Native Plants as Holiday Decor

Decorating with fresh greenery is one of the oldest winter holiday traditions.

Gathering Greenery

Please be responsible when gathering greenery. Make sure you are not trespassing on private property or violating state plant-protection laws.

With a little planning your own landscape can be a great place to look for holiday greenery. When gathering live greenery from your shrubs and trees, remember that you are actually pruning the plants. Consider carefully which branches to cut and which ones to leave. Distribute the cuts evenly around the plant in order to preserve its natural form.

Grow Native Nursery

Give the nursery staff a call for information about our current inventory of plants to add to your landscape.

Grow Native Nursery Claremont: (909) 625-8767 ext. 404
Grow Native Nursery in the Veterans Garden: (424) 234-0481

Pruning Guidance

Feel free to ask nursery staff about pruning guidelines. In general, do not prune off more than 25% of a tree's foliage within one year. 

Safety Considerations

Dried evergreens can become flammable when in contact with a heat source such as a candle flame. Keep fresh greenery away from all heat sources.

Make sure that any wreaths, roping and garlands that you bring indoors are as fresh as possible. Check needles by bending them. They should be flexible and not break. Avoid greenery that are shedding or that have brown, dry tips. Before bringing the greenery inside, soak them in water overnight to rehydrate them. You may also spritz your arrangements with water from a spray bottle, especially if the humidity is low inside your home.

Try to keep plants out of the reach of children and curious pets.

Below are some suggested varieties to use in holiday decorating.  

Trees  (* indicates species that may require supplemental irrigation)

Western Cypress (Cupressus arizonica, aka Hesperocyparis
Bigcone Douglas-Fir (Pseudotsuga macrocarpa)  
Bristlecone Fir (Abies bracteata)*
California Juniper (Juniperus californica)  
Coulter Pine (Pinus coulteri)
Grand Fir (Abies grandis)* 
Ghost Pine (Pinus sabiniana)
Incense Cedar (Calocedrus decurrens)*  
Knobcone Pine (Pinus attenuata)* 
Western Juniper (Juniperus occidentalis)
Parry Pinyon Pine (Pinus quadrifolia)
Redwood (Sequoia sempervirens)
Santa Cruz Cypress (Hesperocyparis abramsiana)
Sierra Juniper (Juniperus grandis)* 
Singleleaf Pinyon Pine (Pinus monophylla)
Torrey Pine (Pinus torreyana)
Utah Juniper (Juniperus osteosperma)
Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata)* 
White Fir (Abies concolor)* 


Decorative berries, foliage, floral displays

Berberis spp.
Lemonade Berry (Rhus integrifolia
Pacific Madrone (Arbutus menziesii)
Sugar Bush (Rhus ovata)
Toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolia)

Succulent wreaths

Dudleya ssp.
Stonecrop (Sedum ssp.)