Colleen Nelson - Kultivators

Colleen Nelson, of Momence, gave a presentation on winter gardening containers at the Kankakee Kultivators' Thursday meeting.

Daily Journal staff report

Thursday afternoon at the Kankakee Public Library 4th Floor Conference Room, the Kankakee Kultivators Garden Club hosted an expert gardener who demonstrated how to create winter container garden displays.

Colleen Nelson, whose family owns a wholesale nursery shrub and perennial farm in Momence, was the featured presenter.

Nelson demonstrated several ways to use evergreen branches that can be cut from trees in one’s own yard, moss found on evergreens and even pieces of bark for accent, to create stunning arrangements to decorate the interior and exterior of one’s home or to give as gifts.

Nelson used containers, vases and silverplate pieces she had found at auctions, estate sales and other places. She emphasized one does not have to spend a lot of money on the containers.

In each container, she used pillar candles of different heights, as well as greens and other decor such as Christmas bulbs for accent. A member of the audience questioned whether artificial candles could be used, and it was agreed that was acceptable, though Nelson created the arrangements by using authentic, off-white, nonscented, pillar candles.

She recommended keeping the arrangement in a cool place to keep it fresh and prevent browning of evergreen needles.

There was a question about the use of “Wilt-Pruf,” which is a spray that keeps evergreens fresh, and Nelson said she has used this with outdoor arrangements, but she did not know if this was safe to use for indoor use.

The public always is invited to attend the garden club’s monthly educational presentation, and several members of the Kankakee community were in attendance at this recent presentation.

The Kankakee Kultivators Garden Club welcomes anyone in the community to attend future educational programming that will resume in February 2022.