fbpx

5 Fun Easter Basket Items for Kids by The Green Thumb Gal at Carmen Johnston Gardens

 

1. How adorable is this ‘Seven Smooches’ Bunny Hand Puppet from Barney’s? If I’ve learned anything about kids it’s that they love to put on a show, which makes this hand puppet perfect for your kid’s Easter basket this year.

2. From what I remember, decorating the Easter eggs was just as much fun as hunting them later. This Easter Party Egg Decorating Kit from The Land of Nod will take your kid’s egg decorating to the next level!

3. These books are actually a part of my own collection. I just love the beautiful illustrations and whimsical tales. If you want to share a love of gardening with your kids, these are great gifts to include in their Easter basket.

5 Fun Easter Basket Items for Kids: Gardening Books featured on Carmen Johnston Gardens

4. It is certainly no secret that I am a fan of Hunter Rain Boots. I love that they make them for all ages too. These Kids First Rain Boots are great for any kid who likes to run around outside and play.

5. Don’t forget the candy! No matter what you include in your kid’s Easter basket, the candy is always their favorite part. I just love this little Jelly Bean Weck Jar from Terrain and think your kids will be crazy about it too!

Happy (Almost) Easter! I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating with family and friends.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 8

Need an idea for Easter decor? How about a birdcage?!

Photo: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

Easter is a very special holiday. Unlike other holidays, I love that the focus is not on presents or decor. However, this green thumb gal cannot resist an opportunity to create something special for a holiday so near and dear to her heart. It does not have to take a lot of time or money either. All you need is a few blooms, pots, and chocolate bunnies, of course!

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 8

Materials Needed:
1. Bird cage
2. Cabbage and lettuce plants
3. Miniature pots
4. Daffodils
5. Wooden twine
6. Angelina sedum

Directions:
1. Begin wrapping quince around twine.
2. Place cabbage inside pot and then anchor each end inside the pot.
3. Fill the inside of the bird cage with plants of your choice. I think angelina sedum is perfect for this because it resembles grass.
4. Wrap quince and wooden twine around the edge of the bird cage.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 1

5. Nestle the daffodils and cabbages inside the cage as well.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 2

6. Use floral picks to insert daffodils for longer lasting blooms.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 3

7. Fill the tiny vessels with blooms. I love these little chicken compotes.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 4

8. Flank the outside of the cage with cabbages and blooms.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 5

9. Bunny parade! Line as many chocolate bunnies as you want along the cage.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 6

10. Stuff the miniature pots with alyssum and lettuce.

DIY Easter Decoration with Plants 7

Fun, right? I think this is an Easter decoration that everyone will love. Happy (Almost) Easter, everyone! I hope spring is treating you well!

Easter DIY

Today’s post combines two of my favorite things: innovative Easter baskets and fresh strawberries for spring.

Every time I go to the grocery store right now, those fresh, Florida strawberries are calling my name. Have you heard the call too? If so, this post is definitely for you!

Easter "baskets" filled with the gift that keeps on giving--gorgeous foliage and delicious strawberries by Carmen Johnston Gardens

With Easter right around the corner, I could not resist the opportunity to create a different kind of Easter basket for my guests. Don’t get me wrong, I love pastel Peeps and giant, chocolate bunnies just as much as the next girl, but I wanted to try something new and unique. That is why I have decided to make these awesome Easter “baskets” filled with the gift that keeps on giving–gorgeous foliage and delicious strawberries, of course!

Easter "baskets" filled with the gift that keeps on giving--gorgeous foliage and delicious strawberries by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Materials Needed:
1. Mini colanders
2. Strawberry plants
3. Strawberries
4. Alyssum (Tiny, white blooms)

Easter "baskets" filled with the gift that keeps on giving--gorgeous foliage and delicious strawberries by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Directions:
1. Start by giving your plants plenty to drink.
2. Take two strawberry plants and nestle them into a single colander.
3. Fill in the empty spaces with alyssum.
4. Add extra strawberries for a fun pop of color.

DIY Easter "baskets" filled with the gift that keeps on giving--gorgeous foliage and delicious strawberries by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Maintenance:
1. Strawberries need at least 8 hours of full sun!

Strawberry Plant

Image via Bonnie Plants

Give your guests a lush treat planted with strawberries and alyssum. By Carmen Johston Gardens

Give your guests a lush treat planted with strawberries and alyssum.

When you’re done, simply place one “basket” at each place setting for your guests. Don’t they just scream spring? I could not be more in love with this idea or the season that inspired it. Now go and get yourself some juicy strawberries! I know you’ve got to be craving them by now.

