I have absolutely no training as a florist, but I love working with real flowers, and have found that they're much more durable and forgiving than I originally thought.
And I love to use any kind of real greens, including the stuff normally thrown away during floral arranging, or even stuff just gathered from the yard. Like this amazingly easy real leaf garland I made to add a little jungle to our juice (in a kid-friendly way) at the Jungle Jam birthday party.
You could use any kind of leaf for this garland, so go for what is available and abundant. Similarly, you could use any kind of twine, string, or ribbon as the base, so choose whatever is inexpensive and on hand. I used regular curling ribbon for two reasons: first, I liked the narrow, flat surface for gluing; second, I have a magical spool of it that I've owned and used for at least 10 years that never runs out. Swear to God.
To make the garland, all you need to do is cut your desired length of ribbon, and start gluing. Really. That's it.
After I made this sample garland, I started having all sorts of fun ideas for this technique. Wouldn't it make adorable cake bunting?
Or what about even wrapping gifts with it?? I decided to give it a go. I didn't have any real presents to give, so I wrapped up a box of Puffs Plus tissues. Classiest tissues EVER.
I love using only plain wrapping papers and getting creative with the ribbons and decorations instead. I used my leaf garland for the ribbon, then added a few fresh spring flowers for the bow.
Doesn't it look springy and elegant? I'm definitely going to start wrapping my presents like this. Sure, you can't wrap presents with fresh greens a week ahead of time, but let's be serious, I'm always wrapping presents about 5 minutes before I'm supposed to give them. So I get to procrastinate AND look like I did something incredibly fancy and complicated. (Shh--how easy it is will be our little secret.)