NEW! Crafters Herb Garden Six Packs for Zones 5-11 and Zones 8-11.

 

While most herb growers head to the recipe file for their inspiration, there is a fascinating world of uses for herbs beyond making hum drum meals fabulous. But, since the plants we put into our wreaths and arrangements are not always the same as our culinary herbs, we must plant and grow those herbs that will give us lots of fresh stems and flowers The wreath on the right is made of some of our favorite crafting herbs.

 

There are basically four types of plants we need to put into the garden for wreath making.
BASE FILLER PLANTS
COLORFUL FLOWERS
LEAF ACCENT PLANTS
SPECIAL ACCENT PLANTS

Base filler plants like Powis Castle Artemisia are important because they allow us to construct a well-formed, solid wreath . We use the stems of these plants to cover the wreath base or add bulk to a dried arrangement. Powis Castle is our favorite plant for this. It is winter hardy to zone 6 which has a minimum winter temperature of minus 10. Wormwood, also an Artemisia, has a similar stem and can be grown in a bit colder climates, to minus 20,  but it needs to be harvested before it elongates too far and creates flower buttons.

Flowering Italian Oregano and Powis Castle

Pictured on the left are Italian Oregano and Powis Castle Artemisia cut and ready for wreath making.

Oreganos are a particularly useful group of crafting herbs. Culinary Oreganos make great base filler plants. Italian and Syrian Oregano have proven to be the most prolific. Since it takes a lot of stems to cover a frame, these are very valuable. These two oreganos are winter hardy above 10 degrees. Greek Oregano can be grown for this purpose in colder climates that don't go below minus 20. It is helpful to support Greek Oregano flowering stems with something to keep the flowers from lying on the ground.

Other good base fillers include but are certainly not limited to Greek Bay and Gray Santolina. Base herbs have to be abundant and not too woody.

Colorful flowering plants, like those in this basket, help to fill out the wreath.

Ornamental Oreganos are extremely useful for adding color to the arrangement. Showy Pink Oregano, Marshall's Memory Oregano and Rosenkuppel Oregano are our favorites because they are beautiful and abundant flowers in varying shades of pink. Be sure to cut your flowers before they start to turn brown.

We also plant Licorice Mint, Russian Sage, Curry Plant, Bee Balm, Vitex, Statice because they produce lots of flowers that dry well and help fill in the wreath.

Basket Full of Accent Pieces

Leaf accent plants include Lamb's Ears, Garden Sage and Mints. Actually any herb that gives you lots of large interesting or fragrant leaves can be used to add dimension and depth to the wreath.

Base filler plants, colorful flowers and leaf accent plants are tied together in small bunches to form hands that are attached to the wreath.

The Placement of the First Bundle

Lamb's Ears
Sierra Sunrise Miniature Rose

Special accent plants are like the ribbons on a box or sprinkles on a cupcake, these are used to draw the eye in and make the wreath stand out. We use them sparingly, adding only a few. Miniature roses are our favorite sprinkles but we also use Sea Lavender, Artichoke flowers and pods, and Yarrow and Tansy flower heads.

For more on how to make an herbal wreath visit Wreath Making: 1-2-3.

We have put together two six packs of plants to help you get started with your Wreath Maker's Garden

Crafter's Herb Garden Zones 5 -11 includes Wormwood, Abrialii Lavender, Bee Balm, Judy Fischer Miniature Rose, Lamb's Ears and Tansy.

Crafter's Herb Garden Zones 8-11 includes Powis Castle Artemisia, Dutch Mill Lavender, Manchurian Baby's Breath, Showy Pink Oregano, Statice, Magic Carrousel Miniature Rose.

Check out all of our plants using these links and remember we grow our plants here and they are always ALL ORGANIC ALL THE TIME.

Vegetable Plants

Herb and Perennial Plants
A-F, G-M, N-R, S-Z

Strawberry, Blackberry and Gooseberry Plants

Mountain Valley Views is the online gardening newsletter for Mountain Valley Growers. All rights are reserved.