The Family has left the house from having a breakfast brunch and a fury of opening presents by James. We are taking a break before heading out to our non-traditional Christmas meal at a favorite Chinese restaurant. I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas holiday. I will be off line this week, but will be back in the new year. In the mean time here are some containers at a client’s home this Christmas. It is really nice to just use the cut greens to fill those empty containers to provide festive color.
Tonight we had a few friends over to the house for some drinks and hor d’ourves. To get the house more festive for the night we hung some glass ball terrariums filled with tea lights in our maple tree near the front door. Unfortunately it started raining soon after our guest arrived so the lights did not last very long.
We have kept the lights up and will try again tomorrow night to light them again.
I think this will be the last post until Christmas. James is 2.5 this year so we are excited to share Christmas this year with him. I hope everyone has a safe holiday this year!
It has been unseasonably warm this December and still no snow in Columbus. This has made it more difficult to get fully in the Christmas spirit, but last night we went to see the lights in downtown Columbus to help boost the holiday mood. There are two new parks in down town that we visited along with the State House. The parks featured LED lights, while the State House trees were covered (you will see what i mean) in incandescent strands. It was a great way to spend the night, even if it was 50 degrees.
The up lighting on the trees changes colors at the new SciotoMile Park, so after staying a few minutes you could see all the hues. Also Christmas music was playing on the loud speakers which was very nice.
Next we drove over to see the Commons and State House. I am typically not a fan of colored lights, but this was actually really nice.
Here is one of two trees dripping in lights. Each tree alone had eight extension cords leading to light the tree. Being the dork that I am I took a photo inside the tree to show how detailed each branch was wrapped. To see the difference just compare with the trees above.
It is hard to see, but this is the trunk of the tree and look at all the lights on the inside. I know how much work it is to wrap a tree, so this is crazy.
Today we are sending out the last of the holiday cards to our clients and vendors. I cannot believe that Christmas is almost here and Hanukkah starts tomorrow. I still have a few more things to share before the holidays this week. In the mean time, here is our holiday card for this year.
|Excuse the camera phone photo, let the good one at home.
I thought I would pull together some gift recommendations for the landscaper in your life. These are items that are valuable tools, but are special items they will use everyday.
1. Exceptional Gardens by Wim Pauwels (see here). This is my all time favorite book. The gardens are beautiful and inspiring to anyone interested in landscapes. I think the book is out of print, or only offered as select retailers. I purchased my copy a few years ago at Williams Sonoma Home and look at it almost weekly. This is totally worth tracking down, (as is any book by Wim Pauwels if interested in design).
2. C.O. Bigelow Chapped Hands Remedy No.1012. (buy here). This is great for hands after working outside in the cold weather all day. I have a few tubes I keep around because it really helps on cracked hands.
3. Hunters Bornio Boots, (buy here). All gardeners wear boots. I flip between a few different pairs, but these are nice for guys and you don’t have to worry about how dirty they get.
4. Tree Trimmings Doormat, (buy here). My home is not covered in houseplants, but this doormat gives a nice nod to the natural and is still functional.
5. Patagonia Down Sweater, (buy here). I love this coat. It is light weight, yet keeps me warm when working outside in the colder months. I wear it both on and off the clock during the winter.
6. Felco Pruners (buy here). This is an essential tool for every gardener, both novice and pro. May look like a utilitarian gift, once they start using will totally thank you later.
7. Linnea’s Light Fir Candle (buy here). For someone you don’t know too well and likes to garden, an outdoor scented candle is perfect. And a Fir fragrance is just manly enough.
So I was slow to join Pinterest despite everyone telling me how much I would enjoy it. Well, last month I finally joined and have not gone a day with out spending time pinning. There is such variety of photos and categories people share and have created. I am also very excited to see how many folks have garden boards and when I stumble across one of my own photos on someone’s board. If you would like to follow my boards, click here.
Right now my boards and pins are not as neat as I would like them to be. I plan to go back and organize by category (style, plant types, material, etc) and adding more details to the pins, but that will be an undertaking for a snow day. In the mean time here are some of my favorite photos.
This weekend we put up our Christmas Tree and did some decorating outside. I say we, mainly my wife did the decorating outside while I worked on waterproofing our basement (don’t ask).
I think she did a great job. Glitter snowflakes and glass icicles. The moss “M” was created for the cover of our Holiday idea book.
I need to go back and add some greens, stems, and accents to our container. At our house it is more of a gradual process, when we have time and don’t need product for client’s homes. I will share more photos once the container is complete. The dog is wire a Basset hound we had at the nursery for awhile that we are fostering until he finds a forever home. Let me know if you are interested.
One of the projects we worked on last week was decorating the interior of the client’s home. We had free reign on the design, so we used the client’s artwork and decor to pull the color and design. We focused on the stairs and fireplace in the great room.
The great room is smokey black, lots of white trim and 10 windows, filling the room with natural light. We choose to use red as a dramatic accent to the black and white room.
The mixed green garland is accented with magnolia leaves and juniper branches. Red glitter ribbon draws the eyes across the mantle.
We also created this arrangement that will last the whole season. Pussy willows, variegated oregano and magnolia leaves. This could be created at home with clipping similar plants from your landscape. Swap the Pussy willow for Red Twig Dogwood and the oregano for boxwood.
Next we worked on the stairs in the entry hall. Here we wrapped mixed green garland with LED lights, accented with juniper berries and eucalyptus. To give a bit of a more modern feel, we added Yellow Dogwood stems. The stems add a smooth swoop to the textural garland and a bright pop of color.
We had a wonderful time decorating the house as a team, and hope the homeowner was surprised (and happy) with the transformation. Oh and here is a look at the lights outside the house we also did.
I am glad I warned it was going to be a busy week, because this is the first time I have been able to get on the computer all week and still don’t have much to share. We have been busy decorating client’s homes, gutting our design office for a redesign and sourcing special items for clients. Which means next week I will have a lot to share, but today I am a bit behind.
In the mean time has anyone else seen the tree on the cover of the December Martha Stewart? Amazing! See below for how to get the look:
Tricks to get the same look:
- Use different sized bulbs – C9, C6, and minis. This gives the different clusters of light.
- Wrap the major branches- go out then back down. This will help give the tree structure. After the major branches, do the smaller ones.
- Use lots of lights - think like 5,000 lights (yes that many). However covering one tree will make a great impact compared to a few strains across multiple trees. Those trees you admire in public spaces can have up to 10,000 lights on them.
- Use LEDs – they are more expensive up front, however cost lots less to run and will not pop the breaker each time you turn the lights on.
A qualifier on the LED lights. They now make LED lights that have the same warm glow as the traditional white twinkle lights, not the strange blue light. I don’t know if these are available yet on the market to the public, but we have a commercial supplier we have been using on all our clients this year. Next week I will share photos so you can see the difference and judge for yourself. If you are interested in changing to LED lights, call your local landscape company and ask. Odd’s are they will be able to supply you the commercial grade lights.
I hope everyone has a great weekend. We are planning on decorating at home this weekend. Also I will have a few client projects to share too!