Spring, the vernal equinox officially arrives tomorrow at 12:57 p.m.

Looking around Aiken the past week and a half, it appears spring is already here. The cherry trees have bloomed, and the Bradford pears are now popping out with fluffy white flowers on their branches and the dogwoods and redbuds are about to flower.

As a decorator, the question on my mind is how can I bring the freshness of spring inside my home?

It occurs to me that the easiest way to accomplish this goal is with fresh flowers and green plants. Flowers and greenery bring positive energy and delightful colors to our interior spaces.

There are clusters of daffodils popping up in everyone's garden all over town. Why not clip some of those brightly colored flowers and bring them inside to add a pop of color to any room/rooms of your choosing?

If you do not have any in your garden, this becomes your plan for next year – note to self “plant daffodils this fall.” You will be thrilled you did when their flashy yellow flowers start popping up all over your yard.

Some of you may have forsythia bushes in your yard. A great way to add height as well as sunshine to your interior is with clipped forsythia branches. You have the opportunity to clip the branches as long as you choose, and the tiny yellow flowers that pop out of the woody stems will add rays of sunshine to any room.

Since it has been so cool for so long this year, there are multitudes of camellias still in bloom. The flowers come in so many shades from white, to pink, to exotic reds.

Clip some camellia blossoms and place groupings of single flowers or many flowers in one vase and spread them throughout your home. This will bring life and light back inside after this longer and colder winter we have all shared.

Tulips are available in many stores either in pre-planted pots or in glass vases. Unfortunately tulips do not perform well as re-bloomers in gardens here in Aiken, but, you can purchase them from local markets and display the vibrant color in any space you choose.

Local garden centers are now stocked with pots of herbs. Why not purchase a few pots of curly parsley to add the freshness of green to your kitchen window or your counter?

In mid-April you can plant the herbs outside and wait for the colorful caterpillars of black swallowtail butterflies to show up on your plants. This way you add texture to your garden, as well as nourishment for you and the butterflies. Hopefully, they will stay and take up of residence in your garden.

A ruffled birdsnest fern is an ideal plant. The fronds of this fern are thick and lush and a beautiful green.

You can trim several fronds and insert them in a clear glass vase, or use the potted fern as a centerpiece for your table.

Either way, the lush vegetation of this fern will certainly make you feel like spring is present inside your home and sitting in the center of your dining table.

Happy Spring!

Sharon Preston is the owner of Decorate in Aiken. Sharon is certified in interior decorating and has been decorating residential and commercial spaces for 11 years. Email her at prestonss@aol.com.