Quick and Easy Plant Decor: Easter Topiaries 4

For more Easter fun, be sure to check out our Easter Egg Topiary!

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

As you all know, spring is here! I’m sure that many of you are headed out of town for spring break and I want to make sure that you don’t come home to house full of dead plants.

Here’s how it’s done:

1. Invest in some water globes. They are a life saver–a plant life saver, that is! They will also save you some time and money as well.

How to Keep Your Plants Alive: Tips for Watering Indoor Plants by Carmen Johnston Gardens

How to Keep Your Plants Alive: Tips for Watering Indoor Plants by Carmen Johnston Gardens

A water globe working its magic in my house to help keep my hydrangeas alive. (Photo by Carmen)

2. Put your pots and pans to work! Fill each one up with about 2 inches of water and your plants will have plenty to drink.

How to Keep Your Plants Alive: Tips for Watering Indoor Plants by Carmen Johnston Gardens

How to Keep Your Plants Alive: Tips for Watering Indoor Plants by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Easy, right? Now you can enjoy your dip in the pool or nap on the beach knowing that your plants are staying hydrated too.

I hope that spring has been good to you so far. This green thumb gal is loving every minute of it!

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

Has it been 21 days already? The countdown to spring has really flown by. I can say that now but only because the weather is finally starting to feel like…well…spring.

I know that at the beginning of this series I promised you 28 container gardens for spring. However, today I want to take a little detour.

Did you know that today is National Plant a Flower Day? Cool, huh? Such an awesome day calls for an equally awesome celebration, which reminds me of one of the coolest planting parties I have ever attended…

Spark children's passion for gardening with a Mustache you to come plant garden themed birthday party by Carmen Johnston Gardens

I am super passionate about teaching kids how to plant. I love to see their little faces light up when they realize that, Wow! Gardening is fun! Last year, my friends Jamie and Melissa asked me to help with their daughter’s birthday party. Katie, the birthday girl, had very specific ideas about the kind of party she wanted to have. She could not have picked two more unrelated themes–gardening and mustaches. Thus, the ‘I Mustache You to Come & Plant’ Party was born.

Spark children's passion for gardening with a Mustache you to come plant garden themed birthday party by Carmen Johnston Gardens

We created a planting station complete with soil, pots, and plants galore. There were geraniums (red), creeping jenny (chartreuse), and bacopa (white). Each kid had their own placemat where they could work on their plants. Of course, their favorite part was playing with the worms.

Spark children's passion for gardening with a Mustache you to come plant garden themed birthday party by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Everyone, meet James. He is my next door neighbor and he had so much fun at Katie’s party that he had us come and host a similar party at his school. What a sweetheart!

Spark children's passion for gardening with a Mustache you to come plant garden themed birthday party by Carmen Johnston Gardens

This is something that can really be fun for the whole family. It is also a great way to get your kids interested in learning about plants. If you are looking for a new activity for your kids this spring, a planting party is definitely worth a try.

Spark children's passion for gardening with a Mustache you to come plant garden themed birthday party by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Happy National Plant a Flower Day, everyone! Now go and get some dirt under your nails. It is good for the soul.

Missed one of the days of our 28 Days of Spring Container Gardens? Catch up here…

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Day Six

Day Seven

Day Eight

Day Nine

Day Ten

Day Eleven

Day Twelve

Day Thirteen

Day Fourteen

Day Fifteen

Day Sixteen

Day Seventeen

Day Eighteen

Day Nineteen

Day Twenty

Day Twenty One

Day Twenty Two

Day Twenty Three

Day Twenty Four

Day Twenty Five

Day Twenty Six

Day Twenty Seven

Day Twenty Eight

Photos: Sara Monty Photo & Design

Easter is only a month away, which can only mean one thing…

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Once again, it is time for me to show you how to decorate your topiaries for the holiday ahead. I have already shown you how to create a vibrant topiary for spring using nothing but citrus and a little imagination. I have also given you some tips for turning your topiary into a stunning display for Valentine’s Day with only a handful of nandina berries and a touch of whimsy. But today is all about Easter, which just so happens to be one of my favorite holidays. I love how everything is suddenly light and airy and pastel. I also don’t mind the fact that buying large amounts of candy is not only accepted but expected as well. More than anything, I am so very thankful for the true meaning that Easter holds and I look forward to the reminder every year.

