Making Your Christmas Wreath From Plants You Have Growing

WreathDetail

Each year, I make my own Christmas wreath, either professionally as I have done through the years, or at home from conifers I have growing in my garden.

OnRack

To see wreaths I have made professionally, see Wreath Making Fun at the Farm.

 

It gives you the step by step way a wreath you might buy is constructed. You can take the ideas and ways to construct your own wreath from the text and photos.

AlmostDone

Handmade wreath being constructed.

A professional wreath layering Grand Fir over Frasier Fir, then adding white pine sprigs for texture is shown above. To see the steps how to do this, see Wreath Making Fun at the Farm.

The artificial wreath I use as a base in today’s wreath is done the exact same way, except the live cuttings are wired in, not clamped. I usually make my wreaths from a variety of greens to add texture and interest. Using a fake wreath as a base, lowers the amount of real greens necessary to make a full and thick wreath. If you don’t have conifers in your garden, places selling Christmas trees also sell loose greens for a few bucks.

DetailWreath

Detail of handmade wreath.

The one I made this year is a time saver, really simple and inexpensive to construct. You start with a simple purchased wreath that most people buy to decorate and hang outside. I kick it up a notch where the artificial wreath is not seen by wiring real greens to the artificial wreath.

I use the wreath itself, each wired, needled branch on the wreath to fasten in each live greens cutting. It is that simple as walking in your backyard. Just lay each live green over the last, tightly twist the fake branch around the real one until the artificial wreath disappears.

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In today’s wreath, I went out into the garden and cut Spartan Juniper and Arborvitae cuttings, just as I would at the farm for a specialty wreath. I also have boxwood that makes a beautiful addition.  When the base wreath was finished, the decoration and bow was added, again by wiring them in.

The decoration was artificial berries and live Bay leaves. If you use fresh berries, some varieties will eventually start to rot and smell.  The Bay dries nicely. You can add dried flowers like Hydrangea or Stock, or add dried fruit for a very fragrant wreath. The possibilities are endless and way more interesting than plain old pine cones on an ordinary spruce or fir wreath.

And don’t miss my gulls in snow…some very technical, yet useful tips to make those snow photos better.

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About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at: http://gardenwalkgardentalk.com
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48 Responses to Making Your Christmas Wreath From Plants You Have Growing

  1. Nick Hunter says:

    Very interesting and informative. The last couple of years that I taught woody plant identification I required the students to build a wreath that incorporated cones from the many species of conifers that they had studied in the field. I also contributed a huge mass of grape vines from my property for the framework. It was a fun learning experience and, with some timely advice from the Horticulture department, some of the wreaths were actually keepers!

    • That is a great idea for students to learn and be creative! It was also nice of you to provide the grapevine. It is an easy material to work and as you say, makes a nice framework. I got the idea of using the purchased wreath because those needled twigs bend and twist so well, and they are handy too – everybody has them. They just are not very “real” looking. So I thought I just don’t have to use them as intended.

  2. acuriousgal says:

    Wonderful, Donna….thanks for these instructions!!!

  3. Carolyn says:

    Love the smell of a fresh wreath. I admire you for making them… I’ve resorted to buying. There is always so much to do this time of year, sometimes its best to pay someone else. I did enjoy the few years I made my own. Do you make your own bows or is that a purchased one. You may want to experiment with smaller bows that let the beautiful wreath be the focal point. There are so many ribbons to choose from and a variety of ways to tie them…making them is really quite fun!

    • I do make bows in many styles, but this was a bow from the ones made last year at the farm. Normally, my wreath is more creative, but this year there is a “kink in the plans” for Christmas, so I am not decorating. I usually go all out, but not this year.

  4. kerlund74 says:

    Thank you for description:) I always makes my one as well. But the ones you show here is outstanding!

  5. I buy a live wreath with no decorations for about $5 and then hot glue on other evergreens, fresh berries (I use winterberry and haven’t had a problem), and cones, etc. It’s a fun project.

  6. Annette says:

    Lovely, inspiring post – I always make wreaths from material I gather in the garden or on my walks. There’s something about wreaths, don’t know, quite magical. Yours are very professional indeed, well done 🙂

  7. Merilee says:

    Thank you for this! Now I want to make a wreath!

