Keep Magnolia Leaves Fresh for the Season

Make the most of your magnolia-leaf garland during the holidays with tried-and-true tips for protection, maintenance and crafting.

Keep Your Magnolia Leaves Fresh + Green

Known for its elegant, classic appeal, magnolia garland is popular with homeowners coast to coast. Although it's considered nearly maintenance-free, there are a few tricks to ensuring your magnolia garland will last throughout the holiday season.

Unfurl Floral Wire to Remove Damaged Leaves

Magnolia garland is usually constructed with floral wire. The leaves are bound together in bunches, then grouped to create long strands. If leaves become damaged or discolored, consider unfurling a portion of the floral wire to remove the damaged leaf.

Cut Discolored Leaves

When magnolia garland is shipped long distance or even transported locally, it's likely some damage may occur from heavy-handed handling. If a damaged leaf sits in the middle of a strand rather than near its ends, it may be easier to simply cut the damaged leaf back with shears.

Protect With Plastic

To ensure the magnolia garland survives any harsh frosts or freezes, it's best to keep each strand wrapped in plastic overnight. For further protection, consider wrapping furniture blankets or canvas on top of the plastic.

Keep Leaves Hydrated by Misting

In areas with extra-dry climates, lightly hydrate the magnolia garland to keep its leaves from drying out quickly. Use a small spray bottle and simply mist the leaves lightly by keeping the bottle held eight inches from the magnolia.

But, Don't Overwater

While lightly misting magnolia leaves will protect them from dry climates, overwatering can be harmful. The key to knowing if the leaves are too wet is the amount of beaded water sitting on their leaves. If the leaves are soaked, they've been given too much water.

Secure With Zip Ties

Any time magnolia garland is being added along an expansive surface, use zip ties to keep it secure.

Shape the Garland

In addition to its traditional use, magnolia garland can also be arranged in a variety of different shapes such as wreaths or topiary. To create a magnolia topiary for your yard, add the garland to a wire tomato cage, then keep it secure with zip ties.