For the last few years, we have used dried citrus fruit slices in Christmas decorations around the house as well as apple slices. They have made beautiful decorations but recently in the stores instead of just slices I started to see whole oranges dried and thought how great these would look to decorate a garland on the bannisters in our house. So here’s how to dry whole oranges or other citrus fruit and a suggestion of how to use them to decorate your home.

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.

Read our how-to dry citrus fruit slices and make your own.

How to Dry Whole Oranges for Christmas Decorations

We have included affiliate links to products and resources we recommend.

I love creating our own homemade decorations and one of the aims has been to make as much of the items around the house as possible myself – or at least adapt them to be more than just a store-bought item.

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.

So this Christmas I was inspired by the decorations and wreaths that I saw in stores which contained whole dried oranges (although I found that a lot of them were plastic – something we are trying to avoid in the home) so I set about creating my own to use to decorate for the festive season.

Materials need to Dry your own Whole Oranges

Oranges – mine were a mix of satsumas and clementines before popular and easily available at this time of the year.

Baking Tray with liner if you don’t want to ruin it!

Knife and cutting board

How to Dry Whole Oranges Step by Step

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
  1. With an orange held between your thumb and first finger make a cut in the skin about 1/4 of an inch (0.5cm) from the top straight around to 1/4 inch from the bottom (0.5cm).
  2. Repeat this slice around the orange.
    Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
  3. Once you have between 6 and 10 slices around the orange place it on a baking tray with lining (if you don’t want to ruin your baking tray).
  4. Place in the centre of the oven at your oven’s lowest temperature.
    Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
  5. It will take between 4 and 8 hours to dry out the oranges.
  6. When they are dry the insides will be dehydrated and the skins will darken.

Find more ideas for Natural Decorations that you could make for Christmas.

Ideas for Using the Dried Whole Oranges in Christmas Decorations

I have used the oranges that I dried to attach to a garland which I’ve hung from the bannister in our house.

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.

To make one similar you will need:

A 9ft artificial garland or longer if needed

Selection of pine cones – you could paint some of these like we have

Strand of white battery operated lights

Cinnamon sticks

Whole dried oranges – see the end of the place where you can order these from if you lack time

Florist wire

Stockings – full instructions on making them can be found here

Invisible thread

To make your Garland

  1. Attach your stockings to the bannisters.
  2. Lay out the garland on the floor and wrap the lights around it.
    Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
  3. Using fishing wire hang the garland (it needed my husband and myself to do this).
  4. Take your pinecones and using the florist wire wrap it around hiding it in the pine cone parts.
  5. Then attach the pinecones throughout the garland.
  6. Attach the cinnamon sticks in a similar way.
  7. Take your whole dried orange and poke the florist wire through the orange and twist at the bottom to secure it.
  8. Take another piece of florist wire and attach the orange to the garland.
    Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
  9. When you have your pine cones, cinnamon sticks and oranges in place position the lights so that they can be seen and arrange the garland to conceal any obvious florist wire.

At the end of the festive season – you may need to remove the whole oranges if you will be storing the Christmas Decorations where they could get damp and they could then be placed in a handmade wooden decorative bowl with some cinnamon sticks, pine cones, and star anise in a potpourri.

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.

Love the Idea but Lack the Time this Year

You can dry orange slices in just over an hour using our microwave method – check it out!

If you love this idea and want to try it but lack the time this year – save this idea to your Pinterest board and head to Etsy where you can buy dried oranges to make your own Christmas Decorations if you want.

Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.

More Natural Ornaments and Decorations to make for Christmas

collage of an orange pomander craft for kids to create tea light holders for Christmas
Apple Star Ornaments - natural decorations you can make at home with kids to decorate the Christmas Tree
Fifteen Beautiful Rustic Pine Cone Crafts to create this year for Christmas and Winter Decorations to bring the outside in for your home.
Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
Full step-by-step instructions on how to dry your own whole oranges to create natural Christmas decorations for the home.
Author
Cerys Parker

Cerys is a marine biologist, environmental educator, high school teacher and mum. Realising that life doesn't have to be put on hold and you don't just have to survive whilst the kids are young she shares ideas to inspire you to LIVE with the kids, with activities to do together, recipes to cook and enjoy and family travel to make memories to last a lifetime.

2 Comments

  1. How do you know if they are dried out long enough? I’ve had them in the dehydrated overnight and most of the next day. The skins are darkened but the flesh is still sticky. I’m worried they will rot in a couple of weeks. Ewww. I want to use them on wreaths that I am selling. Thanks! S

    1. Hi, once removed and the skins have dried out they continue to dry further in the air. We’ve had ours in a bowl for almost 2 years after being on a garland in the hallway and no mould at all.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.