Tuesday, January 27, 2015

How to Help Gardens Weather Winter Storms

With a sunny, happy winter day tucked in for the night on Sunday, it seems it was the calm before the storm.  
Sitting in my home office loft writing and looking out at the clear, twinkling, movie-set New York skyline just beyond, it seemed unholy to think that in a short time, we’d be bracing for a whopper of a winter storm.  It’s already been labeled #Snowmaggedon2015.  And then it wasn’t.  Somewhat of a bust of a storm but still a whopper.

I’ve just about completed the Recommended Garden books review for Garden Glamour friends and fans.  With nearly a dozen garden and horticulture books featured in my list of recommendations from 2014’s just-published or discovered/introduced to me at events, symposiums, or lectures, this is a gardening, growing, and breeding book list you won’t want to miss.

However, with the news’ escalating drama for 2015’s first major winter snowstorm changing up, forecasters are now calling for a major blizzard.
Therefore, I thought I should change things up, too.

Gardens and plants are resilient, we know.  
Yet judging by even my New York Botanical Garden’s Landscape Design alumni group, concerns about the extreme cold and its lasting effect on the plants is on high concern alert.  One member wrote to ask last week -- before the blizzard warning -- if there is anything any of us could recommend so that her beloved hydrangeas would be in good form to charm the expected visitors to her slice of Eden as part of a larger garden tour.

Last year, as many of you know, the growing season lost the charm and beauty of many of our most beloved summer favorites - especially the flowering hydrangeas - specifically, the Hydrangea macrophylla - the bigleaf or “mophead” hydrangea that gently whispers “summer.”

I adore them.  I inherited the ‘Nikko Blue’ when we moved to our home and added the ‘Lady in Red’ as sassy, summer accessories to the red roses that border the Coral Bark arbor design I did some years ago.
In turn, I use these red and blue beauties to great effect for our Independence Day Fireworks party when friends and family gather to officially kick off the summer, celebrate Mother’s birthday! and watch the fireworks set off in the marina right below us.  It’s grand ol’ flag kind of an affair.

So all can imagine the vast disappointment when last year yielded no/zilch/nada hydrangea blossoms.  Not only the beloved hydrangeas were a no-show, many other woody perennials such as caryopteris, and some evergreen shrubs, including Cherry Laurel, Prunus laurocerasus suffered.  
It wasn’t like we didn’t see it coming.

No. Those of us in the garden design and horticulture tribes had been steeling ourselves for some months, hoping for that miracle that Mother Nature can provide.  It was not meant to be.

However, their “failure to launch” was not due to the Polar Vortex or the bracing winter cold that strangled most of the Northeast last winter.  I don’t want to dismiss the plunge -- It didn’t help to have record-breaking cold. But that’s only a part of the story.
Want more irony/confusion?  2014 was the warmest winter on record - overall -- according to NOAA and NASA, among other leading authorities.  

The issue is climate change -- it’s not global warming as sceptics or #ClimateOstrichs who insist on sticking their head in the rapidly decaying soil want to do.

Plants are not unlike the canary in the coal mine.

See, it’s the wide and rapid temperature swings that affect the health of the plants -- and of course wildlife, including insects and birds and reptiles and…
When folks say, “Geez - I remember it was really cold/a lot colder when I was a kid - so what’s all the fuss?”  They’re missing the point.
The difference or issue is used to be the gradual, predictable ramping up to the cold and the sustained, predictable duration.  
When it comes to the plants - is they can take the cold. They can and in some instances need the cold - and enduring cold.  
The freeze eliminates pests including insects, pathogens, even mosquitoes.

Woody Perennials, shrubs, and trees go dormant.  According to  North Carolina State University Cooperative Extension (NCSU), “As temperatures drop, growth slows and many plants begin winter acclimation.  Cool temperatures and shorter days initiate the first phase of hardening, allowing plants to withstand a frost but not a hard freeze.”

