Watching this garland go up yesterday, it occurred to me that the real story of our holiday landscaping is about the people who make it all happen. Rob, Sunne, Monica, Christine, Shannon, Scott and Margarita make sure that Detroit Garden Works is stocked with every material we might need. From fresh cut great quality greens,branches and cones, picks in every conceivable color and style, lighting both stock and custom made, to zip ties and bamboo poles in bulk, this wide range of materials makes it possible to put a look together. If you shop at Detroit Garden Works, you probably have put the names with the faces, as they do such a great job of interacting with people.
The people who work for the landscape design and installation division, Deborah Silver and Co, work behind the scenes. They do all the fabrication, and installation of our projects. It may be startling that a group of people who know how to lay out a landscape, plant, and finish an installation know how to construct and install winter and holiday containers and garlands, but they do. Each one of the eight of them has their particular strengths. To their great credit, they all know how to work well with one another to bring a project to life. They certainly deserve the lion’s share of the credit for everything we do.
The columns are quite beautiful. They did not need anything in the way of decoration. My preference was that the garland would seem to drop at the outside edge of the porch roof. The fascia would need enough screws and concrete wire to hold the heavy garland. Owen and David, who usually take the lead in an installation, added a pair of vinyl covered steel poles at either end. This would provide an armature that would take the garland wide of the columns.
Four people and 4 pairs of hands made the business of getting the garland aloft a graceful and fairly quick affair. All of the design and fabrication issues had been dealt with in the garage. All of the installation issues were reviewed and planned on the ground. It was easy to locate the center of the porch roof. The dentil molding on the underside of the overhand was symmetrical. This garland would be hung in the center first, and then progressively, out to each edge.
Everyone involved with hanging the garland could rely on the integrity of the fabrication. The top, bottom and front face of the garland was clearly marked. The plug for the lights was on the left side, as the only exterior electrical outlet was on that side. Every element, even those we attach on long wires to permit rearranging, were securely attached.
We did put lighted winter containers on the porch, on either side of the door. The porch roof makes this a dark spot, in spite of a ceiling fixture. A pair of wire baskets were lined with moss sheeting, and filled with mulch and soil. The centerpieces were comprised of several bunches of cut pussy willow. Fresh cut magnolia and gold poly mesh added another layer of interest. AG does most of our exterior lighting and hookups. A strand of lights tucked behind the magnolia would light the pussy willow at night. A strand of garland lights would illuminate the mixed noble and silver fir. An extension cord was place right next to the step up into the house, and covered with a door mat, for safety’s sake.