If you’ve been with me for a while, you might remember the DIY hanging garden sphere that I shared this past spring. I made it by clipping together two wire hanging basket cages.
Little did I know that the sphere would become a nursery for eight adorable baby juncos – two nests with four chicks each!
The baby juncos are long gone and, now that the holidays are upon us, these two hanging basket cages have a new job – this time as a lighted sphere for my front porch.
You can pretty much see how I made it just by looking at the photo – except for that spiky white thing inside.
So what is that thing?
The Secret Ingredient
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It’s a huge allium seed head! It bloomed purple over the summer and then dried to a soft straw color.
I photographed it in a child’s car seat to give you an idea of just how huge it is.
There are so many varieties of larger alliums, and I don’t remember exactly which one I planted. But my educated guess is that it’s an Allium schubertii.
In early fall, when the blossom had gone to seed, I cut it and let it dry in my greenhouse.
Dressing Up The Allium Seed Head
I sprayed painted it with Rust-Oleum Specialty Metallic in silver. It looked okay, but it didn’t really pop. So I sprayed over that with a light coat of Krylon Glitter Shimmer in opulent opal. That gave it a little more of the holiday glam I was looking for.
Then I put the painted seed head inside the two hanging baskets and clipped the baskets together using the fastening clips from one of the hanging basket chains.
Getting the allium inside the sphere without damaging it was a bit of a challenge, but I just did my best.
Lighting the Sphere
I used a 20-foot length of indoor-outdoor, green-wired clear incandescent mini lights, but a safer option would probably have been LED mini lights since they don’t burn as hot.
I just secured the strand of lights with as many twist ties as was necessary, wrapping the strand around the outer circumference of the sphere several times and spacing the lights as evenly as I could.
I hung the sphere from a hook on the porch and voila – we now have a fun and budget-friendly addition to our outdoor Christmas lights.
And it’s large enough to lend a chandelier-like elegance to the front porch.
Of course, this sphere would look good even without the allium in the middle. But since I had it, I thought it was a fun addition.
This isn’t the first time I’ve used allium seed heads in holiday decor. A couple of years ago, I made a frozen allium forest for our vintage putz church.
Except for possibly publishing a guest post or two, I’m putting this blog down for its annual “long winter’s nap.”
So I’m wishing you and your loved ones the very best of the holiday season, and I look forward to sharing more with you in the New Year!
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