Accordingly, “To become fully acclimated so they can tolerate the cold associated with their hardiness zone, nursery crops require exposure to temperatures between 32°F and 40°F followed by temperatures slightly below freezing.
After plants become fully hardened, prolonged periods of warm weather can cause them to lose some degree of hardiness even if all other factors are favorable.”
And that was the first punch.  The hard freeze came so fast and furious, the plants normal rhythms were disrupted.
Then, there was a late frost in the spring - just as the woody perennials “sap”  was starting flow.  Essentially, it was like blood freezing in the veins.  
I waited until the last possible moment and then cut the woody stems.  
Normally, one does not prune or cut the woody stems of the hydrangea macrophylla because they bloom on old wood.  However, last spring’s circumstances were extraordinary.  So the cuts/pruning was made.  It was the sacrifice that was needed.  And the hydrangea leaves came back full and green.   No blossoms, of course, but the plants came back healthy.  Gardening is a hopeful pursuit.

The cherry laurels surrounding our water garden survived the winter with elegance and grace - I wrote about them on Garden Glamour Winter Garden Splendor last year, noting they looked for all the world like ballerinas in repose after one heavy snow storm. Yet they bounced back with equal amounts of grace and strength.  

The late spring frost however was their undoing.  

Then, a kind of pathogen seemed to settle in.  After I determined the shrubs needed to have the compromised leaves removed, we - my husband and mother and me - raced to implement this course of action.  The curious result - if you can call it that - is that the meticulous removal of the leaves on the cherry laurels on one half of the water garden rebounded with dark green color and rich, robust foliage.  The other half? Not so much.
Why? You will ask, as a logical garden question.  The crazy, true answer is that were not meticulous enough to remove all of the compromised foliage -- it was getting dark that late spring day, it was still rather cold, it was a Sunday, and my husband and mother were getting tired and cold.  Me too.  Plus, I wasn’t all that positive that my solution strategy would work - so we had to call it quitting time.  
As you can readily see, the strategy worked on those cherry laurels where we remove the compromised leaves.   I fretted all summer that I didn’t stay out in the dark to complete the work on the other shrubs.  Oh, we took away a lot of their leaves but not the ruthless, surgical work we did on the other half of the border…  The contrast is striking. 
Meticulous leaf removal resulted in rich, robust shrubs

The not-so-primped shrubs were thin. Leaves didn't fully rebound all season

Researching data for this article, I see that my instincts were right:                                                                                                  

Indirect Damage
The experts indicated the plants may not be killed outright but can be stressed to the point that it is predisposed to infection or infestation from pests that eventually kill it. In fact, indirect effects of cold may occur more commonly than direct kills and manifest themselves as cankers, collar rots, and dieback because of attack by fungal and bacterial parasites. Sometimes disease damage is the only outward sign of freezing damage.
This is according to MSU Extension  
Here, writer Lee Schmelzer cites “Winter Damage” as a broad term that refers to damage in fall (!), winter, and early spring (! – my exclamation point to note his “winter” is every season except summer!)
He says fundamentally nearly all winter damage is desiccation -- freezing cellular water or indirectly by freezing soil water making it unavailable for uptake. I refer to this as “sap-stop. “

What the wild swings in temperature do is to wreak the kind of havoc we witnessed last year.
My experienced nurseryman told me that the plants suffered because of a double punch.  
The first, early frost occurred as a surprise.  The nurseries tried watering them to get the ice to protect/heat the plants but the storm came too fast without much warning - thereby rendering most of their efforts unsuccessful.  The plants didn’t die - they just rather seized up - as the “sap” was still flowing in these woody perennials’ stems.
The second tragedy occurred with a late spring frost. Just as the cellular water was flowing – and we gardeners could see the buds on the woody stems – the frost caused the “sap-stop.”  We know how that turned out in the end.  No blooms last summer.
Schmelzer explains cold kills by denaturing proteins: “Plant proteins, among them enzymes, are temperature sensitive and must remain intact and in the presence of liquid water to remain functional. Cold inactivates proteins by making liquid water unavailable for their function.”
Want to help plan your garden with an eye to your zone’s Frost/Freeze dates?  The Farmer's Almanac does it for you. (It’s official name is the “Old” Farmer’s Almanac but I’m just thinking that Old and Farmer is sadly redundant.  We need young farmers and not just in urban farming.  
We need to reclaim the “corporate farms.”  But that’s another story for another day.
The other winter issues you’ll need to monitor are Frost Burn, Wind Burn, as well as Desiccation.

A few years ago when the winter snow storms started back with a vengeance, I wrapped our arborvitaes in sheets after I swept the heavy snow off of them in order to prevent the snow from getting inside and weighting them down.  It worked.
And I probably should apologize to the neighbors for making the garden look a little like a laundry room. Ha. Plus, I used panty hose to help shake the snow off. Never a dull moment in the world of gardens.
Read here on Garden Glamour: SOS Save Our Shrubs It’s a post I did some years ago about winter storm care for shrubs and trees.  Lots of good information and references.

