“Focus On Foliage” In Holiday Arrangements

In December, there are varied types of evergreen foliage that can be used to contrast form, color and texture in vases and centerpieces.

spruce needles

Photo: Scott Catron (flickr)

Spruce needles.

Although there are no flowers outdoors at all in our Midwestern gardens in December, there are varied types of evergreen foliage that can be used to contrast form, color and texture.

There are dark green hellebore leaves, for example, and yew, spruce, holly, ivy and so on. The variations in winter may be subtle, but cut branches can look beautiful in winter, indoors in vases as well as outside in urns and pots.

Leaf textures may be matte, glossy, spiky or smooth, and form and shape varies from small needles to the large smooth leaves of rhododendron. Combine light with dark, small with large and glossy with matte specimens from outdoors in your vases and raid your house plants for interesting leaves to showcase with them.

During the holidays add pinecones, berries, shiny balls and small figures around the base of tall vases or inserted into low arrangements. Candles can also be inserted into the center of a low grouping of foliage. Purchase just a few red flowers to insert as the holidays draw near to give the foliage a bit more zip without much expense.

Centerpiece tip

Remember that if you use a silver bowl for your centerpiece to add a glow to the celebrations, line the inside of the bowl with saran wrap before placing the oasis foam in it. Oasis provides a good base for anchoring stems and makes arranging plant materials much easier. Buy it at any hobby store.

Moya Andrews

, originally from Queensland, Australia, served as Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Faculties at Indiana University until 2004. In the same year, Moya began hosting Focus on Flowers for WFIU. In addition, Moya does interviews for Profiles, is a member of the Bloomington Hospital Board, and authored Perennials Short and Tall from Indiana University Press.

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