Decorating the house with fresh greenery is one of the oldest winter holiday traditions. Evergreens have been a part of winter festivals since ancient times. Evergreens are used to represent everlasting life and hope for the return of spring.
Decorated trees were used in winter celebrations long before the advent of Christianity. Plants and trees that remained green all year had a special significance for people who lived in cold-winter climates.
It is believed that the use of an evergreen tree as part of a Christian Christmas started some 400 years ago in Germany and eventually spread across Europe and to America.
Types of Greenery
- Leyland Cypress
- Japanese Cedar (Cryptomeria japonica)
Safety for Children & Pets
Keeping Greenery Fresh
- Use clean, sharp cutters to cut branches and immediately put cut ends into water until ready to use.
- Crush the ends of woody stems to allow the cutting to take in more water.
- Keep greenery out of sunlight.
- Immerse greenery in water overnight before arranging. This allows the cuttings to absorb the maximum amount of moisture.
- Allow the foliage to dry and then spray it with an anti-transpirant, such as Wilt-pruf, to help seal in moisture. Note: Do not use antitranspirants on juniper berries, cedar or blue spruce. The product can damage the wax coating that gives these plants their distinctive color.
- Keep completed wreaths, garlands and arrangements in a cool location until use.
- Display fresh greenery and fruits out of the sun and away from heat.
- Plan to replace greenery and fruits throughout the holiday season if they become less than fresh.