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Now that we are in December many people have decorating their living spaces on their agenda for the upcoming holiday season. Finding the right materials to decorate for the holidays can be as easy as taking a stroll through your gardens. Personally, I find it so rewarding to use some of my own landscape plants as a source of greenery. Cutting your own greenery as needed is about as fresh as it gets. Boxwoods, hollies, nandinas, pines, yews, and ivy all make great cuttings to use in arrangements.
A word of caution needs to be said about pruning — remember that you are in effect pruning the plant. It is important to use proper cutting methods.
Heat, lack of water, and dry air will shorten the life of all cut greens. To ensure that fresh greenery lasts through the holiday season, keep the cuttings cool and moist as long as possible — preferably with the cut ends in a continuous supply of water.
TIP: USE THE PRODUCT PROLONG IN THE WATER FOR ALL YOUR CUTTINGS. PROLONG IS PROMOTED TO USE WITH YOUR CUT TREE. BUT, IT IS GREAT FOR CUT FLOWERS AND CUT GREENS. PROLONG CAUSES CUTTINGS TO ABSORB MORE WATER THAN USUAL, THUS KEEPING THE CUTTINGS FRESHER LONGER. AND, PROLONG IS NOT HARMFUL TO CHILDREN OR PETS.
I use an OASIS as the support for arrangements in containers as it will hold moisture around the cut ends. By the way, this is a great family activity, especially for children. The kids can learn about the plants and at the same time be creative and artistic.
TIP: CONSIDER THE IDEA OF SPRAYING ALL THE FRESH GREENS WITH WILTPROOF. WILTPROOF IS AN ANTI-TRANSPIRANT WAX SPRAY THAT WILL COAT THE GREENS, SEALING IN ALL MOISTURE, AND HELPING TO REAIN MOISTURE LONGER.
Once your arrangement is complete and is now ready to put on display in your house, put a cloth under the arrangement to prevent sap from oozing onto the furniture and taking the finish off of wood surfaces.
Bringing evergreen cuttings inside for the holidays is an ancient tradition that will give your home just the right festive touch.
TIP: DON’T THROW AWAY YOUR CHRISTMAS GREENS OR CUT TREE AFTER THE HOLIDAYS – REUSE / RECYCLE CUT GREENERY AND BRANCHES FROM THE TREE CAN BE LAYERED ON YOUR PERENNIAL BEDS FOR INSTANT, LOOSE MULCH. THESE CUTTINGS ARE EASILY REMOVED IN THE SPRING AND THEN ADDED TO A COMPOST PILE.