How to Decorate a Tumbleweed


Tumbleweeds are dense, rounded shrubs with spiny stems. These plants grow in arid, desert regions in fields, plains and along roadsides. When fully grown, tumbleweeds become detached at the base of their main stems. Their green branches become dry and golden brown as they lose moisture. Strong winds blow them over the surface of the ground. Tumbleweeds can be collected and decorated for use in home or outdoor decor.

Things You'll Need

  • Gloves
  • Tumbleweed
  • Plastic trash bags
  • Flame retardant spray paint
  • Decorative pot
  • Floral foam or styrofoam
  • Hot glue gun
  • Dried moss or dirt
  • String of twinkle lights
  • Glass ornaments or colored balls
  • Ribbon
  • String of beads
  • Wear a pair of gloves to protect your hands from injury. Lay a plastic trash bag out on a flat outdoor surface. Hold the tumbleweed over the plastic bag and shake it to remove loose branches, debris and bugs. Fold up the trash bag and discard it.

  • Set the tumble weed down on the outdoor surface and use a garden hose to spray it down. Spray the water on the tumbleweed gently so as not to damage it. Wash off all dirt and dust from the branches and place the tumbleweed in a sunny, warm and well-ventilated area. Leave it to dry for two hours.

  • Cover the outdoor surface once more with plastic trash bags. Set the clean, dry tumbleweed on top of the plastic bags. Cover any nearby shrubs, buildings or vehicles with plastic bags to protect them.

  • Choose a color of flame retardant spray paint and shake the can a few times to mix up the paint inside. Remove the lid and spray the surface of the tumbleweed, holding the can 10 to 12 inches away from the surface. Move the can evenly over the surface of the tumbleweed until it is completely coated. Leave the tumbleweed to dry for 30 minutes to one hour.

  • Turn the tumble weed over and spray it with another coat of spray paint. Look for areas that the paint did not reach and be sure to spray over them. Stop painting once the tumbleweed is completely coated. Let the tumbleweed sit for 30 minutes to one hour to dry.

  • Fill a decorative pot with floral foam or Styrofoam. Cover its surface with hot glue, using a glue gun. Spread dried moss or dirt over the glue to completely cover the surface of the foam.

  • Remove a few of the bottom branches from the tumbleweed to create a longer base stem. Position the tumbleweed over the center of the pot and push it downward to insert its stem into the foam.

  • Wind a string of twinkle lights around the branches of the tumbleweed or hang glass ornaments or colored balls from the branches. Wind ribbon or a string of beads around the branches instead of, or in addition to, the lights. Cut lengths of ribbon and tie them in bows around the tips of the branches.

Tips & Warnings

  • Change the ornaments on your tumbleweed to match the current holiday.
  • Never leave the lights on a tumbleweed plugged in without supervision.

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