The Mains of Drum

Tree-mendous Trees!

Published 29/04/2023

Trees are more than just beautiful to look at. They provide important benefits for our environment and health.
Trees can capture and absorb rainfall in areas that are affected by excessive water. The roots soak up the moisture which in turn reduces run off. This can help to prevent flooding and erosion.
Trees for wet soils:
• Alnus glutinosa (Alder)
• Betula nigra (River Birch)
• Populus tremula (Poplar)
• Salix alba (White Willow)
• Taxodium distichum (Swamp Cypress)

Trees absorb water-borne pollutants, preventing them from entering our water ways and therefore protecting wildlife. Air pollutants can also be taken in by our trees, including carbon, which is especially beneficial in high trafficked areas.
Trees provide habitats for many wildlife species, everything from birds and squirrels to insects and bats. Shelter is provided, protecting wildlife from the elements, whether it be sun, rain, or harsh winter winds. Many trees produce berries which the birds and animals will enjoy.
Trees for berries:
• Malus varieties (Crab apple)
• Sorbus varieties (Rowan)
There are many woodlands, which provide us with a lovely environment for walking and exercising, improving our physical and mental health.
Forest bathing is the practice of walking or sitting in the surroundings of a woodland, being calm and quiet. Soaking up the atmosphere and observing nature is beneficial to our mental health and wellbeing. If you’re feeling a bit down or stressed and things are getting on top of you then take yourself to the outdoors. Appreciate the stillness of the calming greenery and the beautiful wildlife around you. Better still if you go with a friend……take a flask 😊

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Winter is a wonderful time to get creative. As the days are short and cold we tend to spend more time inside and less in our gardens. For this project you can bring a little bit of nature inside, or hang it on your front door. You can take cuttings from the garden, forage for foliage, berries, and cones (if the weather permits!), or buy real or artificial foliage and flowers instead. It's up to you what you want to include on your wreath!

First off it's best to go with a theme. Are you wanting a traditional wreath, with red, gold and green? Or maybe something more modern like silver, blue and green? Or you could even go rustic with a simple green and brown colour palette. There's so many different options to suit every taste.

Next decide what kind of wreath base you want to use. You can use rattan (like I have here), or a base with wire and moss. Moss is a good option as it holds moisture, keeping your wreath fresher for longer.

Once you've decided on a theme and you have your base, it's time to choose what foliage, flowers or fruits and decorations you want to include. Make sure to have plenty of foliage, as this is the back bone of your wreath and what makes it look full. There's no right or wrong combination, so just experiment with what you think works well together, and have fun!

Stick the stems into the base until they are secure, or for extra hold you can use a little florists wire to keep the stem in place. Work your way around the wreath ensuring there is a balanced amount of foliage. I tend to add odd numbers of things as this works best.

Once you're happy with the foliage you can start to add in any cones, berries, dried flowers and fruit. You could even wrap around a small set off lights, which will illuminate your wreath and add a bit of festive sparkle. Finish off by adding any bows (you'll need something at the top to hang the wreath from, but you can also add for decoration).

And voila, a festive wreath! Mist the foliage each day to keep your wreath fresher for longer, avoiding the berries, dried flowers or fruit. And for those of you who don't feel so confident making your own or simply don't have the time, we have a lovely selection of pre-made wreaths in store now in a range of styles and sizes.

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