So I went on a mad foraging mission and found all this lovely greenery. I had to make two trips I found so much gorgeous stuff. Very heavy on the green (Laurel, Holly, Yew and assorted other stuff) quite light on the red (could only find one branch of red berries and a bunch of rose hips!).
Holly with berries on it = officially rare as hen’s teeth this year. Don’t get me wrong, we’re not short of Holly, not round these parts, but Holly with berries? well… I did actually spy some in the stable yard down the lane with ooh… at least three berries on it. But you can’t can you – even in the name of Christmas deckies.
So here’s my pile of outdoors, smelling like a gorgeous mountain of gorgeousness. Just waiting to be made into mantle decorations and door welcomers. I’ve got my two little helpers, one’s on Christmas cards, the other’s on erm… ribbon.
We couldn’t get more festive if we tried. Maybe some eggnog?
How’s everyone else making use of the great greenery shop outside their front door? Are you doing it yourself or did you cheat and go to the farmer’s market?
There were loads of holly berries earlier in the autumn – in fact a good year for berries all round. You have to pick berried holly at least three to four weeks before Christmas before the birds strip them ( often in one go ). I have a single precious sprig with berries saved for the pudding from a holly tree in the garden. I picked it in early November. The tree was covered before the blackbirds got the rest. Picked early you can keep branches in a bucket for ages in a shed or garage.
The holly in our garden was laden with berries but the birds are having a feeding frenzy because of the cold weather. We did have a couple of redwings eating the berries the other day. They were beautiful. Mr and Mrs Blackbird are partial to a berry or three as well.
I live in a completely different climate than you, an arid high desert, so no holly here at all. Well, I’m sure in some people’s yards, but not my own. I waited all Fall to trim certain evergreen shrubs though, in order to use the clippings for a wreath. It turned out nicely with a combo of the greener cedar branches, bluer juniper some with lovely blue berries, and for a pop of red a few of the wrinkly apples out of the storage bin.
Awww. This makes me think of Christmas two years ago with you! I had so much fun decorating with you with our fresh supply of foliage from the grounds. I miss you!!
P.S. Living in an apartment in downtown Denver doesn’t afford much free foliage to be found right outside my home. :(
I started collecting some foliage and fir cones but never got round doing anything with it. Pity. I have a holly tree in my garden, but no berries, but I have another tree the birds don’t like with absolutely masses. Don’t think I’ll get round doing a wreath, the family are turning up today!
I love your website. It keeps me going with my new vegetable plot I dug in the autumn 2007. I had lots of veggies but my tomatoes on the plot were a disaster. Got the blight allround. I shall have to try your blight free variety this coming season. In addition I was given a spare greenhouse by my neighbour and now have to grow something in there. I bought a grapevine but my friend tells me I have to plant it outside to train it inside. Any ideas?
I went to the allotment yesterday and came back laden with foliage. We too were lacking on berries so I am going to brighten things up with clementines with cloves stuck in them. Might have to do it a bit nearer to Christmas though so that I don’t have a house stinking of rotting oranges.
That’s wonderful! I don’t celebrate holidays this time of year, but I grabbed lots of leaves from my yard the other day (after advice from other bloggers) and used them as cover from my strawberries instead of using store-bought stuff… as someone pointed out, they are right there.
Thanks for the tips everyone – will look out for those berries next November!
Please tell me some rosy-cheeked carol singers were standing outside too.
I have my beady eyes on some holly and ivy in the churchyard opposite but am worried I may be struck down for snaffling it.