If you’ve ever been torn between the desire to tidy up the dead seed heads of spent summer blooms and the knowledge that you would be taking away a food source for wild birds, this is a project that will give you (and the birds) the best of both worlds.
Trim back those spent blooms, but save them and tuck them into an attractive and functional grapevine wreath bird feeder you created yourself from a few simple, everyday items.
What you need:
- spatter screen (you may get lucky and find one at a garage sale)
- grapevine wreath, approx. the same size as your spatter screen
- wire, florist wire is good
- twine or rope for hanging
- assorted seed heads, stems on, such as coneflower, black-eyed susan, zinnia, sunflowers, milkweed pods, etc.
- hook for hanging, if needed
- silk flower accent (optional)
With wire cutters or a hacksaw, remove the handle from the spatter screen.
Cut the twine or rope into three, approximately 48-inch lengths. Tie each of the three lengths of twine around the wreath at evenly-spaced intervals and tie the ends together above the wreath.
Flip the wreath over on your work surface and place the spatter screen on the back of the wreath. Thread a length of wire through the screen near the edge and then around a sturdy vine in the wreath, twisting the ends together to secure. Do this in at least three or four intervals around the wreath until the screen is tightly bound to the wreath.
Continue around until the wreath is covered. I couldn’t resist tucking in one silk flower for accent. Can you spot it?
Fill with your favorite birdseed.
Hang your bird feeder wreath by the hook or over a branch or shepherd’s hook.
P.S. If this looks familiar, you may have seen my article in a recent Birds & Blooms magazine.