Image by Karen Smith

Silver bells, silver bells, it’s Christmas time! The tune lingers in the air, the lights have been hung and now it’s time to decorate inside. A chilly wind swirls through the trees outside but the house is warm and cozy with a fire burning in the fireplace. The mantel piece is a perfect place to begin adding greenery.

Any landscape is filled with beautiful evergreens you can use for your holiday decorations and incorporating Oregon Grape, sarcococca, ivy and laurels along with tree branches is a nice touch. Before you start lay everything you have out on the table, or on a tarp outside to consider what else you need to incorporate for a full display.

Image by Karen Smith

Of course, décor wouldn’t be complete without a mistletoe or wreath. Often times Christmas tree farms or vendors have leftover evergreen tree boughs of Nordmann’s, Nobles, Douglas, and Grands to make the perfect garland with highlights of red berries from holly and barberry. Fashion a cheerful centerpiece with blooming potted plants. Stores regularly carry amaryllis, poinsettia, Narcissus (Paperwhites) and Cyclamens in bloom early for the holiday season. Houseplants can be included easily, especially Fittonia verschaffeltii (Fittonia nerve plant) with the colors of Christmas all year long. You can never go wrong with the addition of some ferns for texture like Nephrolepis exaltata (Boston Fern) or Davallia fejeensis (Rabbit’s foot fern).

Image by Karen Smith

Additionally, to complement your coffee table there are many options for container trees. Some popular ideas are Junipers, Lemon Cypress or Drawf Alberta Spruce. However, there are many more to choose from, so check out our Corner Store Nursery and our Prairie Road, Eugene location. Just remember to move it outside to your front steps, patio, or balcony after about a week. Scatter some Douglas Fir, Western Red Cedar, Incense Cedar or Ponderosa Pine cones along the base with enhanced painted white tips.

Image by Karen Smith

A few manmade materials are great for tying things together and adding color accents. Create a focal point by filling a tall galvanized bucket with branches to offer a splash of color. A few good choices are Redtwig dogwood, Willow, Cherry, Aspen or Birch branches. You can fill the bottom with stones or marbles to help stabilize them and place the containers on wooden tree rounds. Lastly, create a nice harmony with the addition of a few candles (I typically use white).

Written by Karen Smith, Lane Forest Products Plant Specialist