Posted 19th Dec 2016
The rich greenness of moss is a welcome sight during the winter months. With their soft cushion-like texture, these natural decorations add a lovely rustic touch to your home at this time of year
These moss balls are easy to make and look good when combined with early spring flowers. The spherical shape is best achieved by using tightly-packed, short moss , such as comb-moss.
Here's how to make your own:
1 To make the inner structure, crumple up one or two pages of newspaper, shape them into a ball, and wrap it all in thin green twine.
2 Attach the moss bit by bit using the same twine.
3 Close up any gaps, cut off the thread and tie up the ends.
4 To make the snowdrop nest, line a coarse-meshed wire basket with moss. Species with a looser structure are particularly suited for this purpose, for example the common hair-pointed feather-moss. Fill with snowdrops along with their root balls, and top off with a larch twig.
Gather your moss with care
Moss should only be collected from places where it is present in abundance. When doing so, it is best to take small quantities from several different places. Many species which are suitable for decorative purposes grow in the garden or on walls. However, a number of species of moss fall under special protection, and must not be picked. For more information on these particular varieties visit the protected species list at www.naturalengland.org.uk.
Green and white, the perfect winter combination
This door wreath is made from combining moss and lichen-covered twigs.
1 Use a straw or willow wreath as your base. These are available from good florists and garden centres.
2 Cover the wreath with a layer of moss and a selection of twigs, binding them to the wreath with green florist's wire. Using different kinds of moss can really bring the wreath to life.
3 It is fine for the twigs to poke over the edge of the wreath. Use a matching-coloured ribbon to hang the wreath up.
4 Earthy green colours emphasise the vibrancy of winter aconite. To make this combination, wrap bushy moss around terracotta plant pots using wire. The whole piece is framed by knobbly branches and mossy stones
5 This lenten rose is supported by lichen-covered twigs. The pot disappears under a cloak of moss
6 The light of these lanterns shines gently between pieces of bark, twigs, moss and a few hortensia flowers.
7 Fill small clay pots with a little earth or gravel, then cover with clumps of moss (these can sometimes be found on old stone walls), lichen and snail shells. The particularly large clumps of lichen come from a florist, but they can also be found on the forest floor
Tip Moss keeps for longer when kept outside. Decorations indoors stay fresh for longer if they are regularly sprayed with lime-free water.