When the opportunity to make my own Christmas wreath came, I jumped at the chance.

I love arts and crafts but rarely get the chance to do them in my day job as a reporter, so when Borde Hill invited me to create my own I was so excited.

The old stable building at the gardens, near Haywards Heath, oozed festive atmosphere with Christmas-scented candles burning, hot spiced apple drinks and the shrubbery to make our wreaths.

We had two hours to make our wreaths – which sounds like a lot of time but it flew by.

Our class was led by Julia Bigham, senior gardener at Borde Hill, who is the fount of all gardening knowledge.

First, she taught us how to add a moss base to our 14-inch wire frame using string.

The Argus: The moss baseThe moss base (Image: The Argus)

We then created bundles of foliage, all sustainably sourced from off-cuts from the gardens, to turn the wreath from a mossy mess into a beautiful ornament.

I used pine and eucalyptus, both grown at the gardens, to add a variety of textures.

The Argus: The foliageThe foliage (Image: The Argus)

Finally, we decorated the foliage. There was so much to choose from – berries, seedheads, feathers, pine cones, dried fruits, ribbons and much more.

I decided to go for a "less is more" approach and chose oranges, pine cones and berries to decorate my wreath in traditional Christmas colours – and to go with my red front door.

Besides some small bits of wire and the frame, all the elements are biodegradable, and you can reuse the frame year after year.

While we got stuck in, Julia taught us how to maintain our wreaths so they stay looking fresh until Christmas.

She recommended leaving the wreath out on damp grass for a few hours once a week, so the moss base can absorb moisture to keep the foliage green and vibrant.

The Argus: Adding the finishing touchesAdding the finishing touches (Image: The Argus)

It was one of those tasks where you could get really immersed and use your hands so it felt really relaxing and like a proper break.

The classes are £49 per person and drinks, snacks and all the materials – except secateurs and gloves – are provided.

Tickets are limited, but there are all sorts of festive events on at Borde Hill this Christmas, including their Christmas table decoration workshop for the adults and the family trail which includes the chance to write a letter to Santa and see his sleigh.

The family trail takes place from 10am to 3.30pm on December 2, 3, 9, 10 and 16-19.

The table decorations workshop is in the morning on December 13.