The Ultimate Tropical Wedding Decor: Palm Leaves!

Take your party to the next level with this fun, in-demand trend

Updated 07/15/17

Photo by Catherine Coons

If you're saying "I do" in a tropical destination, go ahead and embrace the local flora. Well, that is if you want to stick to any kind of budget! And why not? We love tropical blooms and leaves—think palm fronds, monstera leaves, elephant ears, and more—on a beach, in lush mountain terrain, in the rice fields of Bali, and beyond. The best thing about this plant (among the many reasons to love it) is that because of the size, it can be used as a ceremony backdrop, in a flower installation above your head table, or even as a fun photo prop.

We found palms—and all of its tropical leaf friends—as small as your hand and others taller than a person (see the ceremony backdrop below). Another secret: it holds its shape, something your florist will absolutely thank you for.

But that's not all. Palm wedding décor works in so many situations thanks to the leafy green hue, a neutral in the flower world. It's the perfect base for a big installation where you're adding in tropical blooms in pinks, oranges, and yellows, tying together an otherwise interesting mix—or even as the back of a bouquet! A single monstera leaf or pair of palms can give your bridal bouquet an asymmetrical shape, all the while fusing different textures together. And don't get us started on palms on wedding cakes.

See below, but they can add texture in the form of a sugar flower, dimension as the real thing, or even an artistic touch when watercolored.

Needless to say, we're loving this trend in any and all forms. Take a peek at the photo inspiration below and start pinning what you like for your big day. And remember: You can use this trend even if you're not marrying in the tropics! We included a few pics below that took place in venues as far flung as as the mean streets of New York City. Proof that the palm is in style—anywhere.

<p>Palm Hanging Installation</p>

Photo by Les Anagnou Photographers; Design by Corfu Wedding Planner

We love that this hanging installation incorporates many trends. Palms (of course!) plus a fun quote make for party-ready decor.

<p>Bride and Groom with Palms</p>

Photo by Lauren Scotti

Looking for the perfect photo prop? We found it.

Palm-Print Chairs

Photo by Amber Schoniwitz of Schyne Weddings; Design by Moana Events

How fun are these palm–backed chairs? The fabric chair works well with the wooden table to avoid linen overkill! But that doesn’t mean you can’t use a palm napkin, too.

Photo by Samuel Goh

For their ceremony, this couple turned a covered patio into one serious canopy.

Photo by Kelsey Albright; Flowers by MV Florals; Design by Beijos Events

We’re into this garland of monstera leaves above the bar. One, because it’s the bar. And two, because some are spray-painted gold. Look how they coordinate with the stemware!

Photo by Kat Willson Photography

How modern is this statement cake? We're obsessed with the mix of cool circles and fun pink palms.

Photo by Cari Courtright; Flowers by Tumbleweed Floral Truck; Dress by Lovely Bride

Now this is a tropical wedding bouquet! The all green-color palette, mixed with different textures, makes the perfect statement.

<p>Palm Ceremony Backdrop</p>

Photo by Amber Gress Photography; Planning & Design by Jove Meyer Events; Flowers by BRRCH

Who says you can’t use palms in New York City? This couple thinks you can! They worked with planner Jove Meyer to turn The Foundry, in NYC’s neighbor Long Island City, into a tropical oasis.

Photo by Kat Willson Photography

This is our dream palm-inspired table set up, thanks to the clear base that makes the leaves look like they're floating.

Photo by Sean Cook Weddings

This mega-palm altar is simply perfection. To re-create, attach two large palm fronds to a plain altar structure. Add the sand and ocean backdrop, and you’re done.

Photo by Ben Q Photography

Invitations give your guests the first glimpse of what your wedding will look like. That’s why these water colored palms are ideal for a Hawaiian destination wedding—the message is loud and clear, just the way we like it.

Photo by Elvira Kalviste; Planning & Design by Jove Meyer Events; Flowers by Mimosa Floral Design

At an eight-person table setting, it’s nice to think about how the conversation will flow. A tall, focal point arrangement helps with that because it means other centerpieces aren’t blocking people’s faces. That’s one reason we love these elephant ears in a sleek white cylinder vase—chic and conversation-friendly!

Photo by Tara Libby Photography

These monstera leaves set a solid vase for pretty pink and red flowers.

Photo by Kat Willson Photography

This circle installation (so trendy, btw!) is covered in palms that are painted pink. Love!

Photography by Meg Smith Photography; Design by Jenna Lam Events

A neutral base lets the palm napkins and arrangements shine as the focal points of the table, while the pink flowers are proof of what a great color combo pink and green can be.

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