How to make a Homemade Christmas Planter

How to make a Homemade Christmas Planter

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While my husband and sons are away the first weekend of deer hunting, my step mom, step sisters, and I hang out and make homemade Christmas planters in my step mom’s garage. It’s a fun tradition we started several years ago and I look forward to it (and the yummy food we have afterwards) every year.

You can certainly buy a premade Christmas planter—or, as some people refer to them, a “Christmas porch pot”. There are many nurseries that make and sell them. I’ve also seen them for sale at hardware stores, Walmart—anywhere that might sell Christmas decorations. It’s also common to hear of “ladies groups” getting together at a local occasional shop or craft boutique to make their own—they pay a fee, and everything is provided.

But you can totally make these Christmas planters yourself, or turn it into an excuse to get together with friends and do it all together. It’s not complicated, and it’s totally flexible to what you have available—although someone with access to pine trees is a must!

What you need to make a homemade Christmas Planter

Pine branches: Do you have pine trees that are hanging down and getting in your face when you mow or do yard work? This is a great time to do some dual purpose trimming. If you have a variety of pine trees available, that’s great, too. My step mom has both balsam and white pine trees, so that adds a nice variety to the planters.

Note: You generally will not need as many branches as you think you will to build your homemade Christmas planter. Ask me how I know this. If you’re putting the planters together at the same property the pine trees are located, it’s best to cut a couple branches and go back for more, than cutting a ton of branches you didn’t need to. However, if you’re cutting the branches and bringing them to someone else’s house to construct the planters, use your best judgement about how many to cut.

A container of some sort: You can use any container you’d like—the sky’s the limit. Just keep in mind, the bigger the planter, the more dirt it requires—which means it will be heavier. A bigger container will also require more pine branches, which might make it more “pokey” to move.

When choosing a container, keep in mind whether it will be an indoor or outdoor planter. I advise against using fragile containers for an outside Christmas planter, especially if you live where it gets super cold.

Dirt/Soil: Remember—if you live where the ground freezes or you aren’t able to dig where you live, you might have to purchase a bag of soil for this project.

Christmas tree decorations: You can use ornaments, lights, strings of beads, ribbon… anything you would normally use to decorate a Christmas tree. Check thrift stores, dollar general, garage sales, or your own Christmas decoration totes! We have a box of “Christmas stuff” that we’ve all collected over the years that anyone making a Christmas planter is free to dig into to fancy up their planter!

Nature additions: Depending on the look you’re going for, sometimes things like pine cones or small birch twigs make a nice addition to the Christmas planter.

Tools you might need: shovel, gloves, wire cutter, hot glue gun, hooks for the ornaments.

We used to make our homemade Christmas planters for outside. Then our barn cat population exploded
and they decided Christmas ornaments were fun to play around with.

3 easy steps to make a homemade Christmas planter

1 — Fill whatever container you’ve chosen with dirt, about 3/4 of the way full.

2 — Arrange the pine branches in the container by poking them into the dirt. Keep in mind where you plan to put the planter. Will it be up against something, like a wall? Then build it so it’s taller at the back than the front. Will it be a centerpiece? Arrange it differently, with the tallest pieces in the center. Remember you can cut those branches down or peel smaller “twigs” from it—you don’t have to use the entire branch exactly as it came off the tree.

And the best part about arranging the pine branches? You can do it over and over again until you get it the way you like it.

3 — Add decorations. This is pretty much like decorating a Christmas tree, but on a smaller scale. Have fun with it! Don’t forget to add some fancy to the actual container (a bow, a ribbon around it) if you’d like.

FAQs about making a homemade Christmas planter

How long does a homemade Christmas planter last? I find it depends on the year. If it’s been a dry year, the planters don’t last as long—the branches seem ready to lose their needles sooner.

We always make our planters at the beginning of November. Some years I’ve had them make it all the way to Christmas, and other years they’ve barely made it past Thanksgiving.

Do I have to water my homemade Christmas planter? This was suggested one year as a way to make them last longer, but we didn’t see a big difference. You can certainly try it if you’d like. It’s not going to hurt anything.

Yes, I even put one in the bathroom.

Will you make a homemade Christmas planter this year?

They’re easy to make, and are a great way to spruce up your house for the holidays without spending a lot of money. I’d love to see a picture if you decide to make one. You can send me a picture of your awesome Christmas planter to [email protected] or message me on social media.

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