13 Must-Have Plants For A Festive Outdoor Space

It’s that time of year again, when we’re all feeling cheerful and looking forward to the holidays with family and friends! If your outdoor space is looking a little bare, here are 13 plants that will help you create a festive setting. They’ll make your home feel more inviting, too.

10 low-maintenance plants for a stylish garden
The holidays are the perfect time to create a festive outdoor space.
Choose plants that are suited to your climate and outdoor space.
Consider adding festive decorations, such as lights and wreaths.
Growing your own Christmas tree can be a fun and rewarding experience.
Low-maintenance plants like succulents are a great option for busy gardeners.

Japanese maples

Japanese maples are a great choice for fall because they add color to otherwise dull-looking areas of your yard. They’re also easy to grow and will provide you with many years of enjoyment.

Japanese maples can be used as a screen, hedge or border plant to create privacy between properties or along property lines. 

You can also use them as borders around ponds and lakes, where they will attract wildlife such as birds, butterflies and small mammals that eat their leaves.

Give your garden a Christmas make-over with the help of our comprehensive guide on creating a Christmas garden. Learn how to add a touch of the festive season to your outdoor space with unique and affordable décor ideas.

Chinese Fringe Flower (Loropetalum)

Chinese fringe is a small shrub with thin, pointed leaves and colorful blooms that are shaped like pompoms. The plant can be grown in partial shade or full sun. It thrives in moist soil and produces bright red flowers in spring.

The Chinese fringe flower is easy to care for and can be propagated by dividing the roots or stem cuttings. The plant will bloom year-round if it’s kept indoors during the winter months.

Characteristics of Chinese Fringe Flower (Loropetalum)

ColorThe leaves are typically burgundy, but can also be green or variegated.
ShapeThe leaves are oval-shaped and about 1-2 inches long.
BloomsThe plant produces small, fragrant pink or white flowers in the spring.
SizeChinese Fringe Flower typically grows to be 6-10 feet tall and 6-8 feet wide.
HardinessChinese Fringe Flower is hardy in USDA zones 7-10.
Sun NeedsIt grows best in full sun to partial shade.
Soil NeedsThe plant prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic.
Water NeedsChinese Fringe Flower needs regular watering, especially during hot, dry periods.
MaintenancePrune the plant regularly to maintain its shape and size.

Note: This table provides an overview of the characteristics of Chinese Fringe Flower (Loropetalum), including its color, shape, blooms, size, hardiness, sun and soil needs, water needs, and maintenance requirements.

Shepherd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris)

So you’ve got the garden space set up and you’re ready to go, but what should you plant? Here are some of our favorite options.

Plant them in groups. If you have a particular looking in mind, try planting your seeds or seedlings in groups rather than all over the place. This will create an intentional garden that looks more beautiful and planned out than if everything was planted randomly.

Get plants that bloom at different times of year to keep things colorful throughout the seasons! 

For example, ferns tend to flower in spring and summer, whereas cacti like cactus blooms can last throughout wintertime (or even beyond).

Turn your garden into a magical winter wonderland using our guide on transforming your garden during the festive season. With innovative lighting and garden features, your garden will be the envy of the neighborhood.

Loropetalum chinense Purpureum Group

Loropetalum chinense Purpureum Group is a plant and also a shrub. It grows in many places around the world, including China and Korea. 

It’s part of the Loropetalaceae family and is known for its showy purple flowers that bloom in summer or early fall. 

The tree can grow up to 10 feet tall with a spread of 8-10 feet wide when mature, so it should be planted in an area where it has room to grow without becoming too crowded by other plants or structures nearby.

Loropetalum chinense Purpureum Group prefers full sun but will tolerate partial shade too; however if you are growing this outdoors make sure there’s plenty of sunlight throughout most days so as not to stunt its growth potential! 

A well-drained soil mix containing plenty of composted manure is best suited for success with this plant type since they prefer slightly acidic conditions which makes them ideal candidates for container gardening as well!

Pomegranate ‘Granada’

Pomegranate ‘Granada’ is a flowering shrub or small tree that produces bright red fruit in the fall. 

