Fall is upon us and this a good time to talk about how to preserve pinecones.
Our neighbors have a pine tree, and it dropped its pine ones. Knowing that I love decorating and crafting they asked if I would like them? Of course, I’d love these! So, we grabbed them all and can’t believe how many I brought home.
If you follow Cloches & Lavender you are aware I enjoy decorating with pieces from nature in our home. Especially for the fall and holiday seasons so sharing how to preserve pine cones is a must.
Preserved Acorns In Décor
By the way, you may enjoy this post. Here I share my love of acorns. I have a collection of 100’s and I share how to clean and preserve acorns. My collection is going on 10 years now. So, it should be no surprise I’d share how to preserve pinecones.
Also, I have a home tour coming on September 30th and you will see my large collection of preserved acorns and preserved pinecones. I also enjoy decorating with walnuts, dried artichokes to name a few. Using pieces from nature speaks volumes of embracing fall and the beauty it offers for home décor and crafts.
You my also enjoy seeing how I incorporate dried oranges into my fall and holiday décor. Besides being pretty dried oranges are natures gift. When oranges are dried they smell and mixed with pine cones for example, are beautiful as well.
I share how to make dried orange slices and clementine. I also share how to use dried oranges when decorating the home seasonally. By the way, you will see pinecones used here too. Be sure to take a look for some inspiration.
Incidentally, how to preserve pinecones is easy to do and well worth the effort.
Cleaning The Fresh Cones
First step, cleaning the pinecones to preserve using dish soap. I made sure to remove any pine needles and other debris, this didn’t take long.
Because I have a large sink in my laundry room, cleaning the pinecones before beginning to preserve them was an easy job. I filled the sink with warm water and 1/4 teaspoon of dish soap and added the cones to clean. After the soapy water covers the cones to preserve let them soak for half an hour.
By the way, I suggest wearing rubber gloves to preserve fresh pine cones. They are filled with sap and are quite sticky.
In the meantime grab a large towel.
Letting The Fresh Pinecones Dry
Remove the pinecones from the soapy water and rinse well. Here, using a large bath towel, I let the the cones dry overnight before I begin the baking process to preserve them. Also, before settling in for the evening, turn the pinecones over so the other side air dries so they will be ready to preserve.
Adding The Pinecones to The Oven to Reopen
Preheat the oven to 200 degrees. Next, using baking pans, line them with parchment paper before adding the the cones for this easy craft to preserve. I used four large baking pans because in total we had 78 cones.
Because the fresh pinecones are going in the oven to preserve, this is when they will open again. As a result of the pinecones opening, it’s important to leave room in between each cone to account for them getting wider. Incidentally, I advise beginning slow with the first sheets. For my first baking sheet I set my timer for 15 minutes. I did this because, I didn’t want them to burn. So, to be on the safe side I wanted to see how the preserving process was going to work.
Since I have so many pinecones to preserve, I knew I was going to do the baking process six times. So, after the first round of baking, I began setting my timer for a half an hour. Now I knew this was the perfect amount of time for the pinecones to completely open. During this process it’s quite amazing seeing the cones close and open again.
This is also why I say take advantage of nature when decorating your home for fall and the holiday season. It’s not only free but is truly amazing to see.
Letting The Pine Cones Cool To Add To Home Décor
After taking the pinecones from the oven, I did add parchment paper to a cooling rack. Here, I let them cool as the next parchment paper lined baking sheet was in the oven.
If you don’t want to preserve pinecones, purchase them HERE.
Lastly, I didn’t feel it to be necessary to spray my pine cones with poly or a sealer. I love the natural look of nature. Spraying them is optional.
Here, you can see the preserved pinecones I added to an antique French crate for a natural touch.
I hope you enjoyed learning how to preserve pinecones and will think about trying it for your fall and Christmas décor. Do you enjoy decorating with pieces found outside too? It’s the best because pieces found in the year are free! Will you use pinecones in your decor?
Preserving Pine Cones
- large towel, oven, dish soap, sink, cooling rack, parchment paper