We love a 60ft inflatable Santa as much as the next garden designer, but it’s rather disruptive isn’t it?
Even in towns and cities, our gardens are home to all kinds of insects and wildlife that are inevitably affected by every change we make to their habitats. That doesn’t mean leaving your gardens to the mercy of nature, but it does mean having an appreciation and empathy for who we share the world with. And when it comes to Christmas this can often be forgotten, as we throw plastic and light into our gardens like there’s no tomorrow. So, with that in mind, here’s how we can be tasteful, festive AND friendly to garden critters…
Yes, we did see those wreathes in Poundland this month and yes, we did think they were great value. But a wreath should look like part of nature, so why not make sure that it is? Wicker and bamboo wreathes offer a gorgeous rustic alternative, as do pinecones, holly leaves and berries and natural ribbons made from plants. Not only do these complement your traditional garden design or offer contrast to your modern approach, but they also biodegrade and offer no toxins to animals.
Baubles If You Must
Obviously you can also get biodegradable baubles, as you can with most festive decorations, but we know that the high gloss red and gold can be hard to resist! So if you do love a good bauble, why not hang it on existing natural elements to incorporate it into your design? Think your pergolas, arbors, structural plants and leafless trees – which can be transformed with a few festive additions. This helps your seasonal cheer spread amongst the garden itself, rather than making additions to a design you’ve so carefully cultivated.
Oh, and replace the plastic wire with some twine so that it doesn’t get eaten by the smaller critters. And keep baubles high too, away from dogs and foxes.
Conifers and Containers
Put that fibre optic light up tree down, we see you eyeing it up! Instead, find an old rusty bucket and grab a conifer or two. And hear us out here, but perhaps you don’t need to decorate it? Your home is already festive, and these very subtle nods to the season can bring an elegance to your outdoor areas. They look stunning as they are, and as they’re going outside you can opt for the unloved wonky ones that nobody is choosing…
Sprucing Up Your Furniture
If you’ve got all-season furniture in your garden which isn’t going to be used during a cold and dark December, that doesn’t mean you can’t make it work for you. This works particularly well in areas that can be seen from indoors.
Gather some pinecones, succulents, stone bowls, wooden blocks, deadfall, twigs and branches. Now just get creative on that tabletop. It’s not hard to create a festive feel with all of these natural ornaments, arranging them into centrepiece style installations with miniature Christmas trees or shapes. Again, this is a subtle approach that will make you feel all warm inside when you see it from the cosy safety of your dining room…
Eden Restored is a team of passionate garden designers working throughout London, Kent and Surrey.
We deliver value-for-money on projects of any size, from inner-city courtyards to countryside cottages.
To discuss your ideas and how we can help throughout the entire process, get in touch.