If you like pinecone crafts then these adorable and easy to make succulent pinecones and succulent pumpkins make a beautiful thanksgiving centerpiece for the table or your mantel.
I can not believe that Thanksgiving is 10 days away. As I write this post, the weather today in San Diego is sunny and a balmy 82ºF. Even by our standards, it’s a bit warm for November. But whether I like it or not, the calendar doesn’t lie. It is November.
Living in Southern California mean s living with water restrictions. We have already removed all grass from our yard and have an odd assortment of drought tolerant plants. Right now it’s a mish-mash assortment of plant, as we do not want desert landscaping. We live 8 miles from the nearest beach, for goodness sake!
That’s why I love succulents so much. They are drought tolerant, do not require my complete and undivided attention, and they are really quite beautiful. But more importantly, unlike their cactus cousins, they don’t scream desert landscaping to me.
Besides food and photography, my other passion is getting crafty. I just love making new things and getting creative. And my latest love of succulents, makes it a natural merging of two of my most favorite things.
How to Propagate Succulents
If you are not familiar with succulents, here’s some tips on propagating succulents. First of all, it’s ridiculously easy to do. Each leaf of a succulent plant can become a full grown plant, if removed properly. The key is to keep the leaf intact upon removal. This can be done by wiggling the leaf off gently from the succulent.
Once the leaf is removed let it dry for a few days in an empty tray until the raw ends have calloused. If you live in dry climates, like San Diego, this can happen after 24 hours. Once the callous is formed, start spritizing it with water every few days and let it sit on damp soil. Little roots will start to form and tiny baby succulents will eventually grow.
Succulent cuttings can also be planted in soil or water once the callous is formed. As you work with more varieties of succulents, you quickly find that what works best with each variety. Keep your baby succulents out of full sun as they can quickly dry up before they have a fighting chance of survival.
How Much Water Do Succulents Need?
Succulents do not need much water. In fact, many times I’ve seen succulents die because of root rot from too much water. They can survive in dry soil for many days. It all depends on how much sun your succulent receives a day.
I tell my mom not to water her succulents unless the soil is dry. This rule helps keep her plants flourishing, as she has a tendency of over-watering her plants! I have forgotten to water some of my succulents for several weeks. As they were in the shade, they survived my thoughtlessness.
But just like other plants, not stressing your succulents is the best way to grow a happy plant. So rule of thumb: don’t drown your succulents or let them sit in water for days on end. Do water you succulents when soil is totally dry.
I have already shared a few spring crafts using succulents. Today I’m showing some fun pinecone crafts that will make a beautiful Thanksgiving centerpiece for your table or mantel. My neighbor brought me some of those gorgeously huge pinecones from her visits to Mammoth, California. And I knew I wanted to make something with them!
They stand up beautifully on their own, so I decided to top them with a few succulents. When I made my succulent eggs and bunnies, I was using tiny baby succulents and moss. The succulents stayed alive for months with just spraying them with water every few days.
This time I made little burlap planters with a bit of dirt. Instead of dirt you can also use sphagnum moss, as it hold moisture very well. A little square of burlap, some dirt or moss and your succulents is all you need to make a mini planter for your pinecone. Try not to use big succulents. If the top is too heavy, it will topple your pinecone over.
I tied the burlap closed with some hemp twine and this baby was ready for its new home. Before I hot glued the burlap planter to my pinecone, I did snip away a prongs of the pinecone so it would form a bowl to hold my succulents. Once glued, my succulent pinecones were done. You can also use gardening wire to secure the succulents to the pinecone.
You glue on some more twine and other preserved moss, like these, to your succulent pinecones. To keep the succulents alive, all they need is a few sprays of water to keep the soil moist but remember, not soaking wet. Your succulents will last in these pinecone planters for as long as you want!
You can also invert your pinecone and make a hanging pinecone planter for your succulents, like this one from The Inspired Home and Garden. Cute, right?!
More Succulent Thanksgiving Centerpieces
If you are looking for more ways to showcase succulents during the holiday season, I have a few more suggestions for you. Succulents offer such a nice touch to the holiday table – and they are allergen-free! Raise your hand if you sneeze around fresh flowers! (see me waving my hand?)
Pumpkins are just for fall decor or for halloween. I love the look of white pumpkins, instead of the traditional orange varieties. If you’ve been intimidated with those large pumpkins adorned with succulents, go mini sized!
I followed the same technique I used for the succulent eggs and bunnies to make these succulent pumpkins. I hot glued some moss on top of my pumpkins, and then hot glued small succulents around it. I also included some hemp twine, but you can also add small twigs and mini pinecones or acorns.
Again, as you spray your succulents with water, the moss soaks in the moisture. This is all the baby succulents need to flourish. These succulent pumpkins will last for many months. By then, it’ll be Valentine’s Day and you can pluck out the succulents and plant them in the garden.
You don’t need to be handy with the glue gun to create a show stopper of a succulent centerpiece for the holidays. Pictured above I arranged some of my white craft pumpkins with pinecones, candles and mini pots of succulents. I add some fresh greens like olive branches and rosemary and you have a rustic, but beautiful centerpiece for the table.
The dried white pips add some more pops of white to match the pumpkins and candles. If you don’t want to put everything right on the table, you also make a similar arrangement in a rectangular tray or round metal platter. All of these items are things I found around my house. A little touch of farmhouse, but still an elegant thanksgiving centerpiece.
I hope this inspires you to get a little creative for the holidays. It only takes a few minutes out of your day to create any of these fun thanksgiving centerpieces. And don’t be shy in getting the kids involved. They can help you search the house and yard for everything you need.
- 2 large pinecones
- assortment of small succulents
- 2 2-inch square pieces of burlap
- 2 TBS succulent soil or sphagnum moss
- hemp twine
- hot glue
- plant shears
- With the pinecones standing upright, snip off a few of the top leaves of the pinecone to create a small bowl for your succulents to sit in.
- Place the larger succulents with a tablespoon of dirt inside each square piece of burlap.
- Use your twine to close up and secure the plants and dirt. You can also use sphagnum moss instead of dirt.
- Slide in the smaller succulents into the arrangement.
- Hot glue your burlap planter onto the top of your pinecone. Add any more small pieces of succulents now.
- Water your succulents every 3-5 days. You do not want to over water the soil, just moisten it. Let soil dry between waterings.