Let me know how your garden fared the storm.  And be sure to enjoy the winter garden.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Gardening Ideas on a Budget

Charming Edible Garden: Photo courtesy Chris Bowers & Sons

In an ideal world, we’d all be given endless amounts of cash to create our dream gardens that feature swimming pools, huge decking areas and hidden alcoves for relaxation. Unfortunately for us, it’s not an ideal world that we live in, and most of us have to work hard to both create and maintain an outdoor space that we are proud of and enjoy spending time in.

Planting in our home "farmette" - Orchard just beyond
Harvesting & deadheading are joyful pursuits in our home farm-ette

What many people don’t know, however, is that there are plenty of gardening ideas that are ideally suited to those who would like to create a prosperous garden without having to cause too much damage to their bank balance. The following are some gardening ideas for those of you who may be budget-conscious.

1.           Grow Your Own Vegetables

Homegrown potatoes  Photo courtesy of Chris Bowers & Sons

Ok, so this may not have been the first thought that came into your mind when you thought of budget-friendly gardening tips. Growing your own vegetables will take a little cash and time investment from you in the beginning, but the benefits that are awarded will far outweigh these initial investments. Seeing the growth of fresh vegetables in any garden, regardless of its size, is a welcome sight by all. Once you have your vegetable garden in full operation, you’ll begin to notice less time spent in the produce aisle when you visit the supermarket and more money in your wallet once you finish at the checkout.

2.           Plant A Fruit Tree

Apple tree fruits: Photo Courtesy of Chris Bowers & Sons 

Nothing looks quite as attractive in a garden than a blooming and colorful fruit tree. 

I certainly welcome and embrace this garden suggestion.  In the last two years, I created a bit more Garden Glamour in our home garden by designing and planting a modest "orchard."  
I selected a total of four, dwarf fruit trees, arranged them in two rows cut out from the lawn.  
The garden design will allow for several key benefits: ultimately we'll be able to walk between the trees'  shady rows (or maybe I'll put a garden bench there)  -- either way, it will be a thrilling, sensual pleasure with the sweet-smelling flowers and the fruit.  The fruit trees will also attract pollinators -- good for our farmette located next to the orchard, and good for the environment.  
And finally, we need to grow our own fruit trees if we are ever to think about being truly sustainable.  At one time it would have been unthinkable for any home garden not have fruit trees.  I like that kind of thinking.

Not only do fruit trees look lovely, they can also save you a considerable amount of money when it comes to providing delicious fruit for your family to eat. 
There are plenty of options out there to choose from but blackberry bushes are a great option in particular, as they are inexpensive to buy and extremely easy to plant and grow. Viruses can be a problem so always ensure to purchase your seeds/trees from a reputable nursery such as chrisbowers.co.uk or another highly rated nursery.

We have blueberry bushes in our front garden.  They are a beautiful red color in the winter and in-season, offer sweet, delicious taste to meals.  
Both fruit trees and edible bushes also provide no small amount of homegrown joy -- guests are fascinated by the opportunity to enjoy fresh blueberries, cherries, and apples, picked right from your own "garden of Eden." 

3.  Used Recycled Products

Take a look in your garden shed – is it filled with old wooden barrels, containers, wood and metal scraps or wicker baskets? 
If so, you’re in luck as these are all items that can be used in a creative way to beautifully decorate your garden. 
For example, old wicker baskets can be used to plant some budding flowers while the timeworn wooden barrels can be remodelled and used as storage containers or decorative items. 
Once you begin to get creative, you’ll be surprised at what you can do with items that you have laying about the house in cupboards and sheds.

I love the look of the garden shed!  Just last month we had to get a new garden shed.  For now, we painted it the same color as the house. In the spring, we'll look to create some garden glamour, using the garden shed here as an inspiration  
Like a country cottage, it will charm any garden-lover to spending more time just enjoying the garden because it's both so pretty to look at-- the climbing rose and vines add just the right touch -- and because you'll be so organized - you can afford to sit and enjoy the "fruits" of your labor.

