How to Transform Your Garden into a Festive Winter Wonderland

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As this festive season approaches, we can’t stress more how neglecting your outdoor space is not an option this year. All the focus usually goes into decorating the front and inside of your home but it’s time to extend some Yuletide cheer into your backyard by putting some special effort into styling your backyard this Christmas season.

Transforming your outside space into a winter wonderland isn’t reserved for homes with children. It not only enhances the holiday spirit but provides a warm and inviting atmosphere for friends and family to enjoy the holidays in.

I’ve created the ultimate Christmas styling guide to help you get some inspiration on the best decorating scheme for your space. From dazzling outdoor lights to jolly ornaments, I’ve covered every aspect of your décor that you should be considering for creating a festive winter wonderland.

Let’s dig in.

1. Start with a palette

First things first, you need to decide on a colour scheme for your winter display. Whether you opt for traditional red and green tones or something contemporary and bold, this will provide you with some direction on shopping for your decorations and help you achieve a cohesive aesthetic.

There are many palettes outside of the standard red, green and golds, such as muted whites, deep blues and dainty silvers. You can punctuate your chosen schemes with vibrant pops of colour using frost-resistant plants such as winter jasmine, snowdrops, violets and crocuses.

You could shy away from muted colours and neutral décor and opt for as much colour as possible for a maximalist approach. Don’t be afraid of clashing colours and show your appreciation for excess by transforming your garden into Santa’s grotto. Use multicoloured LED lights, decorate your foliage with velvet bows and lawn with Christmas shapes.

2. Light up the outdoor space

Nothing says Merry Christmas like a twinkling garden display. Whether you use solar lights along footpaths or LEDS around trees and plants, creating zones adds a wonderful aspect to the space and is a good way to maximise the effect of your outdoor Christmas lighting.

Against the backdrop of snow and darker winter mornings, this lighting can be functional too and provides practical illumination. This is ideal for gardens with porches or steps as high-quality lighting can reduce the risk of trips and falls when it gets icy. An injury is the very last thing you need before Christmas Day.

Take your festive display one step further by adding some jolly Christmas silhouettes in the shape of Santa and his sleigh or a traditional nativity scene if you want to celebrate the religious reason for the season. Icicle lights are ideal for framing doorways and windows and pair beautifully with light-up penguin and reindeer figures.

3. Outdoor decorations

With outdoor decorations, you need to choose ones that are resilient to the outside elements and cold winter weather. Think garlands, poinsettias, ribbons, bells, and ornaments that you can place throughout your outside space.

Play up the childhood wonder of the season by decorating with sleighs, candy canes and other Christmas creatures. Gonks are a popular Yuletide character that are making appearances in winter decorating schemes all over the UK and provides the ideal playful, jolly atmosphere for your backyard.

There is seldom anything more Christmassy than a light-up wreath. Whether you hang it pride of place on your door or dotted along the garden fence, there are many ways to style your Christmas wreath. Keep it traditional with a holly and berry circlet or go for a contemporary pairing of sage, eucalyptus and fir. Top it all off with a plaid ribbon or some silver bells.

4. Wildlife and Your Winter Garden

Winter is already a challenging time for wildlife, especially with the dropping temperatures, but your garden can be a refuge for them. You can be considerate with your garden decorations and still end up with the winter wonderland of your dreams.

Start by only putting up lights in areas where wildlife is unlikely to inhabit. You can incorporate bird feeders with a variety of seeds to attract feathered friends such as cardinals, finches and robins. Festive suet cakes and peanut butter feeders can entice woodpeckers and nuthatches.

With temperatures dipping below zero, finding something to drink that isn’t frozen can be difficult for foxes, badgers and other garden inhabitants. Providing a water source will ensure your garden remains a haven for all manner of wildlife throughout the winter months. All you need to do is change the water every day to keep it fresh.

6. Seasonal Fragrances

Give your olfactory sense the gift of seasonal fragrances this year by incorporating winter scents into your garden. There are some smells that are reserved only for Christmas, such as fresh pine, star anise and sweet cinnamon.

Winter is considered the most barren of months, however your garden doesn’t need to appear bare and depressing. There is some gorgeous festive foliage that can really brighten up your garden. Why not plant fragrant winter-blooming flowers like witch hazel, winter honeysuckle and bright coloured pansies? These will add some unexpected colour and texture to your back garden.

For scents that really remind you of Christmas Day, consider placing pots of winter herbs such as rosemary, thyme, and lavender strategically around the garden. Even better is that not only are these herbs delightful to smell but they are also delicious to eat. You can use them fresh or dried in your Christmas dinner and dishes all year round.

7. Get ready to deck the halls

Outdoor garden displays have become a symbol of the holiday season and are an absolute must when getting into the Yuletide spirit. Extending your Christmas beyond your front door is the perfect opportunity to engage in some wholesome festive fun as you enjoy decorating together.

Whether you’re looking to add an element of fun to your garden scheme or keep things traditional, the beauty of Yuletide decoration is that you can mix and match until you find the scheme that resonates most with your home.


Why not save this image to Pinterest to inspire your home Festive decorations?

Transform your garden into a festive winter wonderland with our style guide.
Jen Stanbrook
Jen Stanbrook

Jen is an award winning digital publisher and has been creating interiors and home decor content for over 10 years.
She has an insatiable love of home interiors, has worked with hundreds of brands, and currently supports many bloggers within the creative industries to share their expertise through writing.
She spends most of her time in her little garden office pod, has 2 daughters and 2 (fighting) cats.

Find me on: Web | Twitter | Instagram

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