A recent cold snap left my urns on the front porch looking like this - not exactly the warm welcome I was looking for. I really wanted something a little nicer looking both for the holidays and the days following, but didn't want to invest in plants at the moment. Here is a solution that has worked in the past and will work for you if you have an assortment of plant materials in your yard.
The soil was literally frozen the day that I did this so I used a dowel to make holes for the greenery.
Visually, three textures mixed together make a nice arrangement. So I started with Leland Cypress branches. I cut them in lengths of about 15" and used around 5 per pot. A trick, odd numbers work better in arrangements.
The next layer consists of branches from our Christmas tree. I tucked them in around the bottom of the cypress. Now all of the ugly stuff in the pot is covered.
Next, I used Nandina sprigs to give the arrangement a smooth, waxy texture.
Finally for a splash of color, I used Nandina berries and a sprig from another Nandina that happens to have red foilage. The birds beat me to the berries or I would have used 3 clusters per pot instead of one.
I'm so happy with they way the reds all work together.
Just a little reminder about the 2010 Christmas Tour of Homes that begins tomorrow.