‘Tis the season to talk about taking care of our live Christmas trees (unless you are like one of my colleagues who said to me recently “I just wish I could keep a fake tree already decorated in the closet so all I have to do is pull it out and it’s ready to go!”).
If you do enjoy having a real tree, there are a few things you can do to keep your tree in good shape throughout the season.
And remember that Christmas trees can be a fire hazard!
- When selecting a pre-cut Christmas tree make sure it is fresh. Avoid any trees that have brittle or brown needles, and make sure that the cut end of the tree is still sticky and moist with sap.
- Cut off 1 to 2 inches of the trunk before setting it in a bucket with cold water. Keep in a cool place for a few days as this will encourage the tree to take up water. Refill the water as necessary.
- When you bring the tree inside place it in a tree stand with at least 1 quart capacity (or keep in in the bucket and use some rocks around the trunk to keep it steady). Check it every day and keep the water full!
- If your tree dries out and starts to lose needles, the trunk should be re-cut to encourage it to start taking up water again. This can be difficult but is the only way to keep your tree from shedding needles. Remember, keep the water full.
Additional blog posts on Christmas Cacti and Poinsettias