Country life · Farm life · Gardening

A year in the making…

For the past few years my most favourite festive activity has been to make a Christmas wreath.

I love the beauty of them, their brightness and greenness.

They welcome visitors into our home and give a cheeriness to the farm.

But what I really love is the task of gathering the ingredients.

Traditionally I have made them with a selection of evergreens from the farm, footpaths and nearby hedgerows. I’ve used ivy, holly, eucalyptus and pine as well as pine cones, thistle heads, dried citrus slices, feathers, dried fruit, ribbons and bows.

But, as I took down last year’s wreath I decided that I could forage for all my ingredients throughout the year, drying them as I go. I liked the idea of creating a wreath that was made entirely of natural elements found on the farm.

So throughout 2018 I’ve seen saving and drying seed heads to make a more natural wreath.

I’ve collected thistle heads, poppies, fir cones, oak leaves, rosemary sprigs, bay leaves, leek flowers, onion heads and greenery from the garden.

For me it just makes the whole thing more personal and makes me appreciate what our garden has to offer.

Creating the wreath has really made me reflect on the growing year, with each element reminding me of something that I’ve poured love and water onto in an effort to make it grow. And, at a time when the summer feels a long time ago, it makes me reflect on sunnier days and reminds me that I have yet to plan my veg beds going into the new year!

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