Category Archives: Crafts

Composting Branches for Fence Material

OK, so we are not talking a permanent fence, but one that is original with tons of personality. Have the neighborhood kids collect branches and twigs that have fallen from high winds or ice storms. When pruning trees and shrubs, save them for your new compost fence.

First, select a location where this type of fencing will not look out-of-place. We have chosen a spot by the water outlet, where the landscaping is more informal.

Decide how long and tall you would like the fence to be. You could work in reverse by accessing the sizes of existing branches and limbs on your property. Tamp in metal or wooden stakes to hold your material in place.

Have the kids start gathering all the branches and limbs from your landscape.

Start laying the material.

This is also an affordable idea for those who have a small rodent problem, perfect for a garden area.

Don’t waste time bundling up for curbside pick up when you can easily create a functional compost fence.

I know the green metal stakes stand out a bit. I will eventually cover them with bark from a tree. You can also use rusty re-bar or actual branches.

This type of fence is nice to hide garbage cans too.

Children can erect their own forts in no time by creating 3 sides and draping a tarp on top.

To dress the fence up……

install small plants at the bottom and

potted plants

This project really excites the children

The compost fence above has been planted with morning glory vine and black eyed susan vine. These vines completely hide the fence during the growing season.

Over time your fence will decompose and add wonderful black soil beneath. Just add more branches on top of the pile as this occurs.

Send me pictures of your fences……


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Green Weddings are Gorgeous & Reusable

“Green Weddings” are much more than Bohemian, budget friendly, or tree hugging styles, which may be associated with the term. Green Weddings can easily add elements to a wedding where meaning, style, color, ethnicity can be incorporated into the event and be reused or have been recycled from somewhere else.

The existing Magnolia Tree growing at the bride’s parents home can provide much of the greenery needed for the ceremony.

I had the pleasure of speaking at The Perfect Wedding Guide Luncheon November 3rd in Winston-Salem, NC-Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts and also created “Green Centerpieces” with colors of red, white, black and green.

Perfect Wedding Guide is the resource forthe  newly engaged, those renewing vows or second marriages.

Other wedding vendors were also represented at the luncheon.

One easy and quick centerpiece starts with a large white pillar candle. Take a strand of your English Ivy and use hot glue to adhere. This will keep for several days without wilting.

If kept outside, it will last for 2 weeks

The candle was placed in a white bowl with sea shells (the couple may have met at the beach) and red foliage from Nandina shrubs placed around shells. Magnolia greenery was placed around bowl to soften the edges and more shells were scattered on the table. Click here to make Chocolate Treats using Magnolia Leaves.

Red begonia plants were placed in black bags and more Nandina foliage was inserted. The coarse texture of the begonia combined with the finer texture of the Nandina is a great contrast. English Ivy was wrapped around the bag.

A chili pepper plant serves as the centerpiece here. White mums growing in the landscape were cut and placed into the soil within the pot.

The pot was placed in a black bag and wrapped with English Ivy.

Elizabeth Larson loved the centerpieces and could not go home without photographing them for her clients:)


Here is a hanging basket created in the spring and used for a November wedding. Yes, that is real moss.

The chain was detached and the pot was placed in a pretty glass bowl. We used dogwood berries attached to floral wire,  adding  red accents

The hanging basket was brought indoors after the wedding and placed in a warm bathroom

Artist’s Way Creation’s Catering and Bakery provided a delicious meal and several desserts


Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts is a modern and cutting edge venue for that metropolitan woman and bridal party


Recently engaged gals, contact me regarding your centerpieces at Let’s see what plant resources you have to create your one of a kind tabletops!

Reserve a spot at our wedding workshop today and hear more about Green Weddings.

Happy Planting! DianaDigsDirt


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Decorating Pumpkins with Plants

Think “Green” and outside the box when decorating your holiday pumpkins this year.

Select a pumpkin of your liking and a few 1 gallon plants you feel would make a great hairpiece. I chose Selginella , which is also called Spike Moss. This is nice and dense.

Send the kids outside to gather nuts of various sizes and colors. Grab some pine needles too.

Carve out a nice round section on the top for your 1 gallon plant. Don’t forget to water, because you will be able to plant within your garden when the pumpkin shrivels up.

I chose black walnuts for the eyes and a pecan for the nose. The lashes are obviously pine needles.

Place her into your landscape where all can enjoy. If you have grown chili peppers, they are still producing, so one was placed at her mouth.

If you have grown chili peppers this season, they are still producing, so one was placed at her mouth. To dress her up a bit, daisy’s were added to her hair. These are not Shasta Daisy’s, they are already finished blooming. Nipponanthemum nipponicum is a fall blooming flower, the common name being Montauk daisy.

Many plants are suitable for this easy craft  project. If you know of a budget bride or DIYer kind of gal, planted pumpkins would make a beautiful centerpiece too.

Happy Planting!


