Compost those branches--later

You can do things with an interesting branch rather than just tossing it in the compost pile. You can spray-paint branches (or not) to use for free and instant decoration in the house. The spray paint helps to preserve the branch, keeping it from drying out and crumbling. The drawback is that once painted, you can't compost the branch later.

Outside, decorate a potted plant, either adding the branch upright to add a vertical element, as here where a rose clipping is added to a pot of Ophiopogon planiscapus nigrescens (Black Mondo Grass):

Or horizontally, to hide a bare spot or to add some twisted, writhing texture:

Even more interesting is when the sun casts the shadow of the branch on a nearby wall. If you have an interior pot, aim an inexpensive uplight at the branches to create shadow patterns on the ceiling.

If you have bamboo stakes lying around the yard, gather them all as display into an empty spot. Then they can function in two ways--decoration, and as a way of keeping stakes at hand for supporting a tilting plant.

And there's always the compost pile if you get tired of it, if it gets dusty, or if you find a better looking branch.


  1. Hi, I was wondering if I could use the second photo - Branch4411.jpg - in a school project. The class is about copyright, so it's important that I do it all by the book. I would need just some sort of written authorisation to use your copyrighted photo for this one-time use, or you could release it into the public domain if you liked ( ) .

    Thanks for your consideration,

    Anthony Mercuri

  2. ok, email me and I will email you one-time authorization. click on 'Hoover Boo' under 'About moi' on the rhs of the page for email address.


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