Keep it real this Christmas with our guide to choosing the best real Christmas tree for your home
In the hope that there will be more family gathered around the Christmas tree, lets make the tree a real showstopper this year. Whilst there are an array of realistic artificial trees on the market, a trip to the garden centre or Christmas tree farm, to pick up a tree, gets you in the festive mood. Plus, a fresh tree will fill your home with the unmistakable scent of pine. But before you purchase your festive fir or seasonal spruce take a look at our guide to selecting the perfect real tree.
It’s by far the most popular tree in the UK. The Nordmann fir has excellent needle retention, an even shape and a glorious glossy green colour. It is the tree of choice in many homes especially if you like to put your tree up early but still want it looking great on the big day.
If you’re looking for the nostalgic smell of Christmas, then the Norway spruce is the tree for you. It has an amazing smell and if space is an issue, these trees are slightly slimmer and taller than the Nordmann tree. Be aware the Norway spruce are prone to dropping needles.
In the UK the Christmas tree was first introduced in 1800 by the wife of King George III, Queen Charlotte, who brought the tradition from her native Germany.
The Nobel fir certainly lives up to its name as a distinguished tree. If you’re looking for a real head-turner of a tree, then the Noble fir is the one to go for. This luxurious tree has bluer foliage, elegant, tiered layers and stiff branches, great for the heavier ornaments.
If they are nurtured well, pot grown varieties will become part of the family, and can be kept for up to three years. After Christmas, simply remove the decorations and find a home for your potted tree in the garden. It’ll grow happily in its pot for twelve months, when you may need to move it to a larger pot, before bringing it back inside for Christmas.
Top tips for selecting a tree
- Before you leave the house measure the space where you plan to display your tree – we can all let our imaginations run wild, but both the ceiling height and width of the space are important factors when choosing a tree.
- Make sure the tree you choose is a healthy deep green with no brown needles. If the needles are dropping before you even get it home, it’s a sign that the tree isn’t fresh.
- Not only can’t you see the true shape of the tree if its pre-wrapped in netting but if a tree is left bound, air cannot circulate meaning it will decompose much faster.
- To keep your tree looking its best, keep it away from heat sources and use a Christmas tree stand to keep it topped up with water. By keeping your tree hydrated you will ensure it looks great right through to twelfth night.
- Remember to recycle your tree at the end of the festive season. Many local councils offer a recycling service. You may also find that your local zoo/animal park will take them as enrichment for the animals. Pre-loved trees are even used to make jumps for racecourses!
It may seem more wasteful to buy a real tree when an artificial one can be used for many years, but…
It is estimated that a real tree uses ten times fewer materials and five times less energy compared to artificial trees.
They are completely biodegradable, recyclable and compostable.
Real trees are also a renewable source, at least one tree will be planted for each tree that is harvested.