The large blossoms on the Southern magnolia trees are impressive and a favorite flower among many people. The fresh blooms make impressive floral arrangements. After the bloom is spent, the tree is covered with beautiful large leathery leaves and cone-shaped pods. Drying them allows you to utilize them in various ways such as decorative accents in arrangements and wreaths.
Gather mature leaves and seed pods from your magnolia tree during the summer months after the petals from the magnolia blossoms have dropped. Set them uncovered on a sunny windowsill for a week to dry.
Spray dried magnolia leaves and dried pods with gold paint. Let the paint dry according to the directions and set the leaves and pods aside.
Glue the sheet moss to the front of your grapevine wreath with a hot glue gun. Cover the entire front of the wreath with the moss.
Glue the base of a magnolia leaf to the moss at the 10 o'clock position. The tip of the leaf should extend over the outside edge of the wreath. Glue a second leaf so the base of that leaf overlaps the base of the first leaf. The second leaf should also extend past the outside edge of the wreath at a slightly different angle from the first one. Repeat with the remaining leaves, with all bases touching and fanning out at different angles. If need be, angle a few of the leaves so they extend over the inside edge of the wreath and point toward the center.
Cut the stems off the roses. Place a dab of glue on the bottom of each rose and adhere them to the top of your glued-leaf bases. When completed, the heads will face up and be clustered tightly together.
Put glue on the broad end of a pod and insert it under a flower. It will lay on its side and resemble a pine cone. Repeat with the remaining pods until they surround the roses in a pleasing arrangement.
Cut a 20-inch piece of paddle wire. Insert the end of the wire through the center of your florist's bow. Loop the wire around the wreath at the 6 o'clock position and twist the ends of the wire on the back of the wreath to secure the bow. The streamers from the bow will trail from the bottom of your wreath.
Loop a 12-inch wire around the wreath at the 12 o'clock position and twist the ends together tightly. This provides a loop for hanging your wreath.
Sheet moss is sold in bags at your local craft supply store. Floral picks of red berries can be added to this wreath. Faux magnolias can be substituted for the roses.
Wear rubber gloves when handling the pods as they can cause allergic reactions in some people. Spray paint your leaves and pods in a well-ventilated area.