What Types of Greenery Should You Use as Party Décor After Christmas?

Yes, pine may be too festive post-holidays, but a beautiful ivy plant or paperwhite can reinvent your décor from now until springtime.

simple table setting with flowers
Photo: Linda Raymond / Getty Images

It's a funny time of year: The period of time that falls between the winter holidays and before the start of spring is a type of limbo, especially when it comes to decorating for a January or February party. While holly berries, fresh pine, and poinsettias are beautiful during the thrum of the holiday season, they don't necessarily work after the fact. So, what greenery and florals should can you incorporate into your home, instead? If you're searching for a few fresh ideas to add some green to your winter blues, we have you covered. Ahead, horticultural expert Debbie Neese of Lively Root and entertaining and home expert Lucy Cuneo, who is also a photographer, share their visionary ideas.

Look to early bulb florals.

Come the month of December, everything is pine and holly berries. However, post-Christmas, many of us look to renew our spaces with fresh plants and greens that aren't tied to the holidays. Cuneo loves making arrangements that feel in-line with the current season, as she eagerly anticipates the arrival of spring. "After the holidays, I am desperately awaiting spring flowers," she says, noting that she feels drawn to early bulb flowers, like hellebores, daffodils, and paperwhites, all of which have pretty foliage. Cuneo's love for ranunculus, snapdragons, lily of the valley, and early tulips inform her tabletop arrangements, so she takes a "winter bulb garden" approach and turns grown versions—which you can grow or find at a a local garden center—into décor pieces. As for what to do with your dried-up pine? Neese tosses hers in the compost pile.

Integrate a few potted houseplants.

Needless to say, homes look a little bare sans twinkling holiday trees, pine garlands, and Christmas cactus blooms. "The greens are gone from the holidays and people feel a bit 'naked' after removing all of their decorations," affirms Neese, who recommends filling in any sparse areas with houseplants, instead. If you're hoping to up a table setting's green factor, decorate with cascading ivy plants, Chinese Evergreens, or a humble spider plant—all of which will add that verdant pop to your party.

Turn to other in-season options.

While raising a monstera or planting your own bulb garden sounds wonderful in theory, not everyone has a green thumb. If you fall into this category and want to approach decorating with greenery simply for January and February celebrations, look to seasonal options that are in-stock at your local flower retailer or supermarket; expect to see iterations like cedar (which is winter, not holiday centric!) and seeded eucalyptus, which works year round. Or, pull tons of branches from your backyard: "These work really well for the shoulder season. If it's not a time of bounty, you can create that feeling by doing lots of one thing," says Cuneo.

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