Live Christmas Tree Preparation, Set Up and Care
The Christmas Tree is the focal point of your indoor holiday decorations. A live Christmas tree can bring warmth to your living room and leaves the house with the rich inviting smells of the season. Choosing and caring for a live tree takes just a little planning and maintenance. Here are some helpful tips to choose, set up and keep your tree thriving throughout the holidays.
Christmas Tree Preparation Tips
Proper Christmas tree preparation begins before choosing your tree and bringing it home. Have the measurements of your home (floor to ceiling) to make sure of the maximum tree height you can accommodate. Also have a general idea of the area where the tree will be set up, so you can keep the tree’s diameter in mind.
- Transporting and setting up a tree is a 2 person job, bring a buddy to help out.
- We also have plenty of staff on hand to help you choose your tree.
- Bring along work gloves to keep your hands warm and prevent you from getting fresh tree sap on your hands. You may also want to bring a blanket or tarp to place between your car and the tree.
- Our staff will help you get the tree into your car.
Choosing a Live Christmas Tree
Freshness is key when selecting your tree, as you’ll want your tree to last throughout the holiday season. Most of the Christmas Trees sold here at Dees’ are grown on our very own Christmas Tree Farm in the State of Maine. Most commercial tree farms have to harvest their trees starting in late October to satisfy demand. Growing our own trees allows us to harvest as late as possible in late November so we can give your family the freshest trees possible. Keep in mind the dimensions you are looking for. If you don’t have a ladder at home, make sure to pick a tree short enough for you to manage and decorate on your own.
- Walk around the tree and check for bare spots. Look for a robust round/conical shape and keep in mind the branches will ‘fall out’ a bit once the tree is free from its netting
- Your tree should be vibrant in color and fragrance.
- The more sap you encounter, the fresher the tree.
- We sell mostly Balsam Fir and Fraser Fir Christmas Trees. While the Fraser Fir will last inside your home slightly longer, we feel the Balsam Fir gives you the best fragrance.
Once you’ve selected the perfect tree, make sure to have the stump cut fresh, taking off at least a ½ inch and making sure the cut is level and not cut on an angle. Your tree should then be netted again to make it easier to transport it home.
Transporting Your Live Christmas Tree
A healthy tree will be sappy, you’ll want to put your gloves on to prepare the tree for transport. If you’ve brought a blanket/tarp for the roof of your vehicle, lay it down and place the tree on top of it and secure it with rope.
If your tree is going on the roof, place the stump towards the front of the vehicle to prevent wind damage. If your vehicle does not have a roof rack to tie the tree to, open the doors (not the windows) to tie the tree down securely, looping around the tree as many times as necessary. If your tree extends beyond your cargo area or roof, attach a safety flag to what’s overhanging to alert your fellow motorists. Give the tree a tug and make sure it is stable and won’t budge. If the tree moves, tighten your ropes. Take it easy on the road, take it slow and ensure you get your tree home in the best possible condition.
Setting Up Your Live Christmas Tree
- Get your tree home and in water as soon as possible. Even if you are not bringing it in the house right away, lean the tree in your yard and stand it in a bucket of fresh water.
- Invest in a sturdy Christmas tree stand that can accommodate the amount of water your tree needs. A good rule of thumb is 1 quart of water per inch of your tree trunk’s diameter. Your stand should have a wide base, to avoid tipping of the tree.
- Set up your tree away from fire hazards such as vents, fireplaces and other heat sources. Keep your holiday candles away from your tree as well.
- One person should hold the trunk steady as the other adjusts the trunk in the tree stand. Keep the screws loose initially and adjust the tree until it stands straight up. Once the tree is standing straight up, tighten all screws in the stand to ensure stability.
- Give the tree a little shake in the stand and make sure it is tightly secured within the stand, adjust accordingly.
Caring for Your Live Christmas Tree
- Make sure your tree stays adequately watered, keeping the water level in your tree stand above the base of the tree.
- A fresh tree can absorb up to a gallon of water on day one and one or more quarts daily thereafter. Monitor your water levels daily. With the Auto Stop Christmas Tree Watering System you can avoid crawling under the tree to water!
- Keep your Christmas tree away from direct sunlight and heat sources as these can dry out your tree and cause it to age quicker.
- Drilling a hole in the stump of the tree is not necessary, this will not improve hydration.
- Consider using an additive to your water called Prolong. This helps open up the pores of the stump for even better water consumption of your Christmas Tree helping it stay even fresher.
Following these guidelines and tips will help you to choose the perfect tree for your home and ensure its longevity throughout the holiday season, so you can get to the fun part – decorating!