  8. bittster says:

    These wreaths look great, and I enjoyed the link to your earlier post! I’m inspired to get moving and will try something similar today (I hope). I always like using bits from my own garden, but it always reminds me of just how lacking in winter interest my garden is. Need more evergreens…. Thanks! Frank

    • Living in a place where winter lasts too long for most people, I must have winter interest around me. Coming from PA, it was an area that does Christmas up big. With all the PA Dutch barns and covered bridges dotting the landscape, it was made for Christmas cheer. The hilly terrain and deep forests is what I miss most. We used to go out in the woods to cut the tree.

      • bittster says:

        That really sounds like a great Christmas memory, I’ll need to remind myself next spring to look past all the spring blooms and add a conifer or two to the cart.

  9. What a beautiful wreath, Donna!!!!! 🙂

  10. Beautiful. You do a wonderful job creating wreaths. I’m sure it smells great.

  11. Kevin says:

    Awesome idea! I’ve never attempted to make my own wreath, but I like the idea of starting with the artificial one and then building on that.

  12. Very pretty now to get our garden club to walk the woods next year and add more than just a few fresh swags here and there 🙂

    • I hope you are successful.

      • Me too 🙂

        We had our first Poinsettia Fundraiser took orders and delivered to local businesses our club sold over $1400 and we pocketed over $400. It was the first year and it was just me going door to do but I had it on TV(town ch) and 2 free papers. The town supported us by placing it on front of the Town Hall for all to see baby steps to be certain but each sale gives us $200 to $500 not bad for 3 working woman and ME lol We even have our own Epping Garden Club Facebook page since I take photos and update often 🙂 We want to add more urns into our plantings and we set up a paypoal acct. and EBAY acct. to sell nice items from our donated gifts that don’t sell little by little we will transform our town.

        • I did see the post on your fundraiser. You did very well, especially getting the promo on TV and the papers. A lot of hard work went into it.

          • Yes but in the end if our town looks gorgeous and we have no more murders our work will be done 🙂 Trying to bring back a sense of community more than anything else prideful places care about each other I remind myself hourly I may not accomplish it all but to keep spreading GOOD WILL 🙂

          • I just added a new post on my latest jewelry attempts 🙂 I love being busy after so many years too sad.

  13. So pretty! I love natural wreaths especially those with berries.

  14. I always enjoy seeing your gorgeous wreaths..so creative in what you use.

  15. That is so pretty, Donna! I love using things from the yard for arrangements and decorations. The touch of berries on your wreath is so graceful!

  16. igardendaily says:

    Wow! This is so cool! I’ve made several wreaths before but have never thought to use an artificial as a base! (Aha moment!) It makes sense that most any gardener would have enough interesting plant material to use in this way. I love your wreath, it looks wonderful. I’m still working on mine…I bought an evergreen wreath and am adding to it. I definitely prefer real plant material wreaths over fake material but I am noticing more and more that many folks have some form of faux wreath. It seems the same for Christmas trees…I prefer farm grown trees. Thanks for the great info.

    • I am glad you liked the post. Not too many mentioned the use of the fake wreath, so I am very happy you did. I have had a real tree for quite a few years, but it is getting to be a lot of work now. Stringing the lights are the problem on a 9 foot tree. I am the only one doing it too.

  17. dianaed2013 says:

    You are always so generous with your help and advice. The end product is superb

  18. janechese says:

    How festive! Much joy to you in the coming season…

  19. You are so.o.o talented, Donna! Your clear instructions are motivating. P. x

  20. Fossillady says:

    Hello Donna, haven’t been here in a while, but glad to see you’re still here. I changed my gravatar so hopefully you still know who I am. Anyway, we used to make grapevine wreathes and other stuff like cornucopias, baskets etc. My husband and I got the grapevine around our property, but I haven’t made anything since he passed away four years ago now. I have a demonstration article on hubpages.com you can find in the links section of my home page in case you’re curious. Anyway, good to see you and love the wreathes!!!!!!! ♥

  21. Fergiemoto says:

    Wow, your wreaths are fabulous! Quite impressive talent indeed!

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