As winter approaches, hanging baskets and planter boxes aren’t necessarily something you need to store away with the lawn furniture.
Spruced up correctly, they can “hang out” and look festive through the winter months without looking like leftover Halloween décor.
The best part is there is none of the pressure of keeping things alive and most items you can scavenge from your yard and holiday decoration boxes.
Start by clearing old plant matter out of your container of choice, but leave the stale dirt in there.
While nothing will be taking root, you’ll still need the weight and a base for holding things in place.
Next, scavenge supplies until you look sort of like the Grinch when he gathered all the goodies from Whoville.
The same principles used for spring and summer planters apply: Incorporate items that spill, thrill, and fill.
For your “fill” and your “spill” needs, look for boxwood or magnolia trees and trim some boughs.
If you have a limited winter wonderland to forage, you may find bundles of cedar, fir, pine from a local Christmas tree farm or garden center.
Stick them in so they both fill the bulk of the container and hang down over the edge of the container.
Smaller birch limbs or beautiful red dogwood twigs are good candidates for the “thrill” to add visibility and height to baskets.
To brighten and add interest to your foliage, experiment with natural and man-made decor.
To keep a natural look, add in some pinecones and a splash of color with winter berries or crabapple.
A natural-looking faux bird could also be tucked in.
If you would like a more whimsical look, raid your tree decorations.
Bright red and golden Christmas balls will certainly stand out or glittery floral picks can contrast against the greens of your foliage.
To get a snowy look for your project, purchase a flocking material such as “SnoFlock.”
It comes in several sizes, so for reference, a full size 7- to 8-foot artificial tree will take around 2 1/2 pounds of flocking material.
To apply, spray water on the surface of your branches/pinecones/etc, and shake flocking over it out of a colander.
The keys are to not get your fresh flocking wet or damp before it makes it to your project and have a drop cloth underneath your project to conain what doesn’t stick.
No matter how excited you are, allow time for it to dry properly.
If you want it to look like the blizzard of 1997, make another pass to really pile up the snow.
Once your arrangement is complete place it in your yard.
If you’d like, you could also dress up the vessel itself with some thick wreath ribbon or ornaments dangling from a hanging box for some pops of colors.
White lights draped in the arrangement are also pretty against a dark winter sky with a battery pack strand or plug-in strand if electric is nearby.
If you love your outdoor holiday masterpieces, you can apply the same unfussy holiday chic technique to your tabletop decor.
Using an antique crate or planter box, fill one with shorter items and slip in a candle.
In your toasty home they won’t last as long as the outdoor arrangements, so try setting them on your porch or cooler area between guests or during the day.