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Tree with red and white presents under the potted Christmas tree
Try one of these beautiful living alternatives to an artificial festive tree.


Living Christmas

Traditional artificial Christmas trees are reliable props that you can pull out of storage year after year, and they can be beautiful additions to a festive scene. However, if you’re looking to change up your home decor style this year, these alternative tree ideas are quirky, fun and modern options to have you celebrating the holidays in style. Better yet, they can all be kept in pots, giving you a living tree to keep beyond Boxing Day. Add some Christmas decorations and ornaments, and your festive decor is sorted!


One of the most iconic New Zealand trees and the quintessential Kiwi Christmas tree. This species not only provides natural red decorations in summer, it’s also a hardy native tree and grows well in a large pot, making it ideal indoors over the festive period. Add a couple of lightweight gold ornaments to its branches, pop some Christmas presents under it, and you’re ready to celebrate.

Citrus tree

Fresh, vibrant and fun, a citrus tree is a quirky way to add welcome cheer to the home and is a cute alternative Christmas tree idea. Find one that is fruiting for a display of natural baubles, or add a couple of decorations of your own.

A citrus tree sits in a white pot surrounded by presents with yellow lemons growing

Radiata pine

The most traditional tree of the bunch, this is a classic evergreen pine with a look and smell that evokes Christmas like no other. Add tinsel, a tree topper and maybe even some Christmas lights, and you’re all set. Post December 25, keep it outside in a pot until the next festive season.

A Radiata pine sits on top of a mound of presents with Christmas decorations in its’ branches 

Olive tree

A symbol of peace and happiness that makes an ideal pared-back, modern-looking alternative Christmas tree. Happy in a pot, it can be enjoyed year after year.

An Olive tree sits in a white pot, with gold baubles on its’ branches and presents surrounding the pot

Ideas for plant gifts this Christmas

1. For a teacher: Calathea

This vibrant and colourful beauty beats a bouquet of flowers – and lasts a lot longer.

Calathea sits in a white pot on a wooden desk

2. For Mum: Anthurium

With its long-lasting heart-shaped flowers, this house plant will show her just how much you love her.

An Anthurium sits in a white pot in front of a white, wooden wall with red flowers

3. For a son or daughter: ZZ plant

It takes a lot to kill this perennial, so it’s great for children who’ve recently flown the coop.

A close up image of a ZZ plant in a red pot

4. For a friend: Variegated rubber plant

Loved for its pink and green camo-like leaves, this retro plant is a cool choice for a house plant hipster.

A rubber plant sits in a black pot with green and pink leaves 

5. Flatmate: Succulent

An ability to survive in the toughest environments makes these attractive, easy-care plants a great gift for a plant novice.

Three different types of succulents sit in white pots in front of blue backgrounds

Get set to grow your garden further.

Explore the full plant range at a Bunnings near you.


Photo Credit: Reuben Looi, Brigid Arnott, Getty Images


Health & Safety

Please make sure you use all equipment appropriately and safely when following the advice in these D.I.Y. videos. You need to be familiar with how to use equipment safely and follow the instructions that came with the equipment. If you are unsure, you may feel it is safest to consult an expert, such as the manufacturer or an expert Bunnings Team Member.

Grave health hazards are linked to asbestos, which may be in homes built up to 1990. Health hazards may result from exposure to lead-based paints in older materials and copper chromium arsenic (CCA) treated timber. For information on the dangers of asbestos, lead-based paint and CCA treated timber and tips for dealing with these materials contact your local council's Environmental Health Officer. You can also use a simple test kit from Bunnings to indicate the presence of lead-based paint.