Living Wreath Tutorial

Need a little something extra for your front door?  A living wreath is one of our favorite ways to bring some greenery into your home!  Follow this step by step DIY from Jenn of Sugar Magnolias and you’ll be a pro in no time!

Living wreath frame
sphagnum moss
sheet moss
spanish moss
spool wire
wire cutters
greening pins
hot glue
succulent cuttings
potted succulents

Collect all materials and set aside 1-3 hours for this project. It’s a messy task so a tarp comes in handy if you are working inside. Gloves are optional.

Step 1: Prepare your plant materials

Here I’m using a mix of potted plants, rooted/fresh succulent cuttings, and moss. Soak the sphagnum moss in a bucket of water. Pull apart the root systems of the potted plants (3-5 groupings per quart sized pot) and add the soil to the soaking sphagnum. All mosses should be lightly moistened as it makes them more pliable and easier to work with.

Step 2: Prepare the base for the wreath.

Start with the flat side of the wreath frame on the work bench and fill the base with moist sheet moss, green side facing the bench. This creates a base, acts as a growing medium for roots and finishes the back of the wreath.

Step 3: Create the growing medium

Squeeze out excess water of a handful of the wet sphagnum moss/soil mixture, this is your growing medium. Place atop the sheet moss and repeat until your frame is filled to the top with the sphagnum.

Step 4: Plant your succulents then sedum

When planting the wreath I treat the succulent rosettes as “flowers” and consider the sedum as the foliage, using it to highlight the rosettes. First plant the potted plants, then add the rooted succulents, and finish with the fresh cut succulents. As you plant use moss to help push the plants into place and pack the wreath tight. Spanish moss can be twisted into a natural rope
and used to further secure the plants to the base.

Step 5: Finishing your wreath

Once all the plants have been well secured to base it is time to hang the wreath and take a step back. Finish the spaces between plants with fresh moss and use hot glue sparingly if necessary, if any plants need to be further secured I use greening pins and hide the metal under moss. Once completely finished spray it down with a shower of water, trying not to soak. Let it
dry completely before watering again.

Living Wreath Care:
Succulents are plants borne out of an sunny, hot, drought prone environment. They’re similar to cactus in that they store vast reserves of water within their leaves to sustain them between rains. Proper care is to recreate this atmosphere by watering occasionally only if the growing medium is dry being sure to let the plants use some of their reserves between waterings. Never let them sit in water, they are much more likely to rot than die of thirst. Only water when the medium is completely dry and if the succulents start to shrivel.  If you are using succulents that are all hardy in your area the wreath can stay outside in a sunny location. If using non hardy succulents the wreath should be brought inside to a warm sunny location during freezing temperatures. Occasionally the rosettes and sedum will need to be trimmed which creates the perfect excuse to propagate more plants!


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