Hostas help to dress up BBQ beverages

I love this time of year when we can entertain outdoors and the gardens are full of summer plants and flowers.

There's something nice about heading out into the garden and snipping a few of our own treasures rather than purchasing them from a floral supplier.

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The following are a few ideas for a perfect outdoor barbecue this summer.

Welcome guests this season with a cold beverage in a pretty ice bucket decorated with hosta leaves. If you don't happen to have a hosta plant in your garden simply substitute with another wide-leaf green.

A galvanized metal bucket works well for this. You can find them at your local hardware stores. Cut four-five large hosta leaves and rinse them of any dirt or debris. Measure the length of the side of the bucket and snip the stem off the hosta leaf to correspond to the same length.

Using a little double-sided tape, apply the fresh hosta leaves one by one until the entire circumference of the bucket is covered. To secure the leaves, simply wrap two-three strands of raffia or another type of ribbon around the bucket and tie a bow.

Fill the bucket with ice and place at your bar area for your guests to enjoy.

If you are attending a party this summer why not try an organic style of wrap? Next time you are at your local post office pick up a roll of plain, brown wrapping paper. Use this to wrap the recipient's gift.

Finish off the gift with a large leaf green from your garden. I love to use oversized hydrangea leaves or hostas. If you choose five or so larger leaves you can lay them out in a flower pattern on the front side of the gift. A glue gun may be used to secure them.

I have also used indoor plant leaves for this idea (Dracena leaves work beautifully).

barb@lunter.ca

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