15 Things to Do With Holiday Plants After Christmas and New Year

Raul Cornelius is a Senior Editor at BalconyGardenWeb and an expert in flower and herb cultivation based in Phoenix, Arizona. A frequent speaker at horticultural events, he is also an active contributor to Facebook flower groups. Holding an MBA and a BCom, Raul blends his gardening skills with strong leadership and analytical abilities. Passionate about writing and photography, he enjoys early mornings with coffee and books, and nature bike rides during weekends.
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After all the festivities are over knowing these things to Do With Holiday Plants After Christmas and New Year is purposeful.

The festive decorations are incomplete without the holiday plants like Poinsettias, Christmas cacti, and Norfolk island pines. But what should you do with them once it is over? Should you discard them with the festive decor objects, ornaments, and Christmas tree or are there things to do with them? Discover below!

15 Best Ideas to Make Plants Look Festive for Holiday Season

Things to Do with Holiday Plants After Christmas and New Year

1. Christmas Trees

Holiday Plants After Christmas 1

Christmas trees (like Douglas Fir or Balsam Fir) are the number one festive centerpieces in homes during the holidays. Here is what you can do with them after Christmas:

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Garden Mulch: The needles of Christmas trees make excellent garden mulch. You can use these as they decompose slowly and add acidity to the soil.
  • Bird Sanctuary: Place the tree in your garden as a sanctuary for birds. A few bird feeders will look nice on them.
  • DIY Coasters: You can slice the trunk into thin discs and create natural eco-friendly coasters.
  • Plant Support: Don’t throw away the branches. They’ll make sturdy supports for other plants in your garden.

Check out more things you can do with dead Christmas trees here

2. Poinsettias

The lovely red Poinsettias are another Christmas favorite due to their red bracts. You can do many things with them once the holiday season passes.

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Just Let It Grow: Let the plant grow at its own sweet pace and it will be bigger and better for the next holiday season.
  • Gift It: Just pair it up with a few treats and gift it to a friend or family.

8 Best Holiday Season Plants to Grow from Cuttings

3. Amaryllis

Amaryllis is another pretty Christmas flowering bulb that finds little use after the season has passed. Well, not anymore!

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Bulb Storage: After the bloom fades, you should remove the dried leaves and store the bulb. You can save the bulb this way and get it to flower again after 8-12 weeks of dormancy.
  • Floral Arrangements: You can dry the Amaryllis flowers and use them in dried flower arrangements or potpourri.
  • Remove the Flower Stalk: Once the plant has done flowering, simply remove the flower stalk and let it grow at its own sweet pace. This way, it can be a great tabletop or shelf plant in warmer climates.

4. Norfolk Island Pine

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Often used as a Christmas tree alternative in warm climates, the Norfolk Island Pine has a delicate pyramid-like shape with soft, needle-like leaves.

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Tall Houseplant: You can keep it indoors as a houseplant. Just care for it and place it in a spot with bright, indirect light.
  • Decorative Element: You can also decorate it for other occasions.

16 Popular Holiday Season Houseplants | Festive Indoor Plants

5. Christmas Cactus

Things to Do With Holiday Plants 6
The Spruce / Kara Riley

The Christmas Cactus is a beautiful addition to the Christmas decor. But what to do with it after the holiday is over? Here’s what!

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Propagation: You can easily propagate Christmas Cactus by snipping off a section of the stem and planting it in moist soil. Make many from one.
  • Year-Round Care: Continue to care for it as a houseplant. With proper care, it can bloom again the next season.

6. Holly

Things to Do With Holiday Plants 7

Everyone loves adding Holly for its red berries and glossy green leaves. This is what you can do with this classy Christmas decor:

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Decorative Wreath: You can use the branches and berries to create decorative wreaths for the next holiday season.
  • Garden Accent: You can also plant it in your garden to add year-round greenery and attract birds with its berries.

6 Beautiful Holiday Cactus Types To Grow Indoors

7. Winterberry

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Winterberry is a deciduous holly variety that stands out with its vibrant red berries, making it a festive choice for holiday arrangements.

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Bird Feeder Adornment: You can adorn your bird feeder post-holidays with cut branches of Winterberry.
  • Dried Arrangements: You can also preserve the branches by drying them for cool indoor arrangements. Pair these up with pinecones and other dried elements for home decor.

8. Mistletoe

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Everyone loves Mistletoe for its romantic associations during Christmas. The small green leaves and white berries look wonderful. But what about post-Christmas?

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Wildlife Attraction: Did you know that mistletoe in the garden can attract birds and beneficial insects?
  • Herbal Uses: Some varieties of mistletoe are used in traditional medicine. You should research the variety you have and reap the benefits. Be careful as it is toxic, too.

48 Christmas Garden Decoration Ideas | Outdoor Christmas Decorations

9. Rosemary and Herbs

Holiday Plants After Christmas 9

Rosemary is not only decorative but also aromatic and culinary. And it’s shaped like a mini Christmas tree. So how to make use of it after New Year? And other popular Christmas herbs like thyme, sage, and cinnamon?

Post-Holiday Uses

  • Kitchen Herb Garden: Simple! Propagate more clones of these herbs and create a kitchen herb garden outdoors or on your balcony and use the clippings for cooking!
  • Fragrant Houseplant: You can also keep them as indoor plants. The herbs will add aroma and you’ll harvest fresh sprigs.

10. Cyclamen

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The heart-shaped leaves and delicate flowers of Cyclamen are beautiful to look at and it keeps doing it till spring.

Post-Holiday Uses

  • After-Bloom Care: Once the flowers fade, you should reduce the watering to allow the plant to go inactive stage in summer. Keep it in a cool place with indirect light.

25 Eye Catching Succulent Christmas Table Decoration Designs

More Things to Do in Home and Garden After Christmas and New Year

You now know how to make the most of your Christmas plants after the holiday season. But do you know there is still a ton of stuff that will make your garden better? Here it is.

11. Plant Your Tree in the Garden

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If you have a live Christmas tree, you should plant it in your yard. It will come in handy for other holidays or the next Christmas. This sustainable choice will allow your tree to grow and be enjoyed for many years to come.

It’s also a good idea to plant it in a container or plastic bag so that you can dig it out easily later and its roots won’t spread.

12. Compost and Recycle

If your holiday plants are beyond saving, plant their cuttings and turn the rest of their parts into compost.

30 Charming Succulent Christmas Trees

13. Gift and Share Houseplants

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You can spread the post-holiday joy by gifting your holiday plants to friends and family. Plants make a lovely gift and last for a long time, reminding them of you.

You can also share your healthy plants with hospitals, retirement homes, or community centers and do your part for society.

14. Repurpose Plant Elements for Decor

You don’t have to toss out decorative elements like holly branches, evergreen sprigs, or pinecones just yet. You can easily repurpose these for various crafts and home decor projects.

Why not give these DIY Pinecone Gnomes a try? They’ll look amazing in your home.

15. Host a Plant Swap Meet

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You can also host a plant swap meet in your neighborhood or town. People would love to come and spend time together. This way, your plants won’t go to waste, and they will find new homes to flourish and you’ll get some new ones in exchange, for example, the snake plants 😃.

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