eucalyptus and candle holders in dough bowl

Disclosure: this post may contain affiliate links, which means I may make a commission if you decide to make a purchase through one of my links, at no cost to you.

If you are struggling with getting everything ready for the holidays, setting the table, sifting through the decorations in storage (and the decorations you forgot you bought on clearance last year)…

… if you’re wanting to look like one of those magazine/Pinterest/HGTV picture-perfect holiday setups, but you’re as behind on everything as I am…

… if you experience holiday whiplash in one form or another every year (even though it’s right there on the damn calendar, and on the same date too; why does it always go off so wildly on my house??)…

I need to tell you about a little trick. And all of the blogs you read are probably using it. (Just spoiler alert, k? This is one of those things that’s not really that big of a deal, but once you know what to look for, you can’t unsee it, like that HIMYM episode.)

Here it is: a lot of your favorite decorating and design bloggers use eucalyptus bunches when styling photos, and we all buy it from the same place (Trader Joe’s). Here’s why:

seeded eucalyptus

The decorating magic of a seeded eucalyptus bouquet:

  • It’s a mix of seeded eucalyptus, silver dollar eucalyptus, and baby blue eucalyptus. (Correct me if I’m wrong here with the names… I just know to grab the greenery bouquet and be on my way)
  • It adds that “oomph” of whatever is missing in the shot (green just makes everything look fresh, and I’ve heard even realtors when you’re selling a house will probably suggest you have fresh flowers or plants for staging)
  • It’s got that perfect green hue that seems to fit every style: farmhouse/modern/chic/etherial/bright/spring/holidays all at once
  • It stays photo-ready for a long time, regardless of how good you are with caring for cut flowers, and adds a great smell to whatever we’re working (eucalyptus is one of my favorite scents, actually)
  • Even when it dries out, it still looks awesome and turns a dusty green color, great for winter decor and wreaths (I put dried stems in a vase near my fireplace to use if I’m running short on time and can’t go get fresh flowers or greens).
  • You can add it to something in minutes (say, just before company arrives) and boom: blah to decorated.
  • AND IT’S AVAILABLE FOR LESS THAN $3 (which is perfect for a thrifty blogger’s styling budget)

You don’t have to take my word for it, though: I’ve got a ton of examples to show you just how versatile this stuff is. If you want to just use it as the main decor and  a few candleholders, it’s still somehow festive for whatever occasion. You can separate out the types and get completely different looks. If you want to add it into a spring bouquet, the silver dollar and seeded types layer incredibly well. One of my favorite decorators, Julie Blanner, seems to just nail the “less is more” aesthetic every season, and wouldn’t ya know it…

Julie Blanner - seeded eucalyptus
Julie Blanner – fall table / fall tour / rose bouquet

Pair it with a pumpkin, and it’s a farmhouse Thanksgiving (like Home Stories A to Z’s fall table)…

elegant-black-and-white-farmhouse-table-for-fall-14-790x1193-homestoriesa2z

My Fabuless Life used them for a colorful theme:

Thanksgiving-Table-Setting-Ideas-MyFabulessLife.com_

Maison de Pax used copper (my favorite):

fall-table-neutral-blush-pumpkins-and-peaches-20-maisondepax

Pair it with a few pine branches or pinecones, and it’s suddenly Christmas-y. You can use it to fill in other greenery too, as Chic California did:

https://chiccalifornia.com/2017/09/29/fall-family-room-tour/

In weddings,

Feature-Romantic-Outdoor-Sweetheart-Table-for-Wedding-or-Valentines-Day-3-of-12-768x1155
Photo: Kelly Nan

In crafts,

Striped-Gold-Foil-Bowl
Photo: Delineate Your Dwelling

It’s everywhere…

wreath-1-of-1-nourishandnestle
Photo: Nourish and Nestle
Photo: The Home I Create
Photo: Domestic Charm

I tried it out on my own this year for my fall home tour, for this paint stick project, and with styling smaller objects (this photo is actually for a new sponsored post in the future — I’ll share more about that at a future date).

wine charms and EVV wine - UDH

Of course, it’s also possible to have too much of a good thing — as I showed you in my dining room in that same fall tour — so you still have to remember to edit… (yikes)

greenery on dining room table
*hangs head*

Since I fully admit how overzealous I got with my early fall table and feel I could have done better, I thought about sharing this post with you guys and decided to revisit the table decor before Thanksgiving. I have a dinner party I’m planning just before Christmas, and I feel a simple setup will be more fitting. Instead of the entire bunch, I used a few dried stems of a single variety and threw them around some candle holders. It smells wonderful, and it just seems more my speed (I mean, I’m already struggling with dinner as it is!).

simple dough bowl with eucalyptus and copper accents - thanksgiving table

I’m certain I’ll probably play with it some more… I need to pick up a few more of these leaf chargers and I’ll probably add in some pinecones to match the tree decor before long.

copper mugs on thanksgiving table

Point is: if you’re running short on time, consider these greens the hack for a quick table setting. Or turn the branches into a wreath. Or add a sprig to your gift tags. Or just put them in a vase and let them eventually dry out, and find another place to use them year-round.

decorating magic with eucalyptus leaves

How do you use greenery in your decor?


For the record, this isn’t a sponsored post — I doubt TJ’s has ever had my name in their mouth, or ever will. I just wanted to give you guys an easy decorating tip that has been in my mind for a while to share (because the glass shattered for me LONG ago and I can’t unsee it, like how most people in movies never spit after they brush their teeth — and no one seems to have morning breath when they wake up).

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9 Comments

    1. Trader Joe’s! Maybe I should emphasize that more in the post. The bunches can be found there for super cheap!

      1. Honestly, you may have. I’m just so tired and hurting from my projects, I can’t retain much. Thanks for letting me know though. I’ve wanted some for years to put in my showers.

        1. I understand! If I ever don’t put that info in the post though (because I too might just be too tired or whatever and forget), feel free to call me out on it so that the post is more helpful to all. I just didn’t want to lay the brand on too thick so that people didn’t think I was trying to sound like a commercial, ha!

  1. I love eucalyptus! Just be careful what it touches. I had a eucalyptus wreath that left a stain on the wall. I didn’t realize that it wasn’t fully dried eucalyptus and it oozed some onto the wall. Most of it washed off but the remaining stain took several coats of paint to cover (should have used Kilz first but didn’t). Not sure how long it took as the wreath was hanging for many years.

    1. Hmm, never heard that before, thanks for the tip! Did you try a magic eraser first? I always use those to get anything off my walls and it’s worked on a surprising array of dirt.

  2. Hi love everything you put together! The eucalyptus, is it fresh or dried. I bought fresh silver dollar ones at my local shoprite but it didn’t stay nice. I read that you have to dry it with glycerin?

    1. Mine was fresh and dried on its own very nicely. I still have lots of dried eucalyptus downstairs and haven’t had to coat it in anything.