When we lived in Oxnard, there was a lady at our local's farmer's market that was always selling succulent wreaths. I was obsessed. They were gorgeous and seemed so complex. How'd she put them together? Did they actually last longer than a month? Where did she get all the succulents?
Then when we moved to our house I was thrilled to discover my own backyard was full of succulents. The biggest plants by far are jade plants. There are two main trees and then a few little bushes that had propagated themselves from the big plants. (Our backyard is a total jungle - there has been little to no maintenance since the house was built in the sixties.)
Last March, as I was clearing out huge sections of dead plants, I played around with my own propagating experiments (here's a brief tutorial of what to do). I took clippings and planted them in new pots to see what would survive. Many of my re-plantings failed. But two of them are still thriving (I have no idea why some worked and others didn't... I literally took cuttings, stuck them in dirt and left them alone for nine months) and have rooted. Hooray - free plants! (And by free I mean we make monthly mortgage payments for them.)
I more or less forgot about the succulent wreaths until this DIY from DesignHunterLA popped up on Pinterest. I clicked through to learn that that base of these wreaths is a sphagnum moss wreath. A quick search on my BFF, amazon, revealed they can be bought online (for a good price but a hefty shipping rate). I purchased this one and crossed my fingers that I'd figure out how to make this work once it arrived.
The instructions that came with the wreath encouraged me to soak the wreath and then use a sharp tool (it looked like a knitting needle so that's what I used) to poke holes in the wreath and "plant" the clippings. That seemed easier than using floral pins (which I didn't have anyway) so I decided to go with that method.
I went out in the backyard and harvested my jade. I clipped off bits that were being strangled by other plants and from branches that had a lot going on already. I'll be interested to go back out in a month and see what's happening in the portions that I trimmed from. The jade is super hearty, so I am hopeful that it will re-grow whatever was trimmed.
Then I just stabbed my wreath with the knitting needle and stuck in my jade pieces until the wreath was full. It was more work than expected but the result was so worth it. Sometimes when I do DIY projects I think to myself, "No big deal." Other times I think to myself, "I totally understand why these are so expensive to buy." This project was the latter for sure.
I hung it on our front door with fishing line. Wreath hanging tip : run the ribbon, twine, fishing line, etc up to the top side of your door and use a staple gun to staple it into place. It's secure without putting a nail hole into the front of the door.
I am so pleased with how this turned out and actually love the look of just jade (and obviously love that it was "free.") We'll leave it up for Christmas and then hopefully forever. I am so interested to see what happens. The instructions say to "mist it" on occasion and soak it when it becomes really dry. I hope to check in on it monthly and I'll let you know how it does. Hopefully it survives!