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Tabletop Tree

Bring fresh outdoor greenery indoors with this miniature Christmas tree.

Tabletop Christmas tree with decorations.

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

A few hours

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Durable lawn bag or plastic sheeting
  • Duct tape or packing tape
  • Gravel
  • Yard work gloves
  • Shears
  • Lopper


  • 12-quart steel bucket, #89804
  • Small pine tree (Colorado blue spruce shown)

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

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Step 1

Line the bucket with plastic from a lawn bag or plastic sheeting. Check the folds to make sure none will allow water to seep down the sides of the bucket, and then trim the plastic to within 1 inch of the top of the bucket. Tape the top edges to the bucket so that no tape extends over the lip of the bucket. Take care to make certain the plastic will hold water without leaking and that it follows the inside shape of the bucket.

Step 2

Select a tree about 55 inches tall (measured from the tip to bottom of the pot) in a container that fits inside the bucket. If the container fits but the bottom tree branches are too low, add gravel to the bottom to raise the container enough for the branches to clear the lip of the bucket.

Step 3

If the container is slightly too large for the bucket, lift the root ball free of the container and trim just enough for it to fit snugly inside the bucket. Again, add enough gravel to the bottom to raise the branches over the lip of the bucket and pack gravel around the edges to hold it in place.

Step 4

For trees with a large container and root ball, use loppers to cut the trunk at ground level. Trim enough branches to create 12 inches of trunk. Center the trunk in the bucket and add enough gravel to hold the tree steady.

Step 5

Regardless of whether you use Step 2, 3, or 4, water lightly as needed. Make sure the water level does not touch the tape.