Decorating for the holidays

submitted by Kelly Thompson, Certified Master Gardener at Seasons Garden Center

More than ever before, garden centers across America are responding to the demand for plants other than the traditional Poinsettia for the holidays. Plants packed with aromatic leaves and spicy berries are on the minds of people who intend to entertain for winter festivities.

For instance, selections with pleasing scents like the Chartreuse-hued Lemon Cypress and Berry-adorned Wintergreen are trending. Plants such as these are great for both large and small spaces.

They look great standing alone in a festive container as well as an adornment in a great dining room centerpiece. Many of these plants are displayed in standard and topiary forms. In addition, the pungent scent of Rosemary standards are adding spice to windowsills and tabletops alike during the shorter days of winter.

Amaryllis is another great option that offers striking trumpet-shaped blooms with a more delicate fragrance. It is often sold planted up in containers or offered in simple bulbs for the DIY-er.

They are already stored with nutrition within their bulbs, so little care is needed. Amaryllis is a vibrant, easy-care choice that requires medium light and minimal amounts of water. The industry has also geared up with a plethora of plants packed with options of various colors and textures.

Christmas Cacti, Phalaenopsis Orchids and Cyclamen have become quite popular where they offer vibrant blooms to light up a room. Airy fronds of Frosty Fern (Selaginella) and the dark green needle-shaped foliage of the Norfolk Island Pine compliment indoor winter scenes with a calming effect.

Whether one chooses the tradition of the red Poinsettia or a newer-found option like the spice of white Jasmine, decorating with indoor plants during the holidays is a great way to keep your home filled with life and fresh air where friends and family can gather and give.

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