Many of us are itching to get the tree up... if it's not up already! A real Christmas tree will blend beautifully into a home with reclaimed wood furniture, continuing the rustic theme. But if you're planning on a real Christmas tree it's a little harder to judge exactly when it is the right time to put it up. You don't want to miss out on the magical build-up to Christmas but at the same time, you don't want it to be bare, dropping needles all over the floor and your rustic furniture by Christmas eve. In this blog, we look at how best to treat your tree so it lasts as long as possible over the festive period.
Choose the right tree
A healthy fresh-cut tree should last around four to five weeks. Many trees available to buy are ones that are described as needle retaining - but how long they will last depends on when it was cut. If at all possible you should buy your tree from a place that cuts it down as you're there - of course, this is not always possible and you will only have the sellers word for when it was cut.
Tips to help you know if your tree is fresh
- Gently pull your hand along a branch - only the odd needle should fall.
- Tap the entire tree on the ground to see how many needles fall off.
- The needles of a fresh tree should snap in half and should not be pliable.
- The tree should have a fresh and fragrant scent.
Before you take the tree into your home, cut off 2.5cms from the bottom of the trunk as this will allow it to take up more water. The tree should ideally be placed in a leak-proof stand - it can drink 1-2 litres of water a day!
The best position for your Christmas tree
Ideally, you want to avoid placing your Christmas tree in direct sunlight or near an open fire or radiator. Whilst a real tree next to a roaring open fireplace feels festive and cosy, it will really shorten the tree's life.
If your tree is a bit tall then cut some off from the bottom - you may be able to use any offcuts to make a festive display down the middle of your rustic dining table, as part of a table setting or on an industrial sideboard.
It may be worth moving your furniture around to get the tree in just the right position, maybe you have the ideal spot but a wooden side table or small armchair is in the way. A small piece of furniture can easily be moved out of the room temporarily to make room.
When Christmas is over and it's time to take it down, look at responsible ways to dispose of it. Your local council will be able to help with this, or see our blog How your Christmas tree can live on after the holidays for some other great and eco-friendly suggestions.
What side of the fence to you sit on when it comes to real or imitation Christmas trees? We'd love to hear what you prefer. Leave a comment below to start the conversation!