How to Preserve Wreaths

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When the holidays come to an end and we look toward minimizing and organizing for the New Year, you don't have to discard that beautiful holiday wreath. Instead, preserve your wreath with a few simple ingredients and display it in your home year-round.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

There are several ways to preserve a boxwood wreath, one of which includes pre-soaking the boxwood clippings in glycerin and green dye for several days prior to making the wreath. The glycerin keeps the elasticity of the boxwood and the green dye is absorbed to maintain the color.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

The method outlined below is to preserve a pre-made wreath that you might have purchased at a nursery or store. This preserving method works for any flower or foliage -- boxwood, evergreen, etc. The amount of time to desiccate each plant matter requires a little trial and error, as the thickness of the the leaves or petals will dictate the drying time.

Things You'll Need

  • Borax
  • Cornmeal or sand
  • Box that can be closed 
(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 1

In a large bowl, mix one part Borax and two parts cornmeal or sand.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • The cornmeal (or sand) is required to minimize the acidity of the Borax.

Step 2

Place a generous amount of Borax and cornmeal mixture at the bottom of the box.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 3

Place the wreath inside the box.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 4

Slowly cover the wreath with the Borax/cornmeal mix.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 5

You want to slowly build up layer by layer so that the leaves keep their shape and are not crushed.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Step 6

Continue this process until the wreath is completely covered. The wreath should be covered, but the mixture should not be packed.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • This wreath measured 20 by 20 inches and required two boxes of Borax (4 pounds, 12 ounces each) and six bags of cornmeal (750 grams).

Step 7

Close the box cover and place it in a cool place for seven to 14 days.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

Tip

  • You can use any cardboard or plastic box that contains a lid. It does not have to be an air tight container.

Step 8

Remove the wreath from the box and shake off the sandy materials. You might need to brush off some of the remaining mixture.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

After seven days, the wreath still had its beautiful green leaves, but there was a little discoloration on some of the leaves that were not fully covered.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

If you choose to preserve fresh boxwood clippings instead of a pre-assembled wreath, check out how to turn them into a beautiful boxwood wreath. For more DIY wreath inspo, check out How to Make a Wreath for Your Front Door.

(Image: Lucy Akins)

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