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13 November 2014

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Colin Evans

You are in: Berkshire > Local radio > Colin Evans > Rocking around the Christmas Tree

A wreath can lead to romance

A wreath can lead to romance ...

Rocking around the Christmas Tree

Colin thinks up some snazzy Crimbo decorations using twigs and foliage from the garden! Treat yourself to an aromatic shrub such as rosemary, the plant of the week. Also how to get rid of those pesky slugs.

With Christmas just around the corner it's time to think of what to bring into the house from the garden to turn into Christmas decorations in the form of garlands and other living decorations and displays.

The finishing touch for every house..

The finishing touch for every house..

Firstly, cut long sections of woody stems. I especially like hazel as this is quite flexible and will bend as a framework into circles or form swags and garlands.

Using soft wire, gather a good quantity of stems and wire a thick bunch together and this will form the frame for the colourful stems to be pushed into.

As there are just so many plants out in the garden that are suitable we are stuck for choice so just cut the healthiest and best looking pieces of stem.

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

Have yourself a merry little Christmas

My advice is go for all evergreens and any plant material which is covered in berries and you won't do better than good old holly and ivy.

These plants will form the basis for a brilliant swag, wreath or garland and will make an ideal background to weave in conifer and viburnum.

Adding variegated foliage will bring the whole display to life with the use of spotted laurel and any other variegated plants available, just be creative and you won't go wrong.

If spending lots of time on this is not your idea of fun then simply use the same
materials, place great mixed bunches into vases and treat them like cut flowers.

Add plenty of dried conifer cones, colourful baubles and other Christmas decorations and the finished product will look as good as any professionally made. Give each display a good spray over with very cold water.

Colin's plant of the week


Rosemary 'Rosemarinus Officianalis' is a hardy evergreen shrub. It has attractive, aromatic foliage and mauve or blue flowers. Rosemary will grow well when placed in the sunlight and planted in a well drained soil. After flowering the stems should be cut backs. The new shoots can be cut off and stored and dried for use as a herb.

Rosemary

Rosemary

Prune both apple and pear trees during December or through January and February. Most varieties will need some pruning as the trees will get out of shape and too big to maintain as well as diseased and the quality of fruit poor if some wood is not removed. If in doubt, cut it out.

Slugs and snails can still be a problem even at this time of the year especially if you have brassicas growing in the garden. Slugs and snails like to use the large leaves as cover and will feed on the new growth during the warmer days. Either remove these slimy pests manually or use slug pellets to  control them.

Happy Gardening and a very Happy Christmas.

last updated: 22/12/2008 at 15:34
created: 22/12/2008

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