Wendy Gioiosa sent in these shots of some of her winter planters and decorations in the garden.
This huge planter is filled with cut greenery and berries, and is accented with twigs and branches. Any container you use for annuals in the summer can be transformed into a winter arrangement by sticking branches down into the soil like you would for a flower arrangement. The cool temperatures outdoors will keep the greens looking fresh a lot longer than they would indoors. Wendy used a combination of conifer branches and cuttings from a southern magnolia (Magnolia grandiflora, Zones 7–10).
The same planter is now covered with a fresh dusting of snow. Light snowfall like this won’t damage the arrangement, but heavy snow may crush the branches. If you live somewhere with regular heavy snowfalls, setting the arrangement under a porch roof will keep it looking fresh through the storms.
A lovely holly wreath is gilded with snow. It is surprisingly easy to make your own wreath with clippings from the garden, but be sure to wear sturdy gloves when handling prickly leaves.
Colored spotlights add a seasonal flare to the snowy landscape. And they are a lot easier to put up than stringing lights through all the branches of a tree.
Red lights illuminate the big container arrangement.
Sometimes nature puts on the best holiday decorations, with a perfect dusting of snow outlining each berry-laden branch. Best of all, these beautiful berries will provide much-needed food for the local birds.
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