Saving Money: Ditch Decor

Now before you get all upset about my title let me explain! I'm not talking about THROWING AWAY your decor! I'm talking about decorating your home - FROM THE DITCH! Yes it's true. Have you ever noticed how beautiful the ditches are in the country? I live in town but we are surrounded by miles of countryside and I noticed some BEAUTIFUL cattails growing in our Illinois ditches. So I talked my hubbie (FINALLY!) into pulling over and helping me cut some - he's such a sweetheart! 


I brought them home and trimmed them up - bugs like to chew on the ends so I just snipped them at an angle to hide the ratty edges and ta-da! Love em! 

These will actually dry like this in your house if you don't put them in water - which is what I want them to do. HOWEVER. Once they are dry after a week or two- you want to SPRAY them and coat them with polyurethane or some other type of sealer - I've even heard that hairspray will work. If you do not do this - the MOMENT you start to see any seeds puffing out - it's time to get rid of them. They will "explode" and release tons of FLUFF all over your house. Not a fun time. 

There are lots of beautiful flowers to be found in the ditches - my sister loved these flowers and the morning of her wedding her entire bridal party went out and picked TONS of flowers from the ditches and we used them for her bouquets and church decorations. Scared me TO DEATH it might rain on our parade and we would have NO flowers but it was beautiful and turned out perfectly - it suited my sister completely to do this for her wedding and saved a TON of money too! I wish I had a picture of our bouquets but unfortunately right now, I don't. 

By the way - be choosy in which ditches you grab these treasures from - if there are TONS of flowers it could be that someone planted a wildflower assortment there and wants to KEEP them there. And please don't pick anything from in front of someone's property. Stick to the ditches in front of fields in the country. You don't want to get in trouble for trespassing! 

Oh and by the way - if I were to BUY these cattails from Hobby Lobby and have a fake arrangement like this - it would have cost me $180 since ONE cattail costs $20 normal price. Who knew?
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4 comments:

  1. LOVE those cattails. Wish I knew where I could find some!

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  2. That is probably the hardest part! I did do some research and discovered they are present in EVERY state in the United States! But the best places are going to be very WET! Which I don't really get how they are in our ditches because its pretty dry here but wet places are the best places to find them!

    http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=TYLA&photoID=tyla_004_avp.tif

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  3. Ann- this ws a great post. Ben actually stops occasionally and picks me "dead flowers" I love to decorate with them (and when you move you just toss them b/c there will always be dead flowers. In fact, he's only gotten "real" (store) flowers for me twice. I prefer ditch flowers. When we moved back to our house, I made him promise to pick me some dead flowers for decorating (or I was taking the old ones with us).

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  4. They turned out great! Nice that they will just dry themselves. Thanks for linking up with DIY under $5!

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