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Pretties for your children AND your home

Fall Decor Kid Friendly Activities Pumpkins Wild Roots Gardening

I will be the first to admit that I have a black thumb (wouldn't that be the opposite of a green thumb?!) when it comes to gardening. However, like many of my fellow plant killers, I have high Pinterest aspirations for my porch and planters. So what does one do when their mind and Pinterest boards are full of pumpkins and fall porch decor? 

Lucky for me, the answer was found in my sweet friend and owner of Wild Roots Gardening, Jessica Oliver. She invited the kids and me over to learn first hand about creating practical and beautiful planters and fall porch decor. 

She's a busy momma like me (and you). Knowing that time and know-how was most likely at a low for most of us, she shared three beautiful and do-able design ideas to use as we decorate for fall. 

 3 Things You Should Know About Fall Decor

1 - You can never have too many pumpkins and gourds. 

When you're creating exterior decor for your porch styling, plan for little hands with pumpkins and gourds. Swath your pumpkins, layered in with gourds, down one side of your entrance. I suggest swaths that start at top and run all the way to the bottom of your stairs or split the difference and go halfway down on each side. Design a look that extends past the container & have your kids involved while you do it! Placing the decorative accents is a great puzzle to them and they will delight in it.

Tip: If your kids ding up one of the pumpkins and the flesh is showing, cover the pumpkin wound with rubber cement and it will seal it from further deterioration!

Jessica brought out several baskets full of pumpkins and gourds and let the kids place them on the steps. Of course, their locations moved many times over the course of our visit. Luckily, the beauty of Jessica's kid friendly decor is that they feel pride in their contribution and there is no right or wrong way to do it. 

2 -Fall is a great time to bring in some containers that are non-permanent.

The woven textures and brown colors of natural baskets are a perfect way to achieve a Fall look. These are laundry baskets with faux leather handles. The handles add such a nice touch. Group materials for a better impact. There are so many ways to be creative in the garden! Sometimes you might wonder what’s special about that when you see plants styled in a basket, but it’s someone’s time that they have taken to fluff their nest. Time is precious and home should be somewhere you can’t wait to get back to!

 #3 Fall is for a focus on foliage.

Harmonious colors in purple, reddish and yellow tones with variegated leaves, recreate the color and contrast of what’s happening in nature this time of year. Fill up your containers with all this layered goodness but don’t cover up your container that you have invested in. Let the plants and container shine equally, fluffing them till they’re purdy and it makes you smile! 

Get the look: woven laundry basket with the traditional Fall mum look including Mum, Evergold Carex, and one permanent botanical stem. 


Get the look: 1st planter: Southern Living Purple Pixie Loropetalum, Southern Living Romeo Cleyera, Neon Sedum and Bronze Ajuga with permanent botanical stem accents  |  2nd planter: Variegated cone boxwood ringed w/ variegated ivy

The best part about fluffing the nest with Jessica was that the kids really did have a chance to be involved. So often I give up on decorating an area because it's hard to find the time when I'm wrangling four kids, five and under. We did this on a cool morning before mother's morning out drop off and had a blast.

No really, it was fun! Everyone was in a good mood. They really did help AND it was fun for us all. I have to say this because if I hadn't lived it then I would have rolled my eyes reading all of this and thought, "There is no way my crazy kids will be "helpful" while I decorate my porch before school." HAHA! Listen Momma, you can do this!

A special thank you to Jessica and her two darling kiddos for having us over to learn and decorate together. Jackie is wearing her pink cord skirt from the Carolina Floral Skirt Set while my kiddos have on the pumpkin appliquéd shirt and Tatum Floral Skirt, Appliquéd Pumpkin Pocket Dress, and Pumpkin Romper.


Georgia Anne


Jessica Oliver is the founder and owner of Athens, Georgia based gardening business, Wild Roots Gardening. She creates custom designed planters for homeowners and businesses. Her motto is, "Let Wild Roots fluff your nest©." and her services do just that! Wild Roots works hard to make the whole process of planters, porch stylings and exterior decor easy and convenient. You don’t have to run around piecing it all together! If plants aren’t your thing, or you don’t have the time, ability, or desire to pull it all together, we get it! Wild Roots gardening service can handle your needs. Follow Jessica on Instagram @wildrootsathens to see tons of inspirations. If you're in the Athens or surrounding area, give her a call and let her fluff your nest. Make sure to tell her that Grace and James Kids sent you!

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