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Tips for Selecting a Christmas Tree

An exciting part of the holiday season is selecting and/or decorating the Christmas tree.  Many people purchase real trees and others use artificial trees.  It is really a matter of preference.  Selecting our Christmas tree each year is always a family event. We all climb into the car and go to the local tree farm with our saw in hand.  We spend lots of time wandering amongst the trees until we all agree on the “best” tree.  We look for a healthy, nicely shaped, tree that has decent height.  Listed below are some tips to help you select the right Christmas tree.


There are several things to consider when selecting your Christmas tree.

  • First, do you want a real tree or an artificial tree.  If the answer is real do you want to cut the tree or buy one that is pre-cut?

    Pros and Cons of a real tree verses an artificial tree.



Real trees have a great smell. Artificial trees can be easy to assemble and many come prelit.
Cutting down your own Christmas tree is making memories that will stay with your children forever. Branches are sturdy so ornaments will stay in place easily.
Tree farms provide a habitat for wildlife and oxygen requirements for people. It avoids the mess of needles having to be cleaned up when you take the tree down.
Most trash companies now recycle or chip the trees to make compost. It does not have to be watered.
Could be a problem for people with allergies. You do not have the smell of the holidays in your house.
Can be messy with needles dropping and it needs to be watered. You forgo the adventure involved with selecting a real tree and the memories that will be cherished for a lifetime.
Sometimes ornaments are too heavy for branches and present problems You will not have problems with allergies.
  • Determine where in your home you will display your tree so that you know the height of the ceilings

  • Depending where you are putting the tree will all four sides need to be suitable for display?  For instance, is it displayed in front of a window or is it in a corner with walls behind it?

  • Decide the appropriate height needed for your home:

    Height = (Room height minus tree topper size minus height of tree stand minus height of base or table tree is on (if applicable) plus amount of bottom of tree that is cut off.)  Note: allow 1 ft for tree topper and .5 ft for tree stand and bottom of tree cut. Let’s use the formula and fill in some numbers:

    We will assume that your room has 11 ft ceilings then
    (11 – 1 -  0.5 - 0 (no table) + 0.5 = 10 foot tree.


  • What is the shape of the tree that you want?  Large and bulky or tall and slender.  This is simply a matter of preference and space.

  • Determine the variety of tree.  This may take some research on your part again it will depend on preference.

  • Select a tree that is fresh. A fresh tree will have a good fragrance, nice color, strong branches and will retain its needles.  To check the needles take hold of a branch about six inches from the tip and run you hand over the branch allowing it to slip through your fingers. The needles should adhere to the branch and not fall off in your hand. Bump the base lightly to verify that the needles are firmly attached   If only a few drop off, the tree is fresh.  The needles should be pliable.