Garland with dried fruit and other nature finds is a great holiday project, fun DIY crafts for kids or nature mobile ideas for any time of the year! (Nature garland or Christmas garland with fruit is so beautiful!) Learn how to make fruit garland (aka: dehydrated citrus garland), how to make pinecone garland with dried fruit, get natural garland ideas, and how to make dried fruit Christmas garland or a nature garland mobile for your homeschool classroom decorations (like we did and it lasts a long time)!
How To Make Garland with Nature Finds (or a Nature Mobile Project)
Nature garland isn’t just for the holiday season! Nature mobile crafts and dried fruit garlands are beautiful to hang any time of year. We made our easy mobile art project for holiday decor and then hung it in our classroom from a branch the rest of the year! It’s an easy project for fall or for holiday crafts!
How do you make dried fruit garland?
Dried DIY fruit garland Christmas decorations can be made out of drying fruit and anything you can find in nature and other natural elements and string together on a natural twine.
Items for Making A Dried Fruit Garland or Dried Fruit Hanging Decorations Like Nature Mobiles:
- Evergreen branches (or even a wire rack for hanging)
- Various citrus fruit / fruit slices (thin slices with small holes)
- Dried lemons
- Dried limes
- Dried peaches
- Dried oranges (dried orange slices from whole oranges / navel oranges)
- Star anise
- Dehydrated fruit mix
- Dried apples
- Dried apricots
- Dried pears
- Bay leaves
- Magnolia leaves
- Twine or fishing line
- Yarn needle / large needle
- Natural wooden beads like these
If you want a scented garland, make it a dried fruit and cinnamon garland (with cinnamon sticks hanging with your dry fruits garland).
Get the full dried fruit garland DIY instructions, including how to string dried fruit garland, below. KEEP SCROLLING for the DIY mobile craft / nature garland directions! (You can also use this method for making natural product holiday wreaths / Christmas wreaths for holiday gifts, too!)
ALSO: If you’re wondering how to make a mobile with sticks, this will tell you how. We hung our nature garland on a grapevine from my great-grandmother’s property to display in our homeschool room! (It makes really cool natural art mobile ideas!)
Dried Orange Garland Meaning
There are many different stories behind the orange garland meaning (or dried citrus garland meaning). In some cultures, the garland is seen as a symbol of good luck and prosperity. In others, it is seen as a symbol of the sun and warmth. Some also say that the oranges represent the kindness of Saint Nicholas (aka: St. Nick or Santa Claus). For some, money was tight and items like oranges were only received at Christmas or special occasions. Many dried orange slices to remember the scent of a smell that reminds them of Christmas.
The dried orange garland is a popular holiday decoration in many parts of the world. The oranges are dried and then strung together to create a beautiful and festive garland. The garland can be used to decorate homes, office, or even as a gift.
No matter what the meaning is, the garland is a beautiful way to decorate for the holidays or any time of the year!
How do you hang dried fruit?
To hang dried fruit you will need:
- Twine or yarn
- Large needle with large eye opening
- Doweling, branch, or twig
- Dried fruit with holes
Tie a piece of twine or onto the dowel or stick to make a hanger. Thread the twine or yarn through the needle and then thread through your dried fruit. You can make a long fruit garland or you can put just a few dry fruits on multiple pieces of twine and hang the down (vertically) from the branch.
We made one long fruit dried garland and hung it on our branch, attached at either end. Then, we hung pinecones vertically hanging down. (See full directions below.) Play around with it and see how you like it.
MORE NATURE CRAFTS:
How long does dried fruit garland last?
You may be surprised to know that your dried fruit garland can last for up to two years! Keep your natural fruit garland in a cool, dry place (away from the sun) and somewhere they won’t attract bugs or critters! The color will eventually fade and the fruits and garland items may become brittle the longer they sit, so you will eventually need to make a new one.
(Maybe that’s an annual project for next year — make new festive garlands every year!)
Or, after you use it for the holidays, use this dried fruit garland for birds or other animals — but only if you haven’t used any paint or craft spray on them!
And, as we mentioned, you can also hang it on multiple twigs for mobile craft ideas or if you’re learning how to make a hanging mobile art. (DEFINITELY add this to your ideas for mobiles crafts / hanging mobile ideas for classroom, Waldorf fall crafts, fall mobile ideas, or if you’re learning how to make fall art!)
Read on for how to make dried fruit garland!