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Have you ever purchased something because you just knew it was special, but then you didn’t really know what to do with it? That is the story behind these stunning, hand blown and hand painted eggs. I found them in Vienna, but had no idea what to use them for once I got them home. Today, they have found their purpose.

1. Layer your favorite eggs around the base of the topiary to create a skirt.

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

2. Add fresh cut blooms, using different shapes and sizes to create depth. For long lasting color, place your blooms in water picks that you can find at your local craft store. These lenten roses look incredible, don’t they?

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

3. If you have supplies left over, use them to adorn the base of the container as well.

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

My husband found this empty bird’s nest in our yard. Such a sweet touch!

Easter Topiaries: Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Now you have a lovely sideboard topiary for Easter day. Enjoy!

Quick and easy plant decor... hand painted eggs nestled with florals. by Carmen Johnston Gardens

 

Quick and Easy Plant Decor: The 5-Minute Centerpiece  6

I think you guys will also love this citrus topiary!

 

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

I’m just going to say it…Today’s post rules!

Why is it so amazing? I’m glad you asked! One of my main goals for this blog is to make gardening accessible for everyone. I am passionate about making people passionate about gardening. Being surrounded by beautiful plants is such a blessing and I want everyone to experience that. How exactly does today’s post do that? Well, I am offering you 3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Effortless Entertaining. I like to call each of these glass gardens. (Be sure to read until the end for a very special surprise!)

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

For each of these glass gardens I am using clippings of Soft Caress Mahonia. We planted tons of it in our side yard to hide the hideous air conditioning units. I had no idea that I would fall in love with this foliage, but I did and now I can’t get enough.

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

This first glass garden could not be any easier! Simply fill a glass bowl with water and then submerge a few sprigs. Feel free to move them around until you are happy with the placement. Such an easy way to bring some green into your home when it is your time to host!

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

I really love this next glass garden because it turns your foliage into a work of art.

I purchased these glass frames from Homeart several years ago. You can use them to bring any corner of your home to life. Just place a few sprigs between the glass and then get ready to impress your guests.

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

This might be my favorite glass garden yet! Simply take the framed clippings that you have just created above and lay them flat for place settings or serving trays. They will add an element of elegance to any surface surrounded by guests.

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Side Note: I have recently kicked my coffee drinking habit and have switched over to tea. There is nothing like a hot cup of tea on a cold day. My favorite is chai tea with fresh ginger and honey. Mmm…So good!

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

The thing I love most about glass gardens (and what I hope you will appreciate too) is how quick and easy they are to create.

They can also be pretty amazing to look at…

3 Ways to Bring Your Garden Inside for Entertaining: Glass Gardens  by Carmen Johnston Gardens

Images via Chihuly | Dallas Arboretum

A few years ago I visited the Dallas Arboretum. If you appreciate beauty at all, this botanical garden is a must see. What did I find there? The ultimate glass gardens, of course!

Have a great weekend! Oh, and before you go…

I just had to share one of my favs with you…giving away three glass frames.

I promise you will love them!

(Must be a resident of the United States and 18 or older to enter and win.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You have probably noticed by now that I really like to use unusual containers for my gardens. Don’t get me wrong, I like a nice terra cotta pot every now and then but I also like to mix it up. I have had this particular container for years! It is so simple, yet so special. Seriously, it can make anything look good. However, today’s plant doesn’t need any help looking good.

Soil to Centerpiece: Bringing Blooms Indoors with Carmen Johnston Gardens

Hellebores, or Lenten Roses, are perennials, which means that they come back every year. I just had to show them off while they are still in bloom. With the help of my bubble vase, these Lenten Roses make the perfect centerpiece.

Soil to Centerpiece: Bringing Blooms Indoors with Carmen Johnston Gardens

Soil to Centerpiece: Bringing Blooms Indoors with Carmen Johnston Gardens

Don’t be afraid to let the roots show either! I have really grown to love the raw look of a plant’s roots.

Soil to Centerpiece: Bringing Blooms Indoors with Carmen Johnston Gardens

Tips:
1. When you are done with your centerpiece, plant your roses in a shady area.
2. Make sure that the soil drains well. She does not like wet feet!

Soil to Centerpiece: Bringing Blooms Indoors with Carmen Johnston Gardens

Visit Gardening Know How for more information on how to care for this soil to centerpiece plant.

You won’t want to miss our Container Gardens for Spring series. 28 days of beautiful ideas and tutorials just for you!

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

Alright, rule breakers–this one is for you! Have you ever heard of a succulent sconce? Me neither, so I decided to invent one. That is one amazing thing about breaking the rules–every now and then you create something completely new.

