When we think of the Christmas holidays, we picture plenty of red and green, twinkling lights and of course, lots of evergreen foliage everywhere we look. Holly plants are a superstar of holiday decor, and it’s easy to see why. Not only is holly the perfect color for Christmas, but also its rich history and symbolism bring ancient traditions into the present day. Take a look at why the designers at Billy Heroman’s Flowers find December’s birth “flower” to be everything we love this time of year.
What is Holly?
Holly is an evergreen tree or shrub that can grow up to 10-15 feet tall. Its thick, leathery dark green leaves have noticeably serrated edges with bright red berries (on the female versions of the plant) that are toxic when consumed by humans (and most household pets). Able to thrive in sunlight or shade with well-drained soil, this versatile shrub or tree is easy to grow. Branches of this festive plant have symbolized various ideas for different cultures around the world and throughout history. Due in part to its deciduous quality, holly is often used to decorate for many winter holidays and celebrations.
What Does Holly Symbolize?
Holly was once sacred to the Druids and Romans due to its long-lasting qualities through harsh winters. The Druids believed that the holly plant possessed protective qualities and brought good luck. The Romans also saw this wintergreen plant as a symbol of good luck, and would often give wreaths made from holly to newlyweds. The Chinese decorated their temples and large halls with holly to welcome the New Year in winter. Christians adopted the tradition of decorating with holly during the winter and changed the symbolism to reflect the Christmas holidays – the thorns represent the crown of thorns and the red berries represent the blood of Christ.
Holly Berries on Snowy Branch
Holly Wreath on Old Door
How Can We Decorate with Holly?
There’s nothing easier than decorating with holly for the holidays. The green leaves and red berries create a natural color scheme for Christmas. Plus, the fresh, bright quality of the shiny leaves looks great throughout your Christmas-ready home. We use green and variegated holly in our arrangements. It’s long-lasting and can be enjoyed in the house throughout the month, so long as it’s in water. Whether you include holly in your holiday centerpiece, front door wreath or mantle decor, you can be sure it will fit right in and add a festive touch to your holidays. Send a beautiful, holly-infused holiday bouquet like our Christmas Cheer bouquet or Heaux Heaux Heaux bouquet to someone special this holiday season, especially if they celebrate a December birthday.
Christmas Cheer Bouquet
Heaux Heaux Heaux Bouquet
Enjoy the look and style of holly during the winter season, especially once you know the history and symbolism behind this versatile winter beauty. The bold look of spiky leaves and bright red berries brings out all sorts of legends and stories. Plus its colors reflect the magic of Christmas and the sense of endurance and longevity since it doesn’t die in winter. For more great ways to include holly in your winter and holiday decor, talk to the floral experts at Billy Heroman’s Flowers. We can help you choose bouquets full of holly to send to friends and loved ones, or find something perfect for decorating your home this holiday season.