Sweet garden shed: Photo courtesy of Chris Bowers & Sons

As with most home renovation projects, there are some simple ways that you can save a lot of money when gardening – three of which have been outlined above. 

Planning, being creative, recycling and putting in the time and effort is basically what is required if you want to create a garden that you’re proud of and actually want to spend time in. 

And the beauty of it is that with the right mind-set and a little hard work, you don’t need to spend an absolute fortune on your garden-remodelling project.

Start planning now for this season's gardens.  Look at those seed catalogs and make up the fruit tree nursery list. Check out Chris Bowers -- they're on Facebook, too.   
Spring is around the corner. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

All That Glitters: Glamorous Winter Beauty

Garden Glamour is dazzling wrapped in winter's cold.

The official notice this week was that 2014 was the hottest year on record according to the NOAA's National Climatic Data Center and NASA.

So one may be forgiven for some cold-head scratching.  See, it's not "global warming"-- as in "OK, I don't care if things heat up a bit.  After all, we had a 'Polar Vortex' in 2014."
It's all about climate change.  It's the extreme swings in temperature -- as just one element -- that is wreaking havoc on the plant world and the natural ecosystems.
Garden designers and garden lovers saw the damage early and late frosts saw first-hand the damage to their hydrangeas and cherry laurels, along with some other woody perennials.

Can we make an "pinkie-promise" to love our winter season?
It's so beautiful.  From Shadow Art to tree silhouettes against the winter sky to happy birds to pussy-willow-like jackets on the Star Magnolias that capture the sun and moonlight to dazzling lights -- both nature's and our own twinkling spectacle.

Enjoy and embrace the beauty of the season - every day.
Here are a few images of my glamorous garden winter.  Images reflect some garden clients' holiday garden decor, our home, the glittering spectacle of our world in Gotham and the quiet bliss of remembering our loved ones who now shine like the stars …
Perhaps this is why we recreate the sparkling sky in our holiday glittering light designs and why winter lights shine so bright… We are closer to our to heaven...

We decorate with food and cuttings from our garden
This is my beloved Father's grave.
I have sometimes wondered why more Americans - and especially contemporary Americans - don't visit the graves of their family and loved ones. It's surely a sign of respect.  At the same time, I often hear this: "They are not there."  I understand this. But for me, the grave is a portal - the place we humans can still "touch" our beloved.  As far as visiting cemeteries and their impact on families and the world of horticulture, you can read my Garden Glamour blog about GreenWood Cemetery.    For now, I'm thinking I will design some pretty, glamorous, and appropriate grave "Celebrations" vs. grave "blankets" that offer no honor or beauty.  

Our neighbor's sparkling holiday lights! 

We decorate with food:  Here Bill & I are dehydrating fresh organs - what a luxury - to make delicious indoor garlands for winter bliss

A pretty, delicious kitchen island treat made from oranges & apples. Snack on this! 

Garden Clients shimmery containers with a "hug" of nandina-lined walk that turns red in time for Holidays

Garden Client Twinkling Lights

First-year Winter Blooming White Camellias!

Glittering, Glistening, Crystal -- Table Jewelry!

Ok - this isn't glittering - but I'm still seeing "Stars" over Edible Magazine naming my book, The Hamptons & Long Island Homegrown Cookbook, #1!

And when you need that resplendant plant boost and exhilarating horticultural rush of plant oxygen, visit the botanical gardens.  The conservatories and outdoor garden displays are transporting.

Monday, December 29, 2014

Holiday Punch Recipe from Top Chef Gail Simmons showcases Pure Leaf Real Brewed Tea

Want to “punch up” the Holiday party? 
An easy-to-make, elegant recipe from author and host of Top Chef Just Desserts and judge on Top Chef, Gail Simmons and Pure Leaf Real Brewed Tea - is the inspiration for a pretty -- and tasty holiday hostess punch that is sure to welcome guests as an entertaining treat and a “get the seasonal parties started” focal point.  A party-central “sparkler.”

An special food and drink event was held at The New York Botanical Garden’s Lillian and Amy Goldman Stone Mill, nestled along the banks of the Bronx River, in the Garden, hosted by Pure Leaf Tea featured cook and Food & Wine contributor/director, Simmons, and home entertainment blogger, Camille Styles. (Yes that is her tailor-made-for-her-profession moniker!) and author of her own, self-styled book, Camille Styles Entertaining Inspired Gatherings and Effortless Style that is a wonderful holiday hostess gift, by the way, filled with seasonal food and drink recipes, color photos, and tips.  