Here’s how it’s done…

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

Ingredients:
1. Succulents
2. Sconce

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

You can use whichever succulents you choose. Just make sure that they are small enough for your sconce. These beauties were left over from another project of mine.

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

Directions:
1. Use petite terra cotta pots to house your succulents
2. Hot glue pots to your sconce
3. Use moss to hide glue.

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

I purchased this sconce at Scott Antique Markets after falling in love with its dreamy shade of green.

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

Maintenance:
1. Add two ice cubes every two weeks to each plant to hydrate your plants.
2. Keep next to a sunny window.

This is the perfect container garden for inside your home. Succulents do not need a lot of room or a lot of water to grow. Just place it next to a sunny window and they will be super happy.

Ok, everyone…I have a little confession to make…

I am a container hoarder. I prefer the word “collector” though. My potting shed is full of containers and I’m sure that my husband would be happy to see them all go.

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

But look how happy they make me!

Shopping for new containers is one of my favorite things to do. It is also one of my favorite ways to break the rules. I call it, thinking outside the pot. There are so many containers out there that are just begging to be filled with flowers and it is our job to find them.

28 Container Gardens for Spring by Carmen Johnston Gardens: Break the Rules with a Succulent Sconce

What are some of your favorite “outside the pot” containers?

#BreakTheRules

Missed one of the days of our 28 Days of Spring Container Gardens? Catch up here…

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Day Six

Day Seven

Day Eight

Day Nine

Day Ten

Day Eleven

Day Twelve

Day Thirteen

Day Fourteen

Day Fifteen

Day Sixteen

Day Seventeen

Day Eighteen

Day Nineteen

Day Twenty

Day Twenty One

Day Twenty Two

Day Twenty Three

Day Twenty Four

Day Twenty Five

Day Twenty Six

Day Twenty Seven

Day Twenty Eight

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

Did you know that spring is only 28 days away? I could not be more excited, which is why I am counting down the days with 28 Container Gardens for Spring. Every day for the next 28 days I will be sharing with you all a new plant recipe for spring. They are both easy to assemble and easy on the eyes. Every plant I have chosen can be found at your local garden center/grocery store. Basically, there is no excuse for you to not join me in welcoming spring into your home.

Before we get started, here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind.

No. 1 – Choose containers with good drainage
No. 2 – Use good potting soil
No. 3 – Follow the recipe!

So, what is the recipe? I’m glad you asked! When putting together a container garden the only recipe that you will ever need is The Three T’s–Tall + Thick + Trailing. This is an easy way for you to establish balance and texture in your garden. However, for all you rule breakers out there, don’t feel like you have to follow this rule. During the next 28 days we will be sharing a few alternatives too.

Let’s get started with our very first garden recipe for spring!

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Ingredients:
1. Phalaenopsis Orchid (Tall)
2. Fittonia (Thick)
3. Lemon Button Fern (Trailing)

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Directions:
1. First, give your plants plenty to drink.
2. Then, start by adding your tall plant first.
3. Next, add your thick plant for more texture.
4. Finally, complete the look with your trailing plant.

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Maintenance:
1. Remember to water your orchid at least once a week. (Tip: A handful of ice cubes works great too!)
2. This container loves a sunny window!

This past summer I was able to visit the amazing garden center Terrain. It is incredible! The best part is that they will ship anything in the store directly to your home. I was like a kid in a candy store and all of the containers were just my taste.

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Terrain

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Terrain

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

Terrain

The container for today’s garden recipe was one of my purchases from that trip. So worth it! It is perfectly petite and looks great for any occasion.

28 days of Container Gardens for Spring with Carmen Johnston Gardens: Phalaenopsis Orchid, Fittonia, Lemon Button Fern

As we countdown the days until spring, I would love to see what you all are creating. Please feel free to share your own garden recipes!

Missed one of the days of our 28 Days of Spring Container Gardens? Catch up here…

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Day Six

Day Seven

Day Eight

Day Nine

Day Ten

Day Eleven

Day Twelve

Day Thirteen

Day Fourteen

Day Fifteen

Day Sixteen

Day Seventeen

Day Eighteen

Day Nineteen

Day Twenty

Day Twenty One

Day Twenty Two

Day Twenty Three

Day Twenty Four

Day Twenty Five

Day Twenty Six

Day Twenty Seven

Day Twenty Eight

Photos: The Photography of Haley Sheffield

Inquire About Your Next Event:

Email: carmen@carmenjohnstongardens.com

Phone: 762-822-7696