Posted by on September 27, 2010 in Crafts, Wedding Ideas, Weddings


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Shade Moss Hanging Basket Craft

If you have a shady and wooded area, most likely you have moss, especially in the moist areas. Take your shovel and skim off a thin layer.

Be sure to collect different types of moss for added interest.

A hanging basket with coconut liner was purchased and the moss layer was placed into the basket. The liner was then placed on top of the moss. I also found  old rusty mesh wire and placed around the top of the basket (tell you why in a minute).

We have an abundance of horse rope (a weed) which has incredibly strong vines. A few vines were cut and stripped of leaves. They were then intertwined throughout the planter and rusty mesh wire. The mesh not only helps secure the horse rope, it increases the soil acidity (great for moss).

The horse rope will provide areas to intertwine cascading plants (later on, rooting over much of the basket).

Some plants used were divided from my existing plants, our woods and purchased a few annuals for color.

Creeping jenny, ferns, pachysandra, green and white sedum, begonia, and impatiens.

These types of hanging baskets need water, EVERY DAY. They also need to be displayed in the shade.

The moss hanging baskets would make an excellent addition to an outdoor wedding ceremony, especially at winery’s! Even used as affordable centerpieces when chain is removed.

Happy Planting!


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Chocolate Foliage Yummy Edible Craft

This tasty craft is edible and fun to make without a store bought mold. I found this wonderful idea on Liz Seymours blog.

Evergreen foliage was selected because, well, it’s winter:) For my chocolate leaves, I choose “Little Gem” Magnolia. These large leaves are unjulating, adding more interest and detail to the chocolate leaves.

I melted chocolate in a microwavable dish along with a small amount of shortening.

I let it cool just a bit so it would thicken (easier to apply onto the leaves). Placing the leaves onto wax paper, I then popped them into the fridge to harden. Pull them out in 1/2 hour, gentley remove the leaf and trim any chocolate that ran over.

I wanted a little more detail so I drew on foliage veins with a toothpick.

This easy food craft adds something unique to your festive holiday trays.

This is a craft the kids can help with too.

Please do not use poisonous foliage like Poinsettias, Hydrangeas or Helleborus (Lenten Rose). A few to try would be Osmanthus, Chindo Viburnum or Mahonia.

Enjoy and have a grand 2010!

Happy Planting!

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation


Posted by on January 3, 2010 in Crafts, Greensboro Gardens


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Natural Evergreen Holiday Centerpiece

Cut your own holiday centerpieces  for your dining room tables. They are free and unique adding colorful warmth to the festivities. Select a container and insert floral foam. You will want some foam exposed for a more grandiose flower display.

Once you have cut the foam to the desired size, gather evergreen foliage, twigs, berries, and other natural elements you may want to incorporate.

I choose Japanese Snowbell Tree twigs because of their fine texture. Consider the size of your container when selecting items. For example, magnolia foliage would overwhelm this small container.

Coarse textured evergreens I selected were Indian Hawthorn and Osmanthus.

Use what you have in your own garden and make sure you select fine, medium and coarse textures.

Cedar was inserted around the rim of the container to soften the edges. I snipped a few rose buds for the center.

Cranberries were inserted into toothpicks and placed throughout for color. You could use nandina, pyracantha or holly berries.

Make sure you water your centerpiece.

Yuletide Camellia is blooming in my garden and is perfect for this holiday centerpiece. If nothing is blooming in your garden, purchase a few flowers from your local florist and insert into the floral foam. They will last 1-2 weeks depending on the flower selection.

Yuletide Camellia is available for purchase, please contact This plant is perfect for December weddings.

When the flowers have faded, just replace with a fresh bouquet and your centerpiece will last till Valentine’s Day, if watered.

Happy Planting and Happy Holidays

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation

Divine Weddings and Beyond™


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Tomato Cage Holiday Tree

Tomato cages can be reused/recycled into beautiful and affordable holiday decorations. The form is a perfect pyramid turned upside down and bound at the top with floral tape.

Clean off the old tomato remnants and dirt and bring indoors to decorate.

Colorful holiday ribbon can be wrapped around tomato cage and adhered at the top or bottom. This particular tomato cage stands 4 feet tall, perfect for a corner needing vertical interest.

Place garland or colorful fabric around the bottom.

Holiday ornaments can be hung from the circular portions of the tomato cage.

A small up light was placed in the middle and hidden by the garland. This soft light is perfect to illuminate a dark corner.

Other ornaments were placed around the bottom; pine cones, stars and gold fruit were used.

A large bow with cascading ribbon was utilized to finish this unique modern style tree.

If you have several tomato cages, line them along a walkway and anchor into the ground for a spectacular and affordable holiday pathway. The cages can be adorned with garland, strings of beads or even popcorn for the birds to nibble on.

If you are having your wedding  during the winter season, think about incorporating tomato cages within your landscape, adding drama to your special day. This is an affordable idea for those thrifty brides.

Have fun with your holiday decorations and enjoy.

Happy Planting!

Diana Gardner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation


Posted by on December 14, 2009 in Crafts, Wedding Ideas


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