Holiday-Inspired Outdoor Decorating that Lasts

Dress up your front porch and yard with these holiday outdoor decorating ideas that last from the first days of fall through the New Year. They look great on a porch or just outside your door.

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Outdoor Christmas Decorating Ideas

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Grow Beautiful Amaryllis

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Deer-Resistant Shade Plants

Gardening in the shade where deer are plentiful can be a challenging situation. But there are plants that thrive in the shade that aren't tempting to hungry deer. Although no plant can be considered completely deer-resistant, here's a list of shade dwellers that most deer avoid. Plus, we've added some fun facts about deer that might help you understand them better.

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Shrubs with Winter Interest

A winter landscape has a beauty all its own. An unexpected plant feature -- winter blooms that perfume the air, bright berries, colorful or textured foliage or unusual bark -- add a welcome element to gardens. These winter shrubs will not disappoint.

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Tips for Moving Plants Indoors

Here's a handy guide for moving your favorite plants inside once the weather turns cold.

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An Easy Pear Tree

One of fall's favorite fruits, the pear, takes center stage as a decorating motif with its gentle colors and elegant shape.

What You Need

  • Clay flowerpot
  • Acrylic paint in pale gray and olive green
  • Soft lint-free rag
  • 1-1/2-inch-diameter birch or other branch, approximately 18 inches long
  • Glue gun and hotmelt adhesive
  • Floral foam
  • 6-inch-diameter plastic
  • Foam ball
  • Sheet moss
  • Tacky crafts glue
  • 95-100 small silk-like leaves
  • Gold metallic spray paint
  • 45-55 yellow and green artificial miniature pears

Make It

  1. Rub gray and green paint onto the pot to give it an aged look. Let dry.
  2. Center the branch in the pot and tack it in place with hot glue. Wedge pieces of floral foam around the branch to hold it upright and straight. Glue the floral foam and branch in place.
  3. Press the other end of the branch into the plastic foam ball, centering it. If necessary, carve out a hole for the branch. Hot-glue the branch in place. Using tacky glue, affix a very light coating of moss over the ball. Glue additional moss over the floral foam in the pot.
  4. Spray-paint both sides of the leaves gold, letting the paint dry between coats. Trim the wire stems from the leaves.
  5. Starting at the bottom, hot-glue a row of pears around the base of the ball. Work up the sides and to the top, gluing concentric rows of pears to the ball. Fit the pears together as tightly as possible. Always keep the bottom of the pear toward the ball but vary the angles slightly.
  6. After completely covering the ball, glue leaves into the open spaces between the pears. See the photograph for details.

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