Crafts, indoor greenery and backyard heat

Get into House Plants
If going outdoors is out of your comfort zone, why not bring the outdoors in? “Most of us get a little bit disconnected from nature on a daily basis,” says Brian Kellett, who owns Stump in German and Italian villages with his wife, Emily. “Owning and caring for plants inside your house really does connect you with nature in a very authentic and meaningful way.” Houseplants also can bring an aesthetic edge to your space that grows and changes in a way that furniture and artwork can’t, Emily notes.

For newbies, the Kelletts recommend a sansevieria, or snake plant, which is available in dozens of varieties. “They are the most resilient, and they don’t mind if you go out of town for a month or two and forget about them,” Emily says. “They can tolerate pretty low light … as long as you have a window in your room, you can put it anywhere.” And if you run into trouble, you can email a photo of your plant to help@stumpplants.com for advice.

Ultimately, the hobby should be relaxing and fun, even for beginners. “You can’t feel too bad if a plant dies. It happens occasionally, and it’s part of the learning process,” Emily says. “Plant care is really about trial and error, and figuring out which plants are best for your lifestyle and your space.” —Emma Frankart Henterly

Columbus Fall Fun How to make the best of an autumn unlike any before.

Make a Modern Wreath
As the pandemic wages on, a good way to avoid the doldrums is to get crafty. Let your creative juices flow and start experimenting with new ways to use pine cones, pumpkins, acorns and candles to decorate your home this fall. Certainly, you can discover some fun ideas online (a recent internet search turned up a ghost paper lantern, mason jar luminaries and toilet paper pumpkins, for instance). But for those who want to stick to the classic fall wreath, turn to Studio 614, which is offering a socially distanced, wreath-making workshop at its BYOB studio in the University District in late September and October.

During the 90-minute class, students will learn how to make the wreath pictured above. Studio 614 owner Meg Pando describes the minimalist decoration (made out of a gold hoop, burlap and artificial greenery and leaves) as a more modern type of wreath. “I think that uniqueness is what people really like,” she says. —Dave Ghose

Light Your (Backyard) Fire
The backyard has become, by default, the vacation destination for far too many people during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, fire pits are lighting up more and more Columbus-area yards, decks and patios. “Our phone is ringing off the hook,” says Nick Berger, a designer at Hidden Creek Landscaping.

The Hilliard company makes custom fire pits that range from $3,000 all the way up to $7,000. Then again, you can buy a 35-inch Garden Treasure fire pit at Lowe’s for $79. Here are some of the trends in the world of fire pits.

Gas: “This is super popular,” Berger says. “It’s easy on and off and burns clean.”

Lights: Landscape lighting is becoming more popular, and strings of lights can accentuate the lines of a beautiful fire pit.

Indoor/outdoor: Bringing the indoor comforts to the backyard is a growing trend, which means many fire pit “complexes” include a TV and mini kitchen, Berger says. —Steve Wartenberg

PHOTO CREDIT: Tim Johnson