Friday, December 06, 2013

GMG's Friday Find: Pick the Perfect Christmas Tree This Year

It seems everyone has some kind of Christmas Tree tradition, even if it's unpacking an artificial tree to decorate and then spraying the room with pine scent.

If part of your tradition is hunting down that perfect live tree, you may suffer from 'tree confusion', a common ailment that afflicts many, no matter the years you've been hunting.

Here is a guide from The Davey Tree Expert Company to help you choose the perfect tree this year that will satisfy everyone and bring lasting memories from decorating to enjoying through the holiday.


First, be aware of trees that have been cut too soon and not watered enough.  To check for freshness run your fingers along the needles, grab the branches and bounce the tree a little.  If few needles fall then you've picked a winner.

Each variety of Christmas tree has its own personality.  Here are some pros and cons of some of the most popular species.

Douglas Fir - While not a true fir, the Douglas Fir is one of the most popular Christmas trees.  The dark green or blue-green colored needles are soft to the touch and radiate out in all directions from the branch, creating a very full-looking tree.  The Douglas also has a sweet, not overwhelming scent.

Colorado Blue Spruce - Spruces have a beautiful shape and color, and the Colorado blue spruce is an incredibly symmetrical and stately tree.  This tree is also one of the best for needle retention.

Scotch and Eastern White Pine - All varieties of pine have excellent needle retention and a full look, however, their flexible branches struggle to hold heavy ornaments.  If you have special heirloom ornaments that could fall and break, skip this tree.  The main difference between the scotch and white pine is their fragrance.  Scotch trees have a long-lasting aroma while the Eastern white pines have almost no fragrance.  This is a good tree for those who have fragrance sensitivities.

Balsam, Fraser and Canaan Firs - These trees are more expensive than pines because they grow slower, however the extra expense may be worth it.  They have stiff branches that hold heavy decorations, their needles won't shed even if it misses a watering or two, and the scent will make the whole house smell like Christmas.  Balsams are perfect for tree toppers while the Fraser firs are more compact. 

Living Christmas Trees - These trees come with a root ball for planting the tree after the holiday season.  Consider the native conifer tree that will thrive in your area when planted.  Keep in mind these trees must be kept in a garage or shed until the ground has thawed enough for planting, and watering the tree is essential before and during the planting process.

As with all Christmas Trees, watering prevents the needles from drying and dropping and also helps maintain fragrance.  Trees may drink up to several quarts a day, so check the water level daily.

Live Christmas trees truly represent the scent and spirit of the holiday. We'd love to hear which Christmas tree makes it into your home this year.  Happy Christmas tree hunting!

~Peggy
Garden Media Group

No comments: