Holiday traditions are fun and we look forward to their season. They mark time and renews our beliefs, not only in others, but also in ourselves.
It is greening time in the Shire Garden and for as long as I have lived and my families have been celebrating, greening time is met with great joy. Every third week of December around the 21 st we venture forth to gather fresh evergreens for the house and garden.
Some of us couldn’t possibly conceive of a Christmas without evergreens. They give the deepest pleasure and warmth throughout the holiday season. Not to mention the walks and adventurous stories they bring.
Our adventures begin with the cutting of the firs and spruces. We prune small branches from many different areas around the trees as to keep their shapes and appearance good. These greens will remind us of strength.
The holly is next and with great joy we give thanks to its protection It will reminds us of a safe home and the color it brings to our decoration will heighten our awareness. We will prune many types like green and white variegated with it bright red fruit, the small Japanese holly with its black fruit and the golden berry holly for it colors of green and gold.
Then we cut pine with the softness it will bring and the cones of plenty that we will use thought-out our holiday show. It will remind us of soft moments and to keep them well.
We return to Acorn Cottage and lie the greens about us on the floor to choose of them what will be used for the wreaths and garlands and what will be used in greening window boxes and pots. While this is happening I will go to the garden and prune arms full of winter berries, ( Ilex – verticillata ) which brings the feeling of Christmas home.
Reminder that cut greens if used to far in advance to the holiday will dry out and fade. So replace dried material with fresh and always watch for fire hazards.
The greening day ends with hot egg nog and carols as they are placed about the mantel and shelves and tables. How festive the house and gardens look and how full my heart is with soul.
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