Choosing a Live Christmas Tree

Soon it will be time to brave the crowds and select a Christmas tree. Here are some hints to help you keep your tree attractive throughout the season.

The Right Place for a Tree

First, you should select the right place for your tree. It should be convenient to an electrical source. It also should be in a spot that does not get direct sun. Nor should it be below an air duct that will blow warm dry air on it when your heater comes on. Make sure it is not near a fireplace, and that it is out of the normal traffic patterns. Measure your ceiling height as well as the height of your tree topper. Nothing is more frustrating than having a tree that is too tall.

Choosing a Tree

Now it is time to find a tree. As you are choosing a vendor, consider these things: the unwrapped trees should be stored in the shade or in a cooler to remain fresh. The unwrapped displayed trees should be in water. A fresh tree will have soft pliable branches. Scotch, white pine, Douglas and Balsam fir have naturally good needle-holding qualities, while spruce trees tend to lose needles quickly. Run your hand through the branches. Very few needles should come off in your hand. The sap on the tree stump should be sticky and moist, not hard or caked. The vendor should make a fresh cut on the base of the tree.

Getting it Home

If you are traveling with the tree on top of your vehicle consider taking a route home that enables you to drive a little slower. The wind from driving at high speeds can dry the tree out quickly. When you get home, place the tree in a bucket of water until you are ready to set it up. After the tree is set up and decorated, make sure that you fill up the water reservoir and replenish the tree’s water daily. A properly cared-for tree should last throughout the season.

Florida Grown Trees

For the freshest Christmas tree you may decide to choose a Florida-grown tree from one of the Christmas tree farms in northeast Florida. According to the Florida Christmas Tree Association there are two Christmas Tree Farms  in the area. They are:

Rudolph’s Christmas Tree Farm 11965 O.C.Horne Road, Sanderson

Songer’s Christmas Tree Farm 5255 Carter Spencer Road, Middleburg

For more information on Florida’s Christmas tree farms go to www.flchristmastrees.com