These fruits are edible and can be eaten fresh, juiced or made into jams and juices. Pomegranate is native to Iran and was cultivated in the Mediterranean region as early as the 3rd millennium BC. The pomegranate has been associated with fertility since ancient times; it’s also rich in antioxidants

Create a stunning centerpiece for your garden with your very own Christmas tree using our foolproof guide to growing and maintaining this festive favorite. Whether you are planting a sapling or looking to transplant a mature tree, we’ve got you covered.

Paperbark Maple (Acer griseum)

This ornamental tree is a great choice for shady areas, and you can count on it to grow quickly. It has delicate bark that peels away in papery flakes, revealing the green leaves beneath. 

In spring and summer, the leaves are a deep green; in fall they turn bright red (a.k.a., “scarlet”) with hints of orange or yellow around the edges. Planting one of these beauties will add an instant pop of color to your yard or garden!

Characteristics of Paperbark Maple (Acer griseum)

BarkPaperbark Maple has distinctive cinnamon-colored bark that peels away in thin, papery strips.
FoliageThe leaves are dark green and have a tri-lobed shape. In the fall, they turn shades of orange and red.
FlowersThe plant produces small, inconspicuous yellow-green flowers in the spring.
SizePaperbark Maple typically grows to be 20-30 feet tall and 15-25 feet wide.
HardinessPaperbark Maple is hardy in USDA zones 4-8.
Sun NeedsIt grows best in full sun to partial shade.
Soil NeedsThe plant prefers well-draining soil that is slightly acidic.
Water NeedsPaperbark Maple needs regular watering, especially during hot, dry periods.
MaintenanceThe plant requires minimal pruning, but dead or damaged branches should be removed as needed.

Note: This table provides an overview of the characteristics of Paperbark Maple (Acer griseum), including its distinctive bark, foliage, flowers, size, hardiness, sun and soil needs, water needs, and maintenance requirements.

Nandina domestica Gulf Stream

The Nandina domestica Gulf Stream is a dwarf cultivar of Nandina domestica. The plant is native to China and Japan, where it grows in moist areas along stream banks and ponds. 

It produces beautiful red berries during the winter months, which add color and texture to an outdoor space. This evergreen shrub is hardy in USDA zones 5-9 (see below for more information about USDA zones).

Christmas is the perfect time to spruce up your garden and our tips for Christmas gardening will help you achieve just that. From choosing the right plants to making the most of the winter weather, we’ll guide you through each step of the way.


Cotoneaster is a great plant to use as a groundcover, hedge or border. It’s evergreen and blooms with coral berries in late spring. 

The flowers are followed by red fruit that ripen in fall. When planted in full sun, it will grow up to 2 feet high and wide; but if you’re growing cotoneaster under partial shade, it can reach 4 feet high and wide. Cotoneaster is drought tolerant and prefers well-drained soil.

Crimson Pygmy Barberry (Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea ‘Crimson Pygmy’)

Shrubby and compact, this Berberis thunbergii var. atropurpurea ‘Crimson Pygmy’ is a good choice for an outdoor space because it’s easy to grow and maintains its stunning red berries year-round. 

The plant will eventually reach up to 2 feet in height and half that in width, making it perfect for smaller spaces or those with limited sunlight exposure. Although it’s generally considered a subshrub (a shrub that grows shorter than 3 feet), this variety can often grow taller than 3 feet if given enough light and water. 

You can use it in containers as well as ground landscaping, making this plant a versatile addition to any garden bed or patio planter box!

Surprise the gardener in your life with unique Christmas gift ideas from our guide on 10 beautiful and unique Christmas gifts for the gardener. Whether they are a seasoned green-thumb or just starting out, we’ve got something for everyone. From innovative tools to gardening books, your gift will be much appreciated.

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)

The Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus) is a good choice for a sunny spot in your yard. The bush, which typically grows to be five to six feet tall, can get even larger depending on the variety. 

It’s also an excellent plant for hedging or creating privacy barriers, and it attracts butterflies and birds alike with its colorful flowers.

The Rose of Sharon produces large heart-shaped leaves that are glossy green on top and light green underneath. 

They’re arranged alternately along the stems; when they die off in the winter months they will turn brown but they won’t drop off unless there’s severe frost damage or drought conditions have been prolonged over several weeks (this means you’ll need to water every day during hot summers). 

It blooms from summer through fall with clusters of white or pink flowers that resemble Hibiscus flowers on steroids: each bloom has five petals fused together into one large “cup” shape—and each cup can be up to three inches across!

Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia)

The Crape Myrtle is a great choice for any outdoor space. It is a shrub or small tree that grows up to 20 feet high and has glossy, dark green leaves. 

The flowers are pink, red, or white and fragrant. They bloom from late spring through early summer; but if you don’t want your crape myrtle blooming during this time period, it’s easy enough to prune them off!

This plant can be used as a screen in the front yard or planted along your driveway for added privacy. 

They are also beautiful when planted in containers on patios, balconies or decks so they can be enjoyed up close without having to navigate through the rest of your garden bed plants first before getting close enough see all those lovely colors up close!

Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa Macra ‘aureola’)

If you’re looking for a plant that will add color, texture and interest to your outdoor space without much fuss, Japanese forest grass is the perfect choice. It’s a low-maintenance perennial with long slender leaves that rise above the ground in late spring. 

The flowers are small and form at the base of each leaf. This variety is bright green and grows up to 10 inches tall with blooms that appear in summer or fall depending on conditions.

Japanese forest grass tolerates drought conditions well and can adapt to almost any soil type as long as it gets enough sun—it’s also deer resistant! Planting this specimen in partial shade instead of full sun will help extend its growing season as well as keep its foliage from turning brown during hot weather months (or when exposed directly under lamps).

Variegated Solomon’s Seal, Polygonatum Odoratum “Variegatum”

Variegated Solomon’s seal is a perennial ground cover that blooms in spring. This shade-loving plant prefers light to partial sun and will thrive in most soils, including clay and sandy soils. 

The variegated Solomon’s seal can be used as an accent plant or planted alone to create a lush green mat of foliage. 

It makes a beautiful addition to your landscape year-round with its lush leaves, attractive flowers and interesting seed capsules that resemble pine cones.

These Plants Are A Good Way To Create A Festive Outdoor Space

Japanese maples are a popular choice for creating an autumnal look in your garden. They have beautiful leaves that turn red, orange and yellow as the weather cools.

Chinese Fringe Flower (Loropetalum) is another great choice for decorating your outdoor space at this time of year. This flowering shrub has bright flowers that attract butterflies and bees to your garden all summer long!

Sheperd’s Purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) is a very versatile plant that will grow well in almost any type of soil or location. It blooms throughout most of spring and summer with velvety white flowers that attract pollinators like butterflies and bees to the garden!

Loropetalum chinense Purpureum Group are very fragrant flowers which make them ideal for adding scent to your garden this fall/winter season. 

The plant itself produces large clusters of purple bell shaped flowers which contrast beautifully against green foliage during these colder months when many other plants may be dying back from lack of light or nutrients due to cold temperatures outside! 

This makes them great candidates for adding color where none might normally exist within an area.”


If you’re looking to bring some festive cheer to your outdoor space, I hope these suggestions have been helpful. I’d love to hear what plants and flowers work well for you in the comments below!

Further Reading

Here are more articles you may find useful for creating a festive outdoor space:

Holiday Plants: A Complete Guide: Looking for the best plants to use for the holidays? Check out this guide for tips on choosing and caring for holiday plants like poinsettias and Christmas cactus.

6 Must-Have Plants to Transform Any Outdoor Space: Want to transform your outdoor space into something special? Learn about 6 plants that can help you create a beautiful, inviting outdoor oasis.

25 Best Patio Plants and Outdoor Flowers for Your Backyard: Whether you have a small balcony or a spacious backyard, find the perfect plants for your outdoor space with this comprehensive list of 25 best patio plants.


Q: What are the best plants for a festive outdoor space during the holidays?

A: Some of the best plants include poinsettias, holly, Christmas cactus, amaryllis, and paperwhites.

Q: What are some tips for growing a healthy Christmas tree?

A: Make sure to choose a healthy tree to begin with, water it regularly, and keep it sheltered from harsh winds and extreme temperatures.

Q: How can I decorate my garden for Christmas?

A: Use lights to decorate trees and shrubs, add festive decorations like wreaths and garlands, and consider planting seasonal plants like holly and poinsettias.

Q: What are some outdoor plants that can survive the winter?

A: Some examples of outdoor plants that can survive the winter include holly, witch hazel, winter jasmine, and snowdrops.

Q: What are some low-maintenance plants for my outdoor space?

A: Some low-maintenance plants to consider include succulents, lavender, and hostas.