This article by Christine Gelley was originally published by The Noble Journal Leader on December 3, 2018.
For the third year, the Noble County Master Gardener Volunteers hosted a set of Holiday Wreath Making Workshops at the Ball-Caldwell House during the week following Thanksgiving. Over three sessions, thirty-six people from Noble and surrounding counties created their own unique wreaths from freshly cut evergreen material.
Each class started with the same material stock, but no two wreaths were alike. With themes ranging from natural to glitzy, the personality and individuality of the wreath creators were apparent in their designs. Fresh locally cut greenery of pine, fir, cedar, boxwood, juniper, and holly provided varieties of colors, shapes, textures, and scents. The results were stunning.
Along with a beautiful holiday decoration, attendees took home knowledge about how to care for greenery indoors. This includes keeping flammable greenery away from heat sources, both due to the risk for a fire and to prevent premature drying of the material.
Many Americans still enjoy a fresh-cut live tree during Christmas. Live trees are wonderful from a nature enthusiast’s perspective because they bring the peace of the outdoors into your home. Meticulous housekeepers may prefer artificial trees because they are easy to pack, store, and are less messy. However, artificial trees are less environmentally friendly than cut trees.
Artificial trees are not easily recyclable and they do not biodegrade. Live trees on the other hand can be turned into wildlife habitat, kindling for a campfire, or compost after the holidays.
Anytime you bring plants inside there is a risk that insects, birds, or a mammal could be at home in the tree. Check for and remove any insect or bird’s nests, before decorating your tree to help prevent accidental home invaders. Remember that any pests you encounter on an evergreen tree chose the tree as their habitat. Therefore, most hitchhikers in your house would not become a residential pest.
The number one rule of setting up a live Christmas tree is keeping it watered. The tree water pan should be checked each day and adequately refilled. This will help prevent the needles from drying out and lower your risk of a holiday house fire.
For more information about using fresh cut evergreens as décor during the holidays, call the Extension Office at 740-732-5681 and ask for Christine.
The Noble County Master Gardener Volunteers thank everyone who attended the workshops for their creativity and enthusiasm. We also thank the Noble County Historical Society for providing a beautiful setting for the classes. We look forward to offering this event again in 2019.