Instead of throwing them in the trash or compost, use invasive vines to make a wild grapevine wreath for your home decor. Add a few decorations to hang on your front door.
How many times have you purchased a grapevine wreath at craft stores like Michaels? I know I have purchased many. They are not very expensive, and they work well with so many projects.
However, did you know you can make a natural grapevine wreath from vines you may have growing in your backyard?
Here's a pic of a wild grapevine (Vitis spp.) growing in the garden. It's a real pest, and I do my best to pull it out during the season.
However, invariably there are still some around when it comes time for winter cleanup. Like this long one pictured above.
Making a Grapevine Wreath
Instead of throwing it in the compost, or waste pile, I decided to make a grapevine wreath base from the old vine.
The process is incredibly simple. Just soak old grapevines in a bucket of warm water for about an hour. This will make them softer and flexible.
If you are using fresh living vines you can let them dry out for a couple of days after you cut them. Then you can easily strip the leaves from the vines. I'd leave the tendrils. They offer great accents to the wreath.
Pull the vines out of the bucket, and start at one end, making a circular coil.
Use the side branches to wrap around all the vines, keeping them tidy and neat.
Allow the wreath to dry overnight. Then it's ready for any decor project. They last a long time, so you can also store them for future use.
If you don't have grapevines growing in your area, you can make your own wreaths from other vines too such as Wisteria (Wisteria frutescens). Here's a good video on how to make a wreath vine from fresh Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia) and Honeysuckle (Lonicera spp.).
Safety Note: Make sure you know what you are working with, so you don't end up making a wreath with poison ivy.
You can make them as big or small as your harvest allows. If you have a ton of vines, you might consider selling these wild grapevine wreaths at a local market. With zero cost in materials and very little production time, the profit margins are pretty good.
- Fresh or dried wild grapevines
- Hand pruners
- Large plastic tub
- Cut several yards of wild grapevine.
- Soak the vines in a large bucket of water to soften the vines. If the vines are fresh and malleable you don't need to soak them.
- Pull the vines out of the bucket, and start at one end, making a circular coil.
- Take any side branches and wrap them into the wreath too.
- Continue wrapping the vines around and over each other until you get the size you want.
- Allow the wreath to dry.
- Decorate or hang.
You can use old dried vines. They should be soaked in water to make them more flexible. However, you can also use fresh vines. In that case, you do not need to soak them but can start wrapping them and creating the wreath immediately. Or cut them and let them dry out for a day to make it easier to strip the leaves.