How to Make the Holidays More Affordable
Save on Flowers
Tips from an anonymous florist
Stretch your holiday budget with arrangements that contain greens, like fir, pine, and juniper. They’re wonderfully aromatic and seasonally appropriate, and they can be half the cost of fresh flowers, since the trees grow in most states and are therefore readily available. Plus, they will probably last around three weeks or more, compared with flowers, which wilt after five to seven days. If you want to include flowers, skip red and white ones (roses and lilies, for example)—you might pay 30 percent more in December because those are popular holiday colors. If you have your heart set on white flowers, gardenias make attractive holiday decorations. A single stem can run about $10, so buy the entire plant, which could have 10 to 12 blooms, from a nursery for around $25.
If you’re feeling crafty, head to a nursery that sells Christmas trees. You might score free greenery, because many nurseries cut off the bottoms to reduce the trees’ size. The leftover pieces can be ideal for making wreaths, centerpieces, or door decorations.