Winter Solstice Orange Garland

By The Petite Plantation - December 01, 2019

Make your own Winter Solstice Orange Garland!
I absolutely love this magical time of the year as the days continue to grow shorter before the Winter Solstice. I love playing in the snow with my wild boys, making delicious homemade goodies, and crafting indoors on the bitter cold days.

To celebrate the Winter Solstice, I have made an Orange Garland and today I want to share it with you! And although I am sure the boys would have rather I made Cranberry Orange bread with these oranges, I am a maker, and makers gonna make!

What does Orange Slice Garland represent?

It's common to see dried orange slices strung together to decorate the home or tree during the holidays because they are a representation of the sun and the returning light or when the days begin to grow longer after the winter solstice.

And since I totally killed Christmas, I want to start creating more fun traditions with the boys! I'll explain more about how I killed Christmas another day hah!

How to Make a DIY Orange Garland for Winter Solstice

Creating your own Orange Garland is incredibly easy if you have a dehydrator. Simply slice them up into 1/4 inch cookies and stick them in your dehydrator until they are, well, dehydrated!

We don't have a dehydrator, so we placed them on a piece of parchment paper and baked them at about 175F in our hot oven for a couple of hours. If you have a normal oven that is nearly accurate, I would guess the temperature you would need is about 200F.

You could also pat your oranges slices with a paper towel to lessen the drying time. I wish I had thought of this before making my own garland!

The key to using your oven to dehydrate orange slices is flipping them often and making sure your oven isn't too hot. If it is too hot, you'll bake them, and the sugars in the oranges with caramelize and they will become more brown than sunny.

Once they have dried, they will look something like this. Let them cool and string them together. 

You could use twine or a cotton string, we used cotton yarn I had on hand and it is biodegradable which I value.

Stringing the yarn through the same slice twice, or in the front and in from the back, helps your garland lay flat when you hang it on your wall or fireplace mantle.

There you have it! A decoration or tradition to invite and celebrate the returning of the light during the Winter Solstice!

And, after the holidays you can reuse your Orange Garland!

  • You could add these to a jar of vinegar to make your own All-Purpose Cleaner. 
  • You could place them in a jar and reuse the garland next year. 
  • You could even chop them up to make an Herbal Tea! 
  • You can add them to a simmering pot of water with some cinnamon to fill your home with a festive aroma! 
  • You can save them to use as a garnish on a cake or dessert!
  • Slather them in peanut butter and seeds and hang it in the garden for the birds!

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