Summer flora always gets the limelight. Sure, there are oodles of lovely foliage and flowers to see at the height of summer, but my favorite time of year for a spectacular floral display is fall. I’m not referring only to the brilliant display of colorful leaves. I love seeing the warm colors of fall blooming flowers, and the dried seed pods left over from spent blooms.
One of my favorite ways to display fall’s beauty it to make a foraged wreath.
• 12 inch straw wreath
• Floral snips/pruners
• Foraged leaves, flowers, and seed heads
For this project, I highly recommend a straw wreath form. They are lightweight, inexpensive, and reusable. U-pins make wreath making a cinch — no wiring required. After you try making a wreath with these two elements, you will be making your own fresh, botanical wreath for every season.
About Foraged Botanicals
Think outside the box when looking for botanicals. In addition to leaves and flowers, take a look at the dried seed pods of flowers or grasses. Look for a variety of textures, too. You will need a combination of full textures as a filler/base and some structural branches or seed pods for interest.
In my wreath, I used the following botanicals foraged from my yard and garden:
Southern Magnolia branch with seed pod
Star magnolia branches
Holly branch with berries
Dried mop head hydrangea flower
Oakleaf hydrangea seed pods on branch
Build a DIY Wreath Base
Separate your botanicals into bundles so you can see them easier. Start by building a base. Use the fuller branches and pin them to the straw wreath forms.
As you lay the second bundle, overlap it about ⅓ of the way down from the first bundle. Also, turn it slightly toward the inside of the wreath then pin.
Repeat with another branch, placing it a ⅓ of the way down from the second branch and angling it toward the outside of the wraath.
Repeat the process all the way around the wreath form until you reach the beginning.
Add Wreath Filler Material
Next, fill in between the base layer with filler/fuller foliage or flowers. In my case I used the goldenrod and oregano. Use as many pins as you need to secure the botanicals.
After this step, you should not be able to see the straw form.
Add the Interest
Tuck in your larger florals or seed pods among the base and filler layer. Try to use odd numbers — this helps balance the piece better. Periodically, step back to look at the wreath to see if you need to hide any open spots and check to the overall balance.
Hang your lovely foraged fall wreath on your front door or in a sheltered area. Your wreath should last a few days and even up to a couple of weeks, if your botanicals were already mostly dry. After the botanicals are spent, remove them from the wreath and toss in your compost pile. The wreath and pins can be reused.
Debbie Wolfe is a wife, work-from-home mom of two rambunctious boys, obsessive crafter, and gardener in Georgia. She is the co-author and photographer behind the garden blog The Prudent Garden. Connect with Debbie on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.