How do you make dried fruit Christmas garland?
If you’re wondering how do you make dried fruit for Christmas decorations, how do you dry oranges for decorations, or how to make citrus ornaments for hanging dried orange slices on the Christmas tree (another fun idea for dried oranges for holiday projects!), there are different ways.
How to make dried citrus garland:
- Dry fruit in the microwave
- Dehydrated fruit garland using a dehydrator
- Make dried fruit in the oven on a baking sheet (See dried fruit Christmas garland DIY drying instructions below. This is the drying process we used for making dried orange garland in the oven.)
How do you dry apples and oranges for garland?
You can use this same process for how to make lemon garland or any dried citrus for garland, dried fruit for wreath making, or citrus ornaments. And, yes! You can even use them for dried fruit snacks!
More How To Make A Garland For Christmas (or How To Make Cranberry Garland – which makes a beautiful garland and goes nicely with the DIY dried fruit garland craft!)
Where should I put garland in my house?
- Around the front door
- On the Christmas tree
- Hanging on the fireplace mantel
- Around windows
- Draped on the stair banister
- On the balcony outside
Does dried orange garland attract bugs?
The trick to dried orange garland (or any dried fruit garland or dried citrus decorations) not attracting bugs is to make sure that they are completely dry and dehydrated before stringing the garland. We kept our dry fruit garland decoration in our homeschool classroom for over a year and it remained beautiful with no insects!
How long does real garland last?
How long real garland will last depends on what you use for your natural DIY garland. If you use fresh greenery (like evergreen garland fresh), it will last up to a month, especially if it’s in the cold (like outdoors). If you are using fresh dried fruit garland, it can last between 6 months to 2 years.
OK! Let’s get to how to make a dried fruit garland (real garland).
If you’re wondering what to do with the stuff you find on nature walks with kids, you’ll love this nature inspired garland or easy mobile for kids!
We hung our primitive dried fruit garland in our homeschool room (in the pictures) and really enjoyed it all year.
How To Make Homemade Garland (Dried Orange Slice Garland)
We make dried fruit garland as a quiet craft right before the holidays. (It’s such a nice dry fruit craft for the family to do together!)
We’ve listed what we used for our homemade garland, but you can get creative and use anything you find in nature!
We used natural twine for our DIY pine garland with dried fruit, but you can use any color of (thick) string, twine, or yarn that matches your project.
We didn’t use sugared fruit, but you can make frosted fruit garland, too, by sugaring them (especially if you are using cranberries). LEARN HOW TO SUGAR CRANBERRIES HERE
NOTE: Sugared fruit will be more likely to attract insects to your fruit garland, so consider that if you want to keep your fresh garland long term!
You can even make this a dried lemon garland or dried grapefruit garland, too.
- Natural twine
- Dried orange slices
- Dried apple slices
- Pine cones
- Other nature finds or dried fruit (optional)
- Yarn needle
- Cut a length of twine to the length of garland that you want to make.
- Thread the twine through the yarn needle. Tie a knot in one end of the twine (big enough so it doesn't slip through) and pull the knot up to the eye of the needle. You should have a single layer of thread. [To learn how to dry fruit, see the dried apples post and the dried oranges post]
- Starting with a dried orange, carefully thread the needle in one side of the orange and then out the other so that the dried orange slices hang evenly. Slide the orange close to the other end of the twine, but not at the very tip.
- Next, carefully thread the dried apple on one side and then out the other (like you did for the orange slice). Push the apple as close to the orange slice as you want. Some people like their fruit garland tight, but we like it loose and left about 4-6 inches in between each element.
- From the twine roll, cut a piece of twine about 3 inches long. Tie a pinecone onto the garland twine next to the apple.
- Repeat the same pattern, dried orange, dried apple, pinecone, until you've created the garland length you want.
- Remove yarn needle from twine and tie a knot in each end of the garland to prevent your items from sliding off.
- Carefully hang garland on Christmas tree, fireplace mantel, on stairs or even as mobile art projects on a branch (like we did), twig, or wire drying rack.
We used our homemade nature garland for our homeschool room, so we tied the pinecones hanging down from our dried fruit (instead of threading it beside the apples and oranges).
Children’s Books to Pair with This Garland Craft
- Goodbye Autumn, Hello Winter
- Night Tree
- Pick A Pine Tree
- Red & Lulu
- Foraging With Kids
- A Year Of Forest School