Plant Holiday Cheer to Last All Year

Want to keep the holiday feeling in your landscape long after Christmas has passed? Check out this compact list of yuletide yard additions.

In South Texas, the list of evergreen trees you can utilize as year-round living Christmas trees is limited.

But I’ve rounded up a few I’d recommend to keep the yuletide feeling in your landscape all year through.

Arizona Cypress

The Arizona cypress is native to Texas and does well in our Central Texas limestone soils. It can be identified by its bluish-green or silvery foliage and reddish-brown bark that sheds yearly. This native Christmas tree is very drought resistant and can withstand our harsh Texas summers. It does require well-drained soils and prefers to reside in areas where it can get full sun. It grows in a pyramid shape and can be 30 to 45 feet tall with a width anywhere from 15 to 20 feet. The Arizona cypress is a beautiful tree for your landscape that you can decorate and use to celebrate the holidays every day of the year.

Aleppo Pine

The Aleppo pine is an evergreen that is well suited for the San Antonio area. As with all pines, it requires a full sun area with well drained soils. These characteristics make the Aleppo pine a great drought tolerant tree to add to your landscape. At maturity, the Aleppo pine can grow to be between 35 and 50 feet tall and have a rounded canopy with a width of 25 to 40 feet.

Italian Stone Pine/Umbrella Pine/Stone Pine

The Italian stone pine is best known for producing one of the key ingredients for pesto — yes, pine nuts come from the cones of this tree. Although it’s not native to Texas or North America, it does flourish in our area. This pine prefers well drained soils and a full sun environment. The Italian stone pine has a high drought and heat tolerance and can grow to be anywhere from 45 to 60 feet tall with a width of 35 to 45 feet. One of its most distinctive features is its symmetrical dense canopy that resembles an umbrella. This is one of the more popular living Christmas trees you can purchase in your local nursery.


Here in South Texas, we have the climate that will allow some Juniperus family members to prosper — ‘Blue Point’ in particular. This tree is very drought tolerant and requires an area with full to partial sun and well drained soils. At maturity, the ‘Blue Point’ is approximately 12 feet tall and 8 feet wide. This living Christmas tree would make a charming and festive addition to your yard.

If adding an evergreen to your yard for a pop of color or to maintain that holiday feeling 12 months of the year, consider some of these. Hardy, drought tolerant and evergreen, you can’t go wrong.

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Our Guest Authors are fantastic former SAWS employees, incredible interns and community leaders in the local landscaping world. They are all as passionate as we are about saving water with beautiful, diverse landscapes.
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