“O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree, How lovely are your branches!” At least for a time, right? The minute you get that big fir inside your home, the decay begins. So how can you stretch a Christmas tree’s beauty? No one wants a living room littered with pine needles. Especially not as you’re opening presents. Let alone the fire hazards a dry tree poses. So, how to make a Christmas tree last longer? Turns out, there are some tricks you can use to extend the life of your tree.
How To Make A Christmas Tree Last Longer
“The first and most important part is the initial purchase of a high quality Christmas tree,” says Arthur from Christmas Tree Brooklyn, a tree company in New York, when it comes to making a Christmas tree last longer. “Before bringing the tree home you want to ensure that the tree receives a “fresh cut” at the base which is cutting off the bottom one inch of the tree trunk, this allows the pores of the tree to open up in order to absorb water.” You can either ask your tree vendor to give it a quick trim or do it yourself with a saw at home.
“Once the tree is home, you want to make sure you don’t put the tree next to any direct heat sources such as radiators or large windows that receive a lot of direct sunlight,” says Arthur. “Next you would want to fill the base of the tree stand with water right away after installation, the tree will absorb the water and you should check in the levels daily to make sure there is always water in the tree stand so that the tree can stay hydrated.”
Consider Your Christmas Tree Timeline
Just like a bouquet of flowers, you’re racing the clock when it comes to installing a Christmas tree. So if you want it to look its best on a given day, perhaps December 25, the closer you purchase your tree to its install date, the better.
Don’t Forget to Water Your Christmas Tree
“Displaying trees in water in a traditional reservoir type stand is the most effective way of maintaining their freshness and minimizing needle loss problems,” shares Doug Hundley, the spokesperson for Real Christmas Trees. But just filling the tree stand on the day you put it up won’t cut it, you need to maintain a constant level of water. Real Christmas Trees recommends one quart of water per inch of stem diameter. Will that require you to take a moment do some measurement math? Sure, but it’s worth it to get more bang for your Christmas tree buck. Then remember to check it if not daily, then at least weekly to maintain the proper water level.
Turn Off The Lights
Heat and dry air are not Christmas tree friends, which is ironic given how often we place them next to wood burning fires and decorate them with sometimes hot lights. If you can limit these factors, your tree will have a longer life. Real Christmas Trees suggests that real tree customers use mini lights that give off less heat and to always ALWAYS turn off the lights when not at home. Yes, the tree looks so pretty twinkling from your living room window, but to avoid fire hazards or sucking all the moisture out of the tree prematurely, go and cut the lights off.
If you follow all those tricks but still feel frustrated with the lifespan of your tree, you can always go the synthetic route. Fake Christmas trees can last forever if you take care of them. Plus, you only have to buy one once.