With the festive season now in full swing, it's time to hunt around your garden for some greenery and berries to make a Christmas wreath, either to hang on your front door or as a centrepiece table decoration.

Holly and ivy are the obvious choices and if you're lucky enough to have the holly variety Ilex 'Polycarpa' then you should get some great winter berries. And it is almost without spines so you won't damage your hands in the process. Another effective one is Ilex 'Argentea Marginata' which has a creamy white edging on its leaves, providing a soft contrast with the dark green foliage of many evergreens and red berries.

The most prolific common laurel to look out for is Prunus 'laurocerasus',which will provide you with enough foliage to make numerous wreaths every year.

You can also add blue pine, rosemary for scent, laurel or other evergreens which will keep their colour for months.

Put in some mistletoe, providing some contrasting creamy white berries - and don't forget the fir cones. If you didn't collect any in the woods earlier in the year you can always buy them from garden centres and florists.

Making your own wreath isn't as fiddly a job as you might imagine once you have the right tools to hand. These might include a ready-made circular metal frame, available from any good DIY store or florist, some florist's wire and pliers or wire cutters.

Fresh or dried moss can be secured to the frame by wrapping the wire around it. Alternatively, use a florist's foam ring as the frame and immerse it in water for around 20 minutes to soften it.

Whichever frame you use, decide now where the top of the wreath should be and attach a strong piece of wire as the hook.

Holly and ivy are the stalwarts of any winter decoration - and both are perfect for Christmas wreaths. If you can find some lengths of variegated ivy in the garden plus some holly and seasonal berries, you are more than halfway there.

Before adding the ivy, decide on the direction in which you are going to wind your materials. Beginning at the top, wind the ivy around the frame diagonally, as naturally as you can, and secure it with pieces of florist's wire bent into hairpin shapes.

If you are using a foam ring frame, you don't need to wind the lengths of foliage around the frame, but place the pieces diagonally so it looks as if they've been wrapped around the frame. Everything added after the foliage will be placed within this basic framework.

Push the leaves, berries and other plant bits into the wreath, grouping a few of the same type of foliage together, covering the inside and outside of the ring as you go.

Once you have a base of greenery, the world is your oyster. While traditional wreaths incorporate mistletoe, fir and holly, you can add a wealth of other natural delights, including cones and apples, dried red chillies, nutmegs, clusters of cinnamon sticks, small ornamental squashes and dried fruit and nuts. Clusters of rich red ornamental crabapples look fantastic in a wreath.