch.

This one went on the side door.

We primarily come and go via this door so it's a bit of wild holiday cheer for us to enjoy.

The final wreath for 2020 is a grapevine frame I've had forever, which I slightly embellished.

Fatshedera and what I assumed was Ilex—but now realize I have no idea if that's right (maybe a berberis? the small dark prickly leaves)—are joined by chartreuse glitter poinsettias that Preston donated to the cause.

This wreath hangs above the sofa for the holiday season...

I am so thankful for a day of semi-normalcy in these otherwise trying times.

Weather Diary, Dec 13: Hi 42, Low 39/ Precip .23 

All material © 2009-2020 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.


  1. OMG - I have to get one of those strollers for my Ramses!!!

    P.S. Beautiful wreaths...

    1. Isn't that fabulous? I've got a neighbor who uses one for her elderly dog.

  2. Such great fun, making wreaths with like minded garden folks.
    I'm pretty certain I would have spend all my time playing with the cat though...

  3. Your last wreath is my very favorite but all are well done. I feel lazy that I haven't attempted a wreath this year even though I saved a wire frame for that purpose last year. I'm thinking some of my Leucadendrons would make good wreath material...So fun to see the intrepid Felix too.

    1. Oh Kris...what I would give to have leucadendrons at my fingertips. They'd make such a good wreath!

  4. Looks like fun, but I'd be tempted to use those wreath trimmings for propagation. The Fatshedera looks more like Hedera 'Sulphur Heart' to me. Just plop that in some water...

    1. I cut those leaves at the base so I'm not sure they'd root...but as luck would have it another friend send me cuttings of his Hedera 'Sulphur Heart' which I checked on just yesterday and are rooting quite nicely! You would have been in heaven with that propagation mindset though. There were a couple of tables piled high with cuttings from around the nursery garden...

  5. I love the way you see the bits of red in the first wreath. All very "you" and such great wreaths without being anything like what you see to buy. So nice to have a variety of greens to work with and yes, do something normal for a change.

    1. As the leaves on the first wreath are drying they're sort of folding inward and you can see even more of the ribbon. I'm enjoying watching it change.

  6. The perfect get-together in these anything-but-normal times. Your wreaths are beautiful, Loree!

  7. Your creations are lovely. Hard to feel the Christmas spirit this year. Like you got together with a friend and we made a few things out of material from the garden. Creative and just fun. Glad you enjoyed your day out.

    1. It was such a needed treat, lifted my spirits for days!

  8. Excellent, all. Cheered me up. Thanks!


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