Look how pretty it is can be to shop at Christmas time. Apart from being a nice (and convenient) place to shop, Reston Town Center always has beautiful Christmas decorations, the ice skating rink is fun to watch, and I love to stop by this flower shop and see what they have outside. It was especially pretty with Christmas flowers and greens the other day and they must be used to me taking pictures outside their shop.
Just look at these bunches of cut amaryllis...uh-mazing.
Pretty bunches of hydrangeas...
And all around the streets and the stores were these planters, with this red holly and the chartreusey false cypress. I have seen these hollies a lot this year, some of the nurseries are showcasing it--it's called Winterberry. I don't remember it in years past, but it's a deciduous holly that loses its leaves and just the berries remain in the winter. Adrian Higgins even wrote an article about it recently in The Post, about a variety called 'Sparkleberry' (isn't that a great name?) which is a cross between our native winterberry and the japanese version. Most grow pretty tall, to about 6 feet, but these in the planters must be a dwarf variety. Whatever, I think they would be an amazing addition to the winter garden, in front of some other evergreens, or as a specimen, and I may just have to get a Sparkleberry for my own winter garden.