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Preserving evergreen trimmings?


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Do any of you use evergreen trimmings during the holiday season?

Do you preserve them or replace as they dry out?


I'm thinking about using some here and there but very reluctant to. This house is warm, dry, and has plenty of circulating air in the winter. When it comes to holiday wreaths, garlands, swags, and such, it's a giant dehydrator.


I've read several methods. Soak the trimmings in water overnight to green up and restore moisture, allow to air dry until no longer wet, spread out and spray with a product called Wilt-Pruf or some other natural antidessicant. Lightly crush branch tips and soak in water for a day or three then spray with hairspray (as though I need -another- fire hazard this time of the year). Glycerin treatments for certain plants. Frequent misting. Dip in floor wax. The list goes on.


The glycerin method seems interesting and simple but there is limited information on its use with coniferous plants. I guess that's a good indicator that it doesn't work well - probably too viscous to be readily absorbed and with the evergreens going into dormancy they're not going to be very thirsty. The floor wax (I have floor sealer with acrylic that I used to glitter the inside of clear ornaments) sounds interesting as well, but I don't want stiff foliage. I thought about dipping in wax but the thought of flaked wax everywhere makes that idea an absolute no (and it's a fire hazard).


What works for you?

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I soak them overnight and let them dry, I live in very humid weather but we do run the heater which dries out the house.  Mine usually last about 4 weeks before they start to drop needles.  I love the smell of fresh pine in the house so I always buy cuttings if we don't get a tree.

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That's why I was thinking about it - the smell. We use an artificial tree and the lack of that nostalgic Christmas tree scent really takes away from the experience and I'm a bit over it.


I might stop by one of the tree lots and see if they have any trimmings available then stop by a nursery and see if they have an antidessicant spray for wilting. If that doesn't work, I guess I could offer to prune the neighbor's cypress. At least I'd have a convenient source if I need to replace anything.


Then again, I could whip up a bunch of candles and smelly things with a nice fir FO. Now that's an idea - I'll blend some fir, spruce, cedar, juniper, eucalyptus... but nothing compares to the real thing, IMO.

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I can only recommend what yall should definitely not do.


Do not put them in a ziploc bag or tupperware container.


I love the smell of conifer, but am very allergic to pine trees, so I don't know what in the world possessed me but. This past summer, my mother and I went on a mini road trip, and at one point we stopped at a gas station / car wash in the middle of nowhere. There were big pine trees in the landscaping that smelled really good. On impulse, I had my mother play lookout for me while I grabbed some branches and stuffed them into a big paper bag and threw them in the trunk. My only adulthood memory of stealing and it was three small pine tree branches from a car wash. Living on the wild side.


So I got home and spent 2 hours processing them. That tree kicked my *** so justice was met. Woke up the next morning and my face looked and felt like I had been sucker punched by a giant a week prior. But it didn't matter, I had ziploc bags and tupperware containers full of sweet, balsamic, sticky goodness to do who knows what with. After about 10 days, I came to my senses and realized that I couldn't do anything with them, duh. Had a relative who wanted them. Okay cool, this whole stupid experience was still worth something.


But, when I went to check on them, they were covered in MOLD. So much mold. Mold for days. But they still smelled good! I just needed to uh, air them out. So I opened the bags/containers and put them in the open windowsill. This riveting saga ended in the local urgent care with multiple "the hell were you thinking" looks.


So! I definitely do recommend trying a method beyond stuffing them in airtight containers.

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I was not meaning to laugh when I hit the like button, but naughty nancy your post did make me laugh!

I LOVE the smell of pine during the holidays and I do get a real tree....though they hardly ever smell :(

I am hoping to get on some decorating this weekend....so I say.

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  • 1 year later...

Hi. I’m late to the topic, but wanted to let people know that glycerin does work w/ evergreens,  Use the glycerin at 1/1 ratio to water, & be sure the water is very hot, but not boiling.. Glycerin- treating is kind of hit-or miss; some don’t absorb the solution, so treat more than you think you’d need. The nice thing is the scent of the cedar I did was retained, so I assume it would be in other greenery, too, Unfortunately, the color isn’t . Hope this is helpful .

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