Choosing a real Christmas Tree
To add that scent of Christmas, it has to be a real tree. He's our guide to choosing the right real Christmas Tree for your home.
Before you leave the house, measure the height of the room that you want the tree to fit into. Don’t forget to factor in the height of the tree stand! You should also consider the width of the tree, which can vary wildly.
The three trees widely available are Norway Spruce, Nordmann Fir and Blue Spruce.
The traditional Norway Spruce has been a popular British Christmas tree since the Victorian era when Queen Victoria's husband Prince Albert, introduced the German custom of decorating a spruce tree to England in the early 18th century. It has a rich pine scent and beautiful pyramid shape. It is more prone to dropping it's spiky needle-like leaves meaning it's not very child friendly and requires maintenance. If you're keen on this variety, wait until later in December, make sure you water it regularly and try to keep it away from radiators.
The Nordmann Fir holds needles really well which is one of the reasons why it is now the most popular tree in the UK. It can be brought in early December and if maintained well, still look in good condition by January 6th. It also has a good shape and glossy green foliage.
The Blue Spruce is named as such because of its beautiful blue needles and looks great with a silver colour scheme. Much like the Norway spruce, it has sharp needles, though it does hold it's needles well.
Make sure the tree is in good condition
Before deciding on and purchasing a tree make sure it is fresh and healthy. Brush it gently with your fingers or tap it lightly on the ground – if it sheds lots of needles, it may be an old tree. Avoid trees with any brittle branches and dull needles
Once your is tree home, you will need to do a few things to keep it fresh. Cut off the netting to allow the branches to settle and saw off about half an inch (2.5cm) from its base in order to open up its pores – just as you would do with fresh flowers. Next, put it in a bucket of water and keep it outside in a shady, sheltered spot until you’re ready to bring it indoors.
Once inside, stand your tree in a container that you can top up with water to help it last longer. It will need to be watered daily. The average Christmas tree can use as much as 1 gallon (3.79 liters) of water a day.
In addition to keeping your tree watered, you should not place your tree near anything that could be a possible heat source. Avoid fireplaces, furnaces and air vents.
A well maintained tree can last up to 6 weeks!
Finally, remember to recycle your tree once Christmas is over. Bourne Valley Garden Centre has a FREE tree recycling point available for tree drop-off from 27th December.