Bring the Outdoors ‘In’ for Festive Holiday Decor

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Thinking about a more natural look for your Christmas decorating, head outside!

Nature is instinctively beautiful and offers all we need to decorate for the holidays from gorgeous evergreens to bright berries. Welcoming the fresh, crisp beauty of the outdoors will naturally make your home feel warm and inviting.

First step out into your yard and see what shapes, colors and textures might add a festive cheer to your decorating.   Grab your pruners, clip evergreens of all kinds from your yard and tuck them around the house.  When taking a walk, look around and start gathering inspiration.    Forage some evergreen branches, magnolia leaves, clusters of berries, seed pods, driftwood, pinecones, dried ornamental grass plumes, branches, twigs perhaps painted, dried hydrangea.  Ask your Christmas tree farm or seller for the cut off branches.

There are so many opportunities to incorporate nature into your home for the holidays.  From your table center pieces, wreathes, mantle, vases, or outdoor planters, natural holiday décor helps you think beyond the traditional, commercial red and green.

Holiday Container

Look below to see how nature provides us with so many materials that will help you bring the outdoors in.


Conifers are needle-leaf evergreens and make perfect wreaths, swags, vases and outdoor planters.  Cut from well-established trees and shrubs.  Some easy to find conifers are Pine, Fir, Spruce, Hemlock, Arborvitae, Cedar and Juniper.

Broad-Leaf Evergreens

Don’t rule these types of evergreens since they add some different texture and color to arrangements.  Some examples would be Aucuba, Euonymus, Holly, Magnolia.

Miscellaneous materials all gathered from outdoors.
Photo: Harmony Hill Nursery


Branches give color, depth, height and texture to your decorating. Some of our favorites are:  Red and Yellow Twig Dogwoods which have beautiful gold and dark and light red hues and look fantastic in arrangements and when you group them together.

Any branches that look beautiful in the garden would look lovely in holiday decorating, but a few are extra special like Curly Willow and Harry Lauder Walking Stick have a twisted and curled branch structure which gives your decoration a touch of personality.

Miscellaneous Elements

Christmas décor from nature is not limited just to evergreens.  Seed heads, herbs, branches, pinecones, acorns, plumes from ornamental grasses, and Lotus Seed Pods, all add interest to arrangements.   Hedge apples from an Osage-Orange tree, crabapple branches add pops of color.

Ornamental grass plumes

Branches with Colorful Berries

Winterberry , Holly, and Beautyberry add a colorful addition to wreathes, and planters.

How Long Will Greens Last?

If your greenery is fresh, it can last 2+ weeks inside the house, and much longer outdoors.  Your outdoor planters will last all through the cold, dreary months and set a festive mood for your entryway, deck or patio.

Looking to nature for your inspiration has no hard and fast rules.  Just trust your creativity and let the colors and texture of nature welcome family and friends this year.  And if are too busy to gather materials for your outdoor planters, Whitehouse Landscaping offers custom designs.  Click here to request your Holiday Container Garden today.