The event at NYBG was designed to both introduce Pure Leaf Tea to the uninitiated, and new ways to use the fresh-brewed tea, especially in holiday recipes. 
I will unabashedly confess to not being familiar with the product and hopefully forgiven for being a bit skeptical about its lack of homegrown gravitas.  
But here’s the thing.  The world of food and drink is an enduring, never-ending adventure that opens a door to learning about new tastes and creating recipes. 
So lo and behold, Pure Leaf is well, just that.  It’s made from pure tea. Go figure…  (The sugar count clocks in at 18 grams per serving/42 grams per 18.5 ounces - that is one full bottle/2.5 servings, as noted on the label, so be mindful.  Tip: four grams of sugar equals 1 teaspoon of sugar). So using the tea in a punch is an effective and tasty way to use the Pure Tea.

The fresh brewed, Pure Leaf tea is made with tea leaves picked or harvested at their peak, then hand-selected by Pure Leaf Master Tea Blenders from plantations in India, Africa and South America to be used in the Love the Leaves collection of flavors, including lemon, raspberry, peach, and sweet tea.
More about the event and a review of Gail Simmons’ marvelous cookbook and memoir, Talking with My Mouth Full: My Life as a Professional Eater – which will make a fabulous holiday gift, is in the Garden Glamour story/editorial queue.

Here, in time for party planning is Gail Simmons’ recipe for Pure Leaf Lemon-Ginger Tea Pomegranate Sparkler.
The Pure Leaf Tea event presented various tasting stations.   Sampling the tea in a variety of prepared libations proved to be a refreshing and satisfying treat that prompted, “More, please.”  In addition, a DIY/craft and cooking presentation by both Styles and Simmons, after welcoming remarks from Eric Whitehouse, Marketing Director, Pure Leaf Tea, PepsiCo.  

Whitehouse and his team are doing something right: Pure Leaf sales are up 40 per cent this year.  
“We have a pure passion for real tea – we brew it like you would at home.  Because it is,” he smiled.
Whitehouse explained, “We find people who embody our brand” and that led them to Gail Simmons and eventually to Camille Styles.  He said the brand is happy to partner with them.  “It’s a powerful thing,” he noted, by way of explaining the link to Pure Leaf. 

Simmons followed Styles, demonstrating how to make the Pure Leaf Lemon-Ginger Tea Pomegranate Sparkler.  
Later, in a follow up blog post, Styles showcased her own twist on the Camille Styles Lemon, Ginger & Pomegranate Sparkler

It was fascinating to watch Simmons in-person after enjoying her on the popular, "Top Chef" TV show. 
Simmons is down to earth, friendly, and authentic.  She readily explained in a follow-up interview that because she doesn't have a restaurant: “I am not a chef.” 
Simmons exudes that “best-friend/girlfriend” huggable personality that makes you want to embrace her and her cooking style. 
Demonstrating that friendly, chatty, BFF -- and at the same time, unmistakable, knowledgeable authority -- Simmons showed the guests how to create a few recipes: Shaved Fall Vegetable Salad with Pure Leaf Tea Pickled Radishes.  Pickling the radishes was fun, too.  

Simmons launched her Sparkler presentation by demonstrating how to open a pomegranate to extract and -- essentially wash out the seeds --  a key ingredient in her Pure Leaf recipe.  It is also a good-to-know food prep technique for other recipes. 
Thank you for the prep tip, Gail.  

Then, she showed how to cut the pomegranate in quarters and submerge the fruit in a bowl of cold water, “tap” the pomegranate and to easily wash out the seeds as they fall to the bottom of the bowl.  Who knew?  
Then she cut fresh ginger. And finally she showed how to blend these fresh ingredients with Pure Leaf Tea.

I wanted to recreate the recipe, making the Pure Leaf Tea Ginger and Pomegranate Sparkler the focus of a welcome, sparkly tablescape for holiday guests. 
First up, was to secure some holiday fashions to honor this Pure Leaf Sparkler

A shopping foray in NYC’s floral markets unearthed red-themed sparkly decorations and décor to complement the red pomegranate in the Pure Leaf recipe.   The tablescape décor included snow, sleigh bells, and “cranberries” from Williams Sonoma, and the aforementioned floral district sparkly scores.

