January 31, 2015

Nandina Berry Wreath for Valentine's Day: 2015 Version

Chances are, if you are an Oklahoman and have a yard, you have nandina growing in it. I have shouted their praises many a time as they are so easy care and lend such brightness and utility to the landscape and the vase. In fact, they are so common it is easy to overlook just HOW useful and festive they can be.

Last year at about this same time,  LC and I did a nandina berry wreath segment on FOUR YOUR GARDEN.  To watch that specific segment go here.  In fact, I wrote an article about a heart shaped version for the February issue of SOUTHERN LIVING.

(To make an X's and O's version of this Valentine wreath go to SL's FB page here).

As I get older, I find I give more time and attention to the smaller holidays of the year (i.e. Valentine's Day) and less attention to the grander ones (like Christmas). And Valentine's Day is, I think, the last reason for wintery  garden prunings and pluckings from the landscape before the desire for the freshness of spring's givings take over.

As spring arrives, I no longer care about the unseasonally-hued red berries as color jolts for the garden....so I often cut baskets and baskets of them off the shrubs and fill my urns, bowls, buckets and vases with masses of them.  Quite an easy and cardinal red statement for the month of love and romance.

Not everyone of course has these garnet jewels in such profusion...perhaps just one or two bunches of their pendulous beauty.  In that case, put even those few berries to use

adorning your love's gift, or sprinkle them about in pots and indoor plants.

Don't hesitate to snip branches of evergreens, ivy and vines to tuck into a store bought grapevine wreath...

or make a minimalist, more delicate wreath form of your own with vining canes of wisteria, trumpet vine, or ivy.

Just wrap the tendrils around a bucket or such, and secure the circular form with thin gauge wire to secure its shape. Then weave in berries and greenery, more or less to taste, and voila!

2015 version of a Nandina Valentine Wreath.

Prop it on a bench, lean it on your mantle, hang it on a door or window, or just...

be creative.


  1. Oh, such a small world it is! I started following your blog when looking for ideas for French portagers. I didn't realize until now that this all takes place in Oklahoma, even when I saw similar images on "Oklahoma Gardening." Any how, it's pleasure to see your photos in lots of different mediums and look forward to seeing what's planned for the Spring.
    Kindest regards,
    Artist and Teacher in Edmond, OK.

  2. I love, love Nandinas! Had never heard of them until we moved here to N.C. and inherited some on our place. They were in very poor condition and it's taken a few years of careful pruning to finally have berries…but now they seem happy. I agree, they are so versatile and give several months color, indoors and out!

  3. Carolina, I am so glad you discovered my little world. Do come by for a visit....would love to have you!

  4. Libby, pruning is everything with nandinas! I frequently chop them all the way to the ground and let them
    start over! Glad you like them as much as I!

  5. Thank you for the generous invitation, Linda. I will definitely get back with you on that this Spring. We've had a bit of a taste of Spring and look forward to some wonderful weather coming up. Happy weekend to you.
    Best wishes,


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