We love the winter holidays here at our Carmel Valley Farm Stand. Whether you are close enough to be a local regular at our Farm Stand, you make a pilgrimage when you’re visiting Central California, or you just swoon over its farmy organic charm from afar, there’s a little something here for everyone.
First, we’ve decided that we need Pie Day every week, not just on 3.14 (for all you math geeks out there ?). Wednesday is Pie Day at the Farm Stand we’ll offer sweet, flaky, wonderful organic pies to you deserving people on that special day. Every week.
In case you won’t be joining us in person, here’s a mouthwatering pie recipe you can make on your own Pie Day. It’s a great way to ace your holiday Hump Day.
This Harvest Pie with Apples, Pears, and Cranberries has been a holiday favorite around these parts for more than ten years.
Make Your Own Wreath
Do you admire those casually stunning wreaths made from natural seasonal greenery? Us, too. And our Guru of Gorgeousness, Janna Jo Williams, leads wreath-making workshops every year at the Farm Stand.
You can make your own with a few tips from Janna Jo.
“In our regular wreath workshop, participants start by making their own wreath form using grapevines from a nearby organic vineyard,” says Janna. “But you can start with a pre-made grapevine form – they’re widely available.”
Before you begin, assemble your supplies.
- Foliage: gather up some of your favorite seasonal greenery, either from your yard or a friend’s yard or even a local florist. Janna typically has sprays of evergreen (like cedar, juniper, fir or pine), eucalyptus, and laurel, as well as some foliage with nice red winter berries like holly, pepper tree berries, and pyracantha. You can also use pine cones or other seasonal seed pods if you have them.
- Tools: it’s helpful to have pruning shears (for snipping foliage), garden gloves (to protect your hands), and jute twine if your greens need securing in the wreath. .
- Some place to hang your creation periodically while you’re making it. A hook? A nail? A coat rack?
Once you have what you’ll be using, lay your wreath form flat on a table. Before you begin to attach your foliage to the wreath form, lay it out on the wreath to see what you like. Do you like something simple with one or two types of greenery or do you want something spectacular in its abundance?
Taking this step will let you test drive the looks you like.
“A trend this year is to leave more exposed grapevines as opposed to covering the entire frame with greenery,” says Janna. “Let’s say a third exposed vines.”
When you’re ready to attach your design, hang your wreath somewhere so you can see exactly how the foliage will fall as you assemble your design.
“Before tucking the greenery stems in between the vines I always strip them down approximately five inches so you are not fighting to squish them in,” suggests Janna. “That also helps prevent scrunched leaves that could get discolored or moldy. Also, tuck and pinch them into two spots, if possible, for a sturdier hold. The greenery stems will shrink a little as they dry out.”
Continue until you’ve assembled the design you like. If you the foliage seems too floppy or loose, you can use discrete pieces of natural twine to secure your design where needed.
To keep your wreath fresh and lively through the season, mist it every few days with a spray bottle.