Punch it Up!
Over the years I have used punch recipes and seasonal ice designs for almost every occasion: from bridal showers to garden parties and Christmas/Winter Holidays.  

My niece, Lauren, enjoys her beautiful, rose-bud bridal punch

I always thought a glamourous, signature party punch drink avoids mixing and fixing drinks and allows the hostess to enjoy the party.
Then, I saw a photo essay in the December issue of House Beautiful touting the very idea of creating an artful, floating ice block in a punch.   In a "back to the future"  kind of moment, I was inspired to make and share my punch magic that I've used for lots of party glamour.

The Rose Buds/Blossoms are frozen in bundt mold, melt to reveal floating floral design

Credit the idea of punch to the 17th century when sailors and explorers brought it back from, most likely, the Hindus.  The Hindu word punch means five.  
A traditional punch is a mix of five components: sweet, sour, water, spice and alcohol.  

Pure Leaf made combining these five elements easy and delicious.
Punch is a preferred welcome drink because it can be cold, hot, and pretty. With a welcome “Hostess Punch,” guests can get right into the party spirit.  
There isn’t that awkward moment when hosts ask, “What can I get you to drink?” and the guest looks around to see what others may be imbibing.  Cocktail? Wine?  

In every season, punch is a friendly jump-start to the party. With liquor or without.  

But why not punch up the sparkle in the holiday recipe by adding some craft spirits? 
We provided this season’s gin in a Waterford creamer pitcher next to the punch bowl so guests can add accordingly.  Perhaps all that crystal created a “white” mood. 

Simmons recommends bourbon, too, if one is to add a spirit to her Sparkler recipe.  
Small punch glasses keep the guests coming back for more and at the same time, help foster that party mixing and mingling.  Perfect party style.
I prefer cold punches, so the Simmons' Pure Leaf recipe was like discovering a long-lost relative on the family tree.   
The really glamorous part of any cold punch is the opportunity to chill it out with a floating ice block inside the punch bowl.  The frozen ring can be thought of as an added accessory adorning the delicious punch: think baby roses, nasturtiums, or herbs, for example, to make the punch special to a season or occasion.   Plus the block of ice keeps the punch from diluting.

How to make the ice ring
Using distilled water, freeze half of the mold – one can use a bundt pan, as I doe most often, or use a milk carton or one cut in half --  or any freezable container, or any freezable flat plate or pan.  

When the half is frozen, lay in the flowers or herbs and then fill the container the rest of the way full with the distilled water.  When all is frozen and ready to serve, place the ring in the center of the punch bowl.   
If a punch bowl is not part of one’s entertaining collective, use any pretty bowl to hold the punch.  
The plant-infused ice also makes for a lovely ring of happy beauty as the ice begins to melt.

Overall, there is no denying it is a festive, pretty look for a welcome entrance, dining table or island.  
The Pure Leaf Gail Simmons recipe was easy and fun to make.  I secured the Pure Leaf Tea in two different blends: Peach and Sweet Tea and used both.  Loving fresh ginger, I  added a tablespoon more than the recipe called for took the spicy flavor up a notch.

For the Pure Leaf Ginger Sparkler ice ring, I used fresh-from-the-garden rosemary (yes, it’s still great this time of year even in zone 6 and 7), along with market-bought pomegranate seeds. 

Pure Leaf Lemon-Ginger Tea Pomegranate Sparkler
By Gail Simmons
Serves 2
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, thinly sliced
1 cup Pure Leaf Lemon Iced Tea
1/2 cup pomegranate juice
Cold club soda
2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds, for garnish
2 cinnamon sticks, for garnish

In a saucepan, combine the ginger and Pure Leaf Lemon Iced Tea and bring to a simmer. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside to steep, about 10 minutes. Allow to cool in an airtight container in the fridge.

Fill two highball glasses with ice. Pour 1/2 cup ginger-infused tea, then 1/4 cup pomegranate juice into each glass. Top each with club soda, garnish with a tablespoon of pomegranate seeds and a cinnamon stick to stir.
For alcoholic version, add 2 ounces gin or bourbon before adding tea.
Visit Pure Leaf Website, and on Facebook

Happy, “punched-up” holidays.  Be sure to add some sparkle to the holidays. Cheers.

Pure Leaf Tea Punch pretty in day … 

or night…