Tips For Selecting a Real or Artificial Christmas Tree

Whether you go for a real or artificial tree this year, below are a few tips to help you make the best choice–either way! :)

Real trees are becoming a popular choice over artificial ones, however, there are advantages and disadvantages on both sides. One isn’t necessarily better than the other as it’s a personal preference. Here are some tips on the selection process to help you decide on a real tree or an artificial one.

Real Tree

Many more people are turning to having a real Christmas tree in their homes. It’s also part of many family traditions to go looking for a tree.

Before you step out, know these facts:

– Where you tree will be displayed in your home
– How big is the space for the tree – slender tree or short and wide tree
– The maximum height with the tree topper and maximum width

Are you going to buy your tree from a nursery or a Christmas tree farm? What species do they have? The type of tree is dependent on where you live. Here in Florida, we have Red Cedar, Virginia Pine, Sand Pine, and Leyland Cypress.

To know if your Christmas tree is fresh, take a branch between your thumb and index finger and run it along the branch towards you. The needles should remain on the branch and not in your hand. The needles shouldn’t be dry or brittle. Avoid trees that have dried or dead branches. Don’t forget to check the strength of the branches especially if you have heavy ornaments. Lightly bump the tree base to see how many needles fall. If there’s a lot then you know the tree is not fresh.

Check the trunk. It should be straight. The tree should also have a nice fragrance and a nice green color. Lastly, do a walk around the tree and inspect it entirely.

Artificial Tree

Some people prefer artificial trees for convenience. Like real trees, they come in different heights, sizes and qualities. Artificial trees come in their traditional green color as well as non-traditional colors like red, white, pink, blue or clear. Some trees have lights already strung on them making it quick and easy for you to hang the ornaments and other decorations in half of the time.

Spend your money on a good quality artificial tree because you want it to last throughout the years. Poor quality trees have weak branches that can’t even hold a light ornament; empty spaces that no matter how much you try and spread the branches you can see through to the other side of the tree and it just looks fake.

Poor quality trees will also lose its artificial needles. Artificial trees are usually made with polyvinyl chloride (PVC) or polyethylene (PE). PVC is more common and the needles are softer. Quality trees uses at least two plies of PVC and are at least 10-12 micron thick.

Whether you decide on a real or artificial Christmas tree, take your time and weigh the pros and cons.

What kind of tree does your family get? Real or artificial?

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  1. Elisha on November 30, 2011 at 10:07 am

    We usually get a real tree but since I am about to have a baby we got an artificial one this year

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