How to Keep Christmas Tree Fresh Throughout Holiday Season
Real, fresh-cut Christmas trees are our favorite types of Christmas trees around this time of the year! There is nothing quite like the smell of fresh pine filling your home, and the process of picking out a tree is a nostalgic tradition full of fun memories. Whether you cut your own tree down in the forest or pick out a tree from one of the many Christmas tree lots located near you, making sure that tree stays fresh throughout the holiday season is going to be your next task. We've come up with a list of things you can do to care for your Christmas tree properly and ensure its freshness throughout the holidays!
Why is it Important to Keep Your Christmas Tree Fresh?
Have you ever seen one of those videos of a Christmas Tree spontaneously combusting? It is pretty crazy to watch. Making sure your tree stays as fresh as possible is important for a number of reasons, your safety being the first and most important! A Christmas tree that is not properly cared for after being cut down will dry out very quickly, and when this happens, the heat produced by the tiny bulbs of your Christmas lights is enough to catch your tree on fire. A tree that is properly cared for, however, has much less of a chance of becoming so dry that it could pose a threat to you and your family.
The second reason it is important to keep your Christmas tree fresh throughout the season is purely aesthetic. A tree that is properly cared for will smell better for longer. It will also look nicer for longer as fresh trees retain their rich green color and hold onto their needles for longer. Increased needle retention will also make it less of a mess to clean up when you're ready to pack up your Christmas decorations for the year.
Christmas Tree Care Tips
Here are a few tips that we have put together to help you make sure that your Christmas tree stays looking fresh and beautiful for the whole holiday season:
1. Make a fresh cut on the trunk.
Giving your Christmas tree a fresh trim may not seem all that important, but it is actually one of the best things you can do especially if you have gotten your tree from a Christmas tree lot! The trunks of trees that have been sitting in a tree lot for a week or two have dried out and calloused over, which inhibits the trees' ability to absorb water. Giving it a fresh trim enables the tree to soak up water as soon as you get it home and in a tree stand. At Bath Garden Center & Nursery, we will give your tree a fresh trim AND help you load the tree onto your vehicle so that you can ensure it will get home safely and last as long as possible!
2. Water your tree immediately.
As you can imagine, your tree is probably pretty parched after sitting in a tree lot waiting to be taken home. Giving it some water right away will help it perk up a bit! Be sure to check the water frequently in the first couple of days, as this is when it is likely to soak up the most water.
3. Continue to water your tree regularly.
Amidst the business of the season, it can be easy to forget to water your Christmas tree, especially when there are presents packed in around the base of the tree. However, remembering to water your tree is extremely important! A Christmas tree left to sit in a dry tree stand will turn crispy fast! As a general rule of thumb, keeping a quart of water in your tree stand for every inch in diameter is best. Set reminders for yourself to check the water level every couple of days to keep your tree from dying out prematurely.
4. Keep your tree away from any heat sources.
Colorado is known for being dry, especially during the winter. Especially with furnaces cranked on those cold days, the air in your home can be much drier than you realize. While you aren't expected to turn your furnace off entirely while your Christmas tree is in your home, we do highly recommend positioning it somewhere away from any heat vents or closing any heat vents that may be located nearby. You also will not want to put your Christmas tree near your fireplace if you intend to use it at all! Space heaters are another thing to be aware of. Heat sources such as these will dry out your tree much faster, causing it to wilt, lose its needles, and become more of a fire danger.
5. Keep a humidifier in the room.
Putting a humidifier in the room will help keep your tree hydrated and fresh! Dry air sucks the moisture out of everything. Just think about how easily your lips get chapped in the winter or on a windy day! Maintaining decent humidity levels around your tree will help keep the air from pulling moisture out of the branches and needles of your tree, thereby helping it stay fresher and last longer. Keeping your tree well hydrated will also help protect it from fire danger!
6. Coat your tree with a moisture-retaining spray.
This is an extra step that you can take that is not necessary, but that could be useful. There are plenty of products out there that aim to help plants with water retention by forming a clear, protective coating on the foliage which then helps to reduce the escape of moisture. Such products should be applied outdoors and given some time to dry before bringing indoors. When evaluating whether or not this is a step you want to take with your Christmas tree, consider the size and density of your tree. An 8-foot tree that is very dense will likely require a lot of the product and a lot of time to apply, whereas a smaller, thinner tree might be a bit more manageable. If you do decide to apply a wilt-proofing spray, we recommend Wilt Stop by Bonide. This spray-on solution is easy to apply, odorless, and will help preserve the beauty of your tree and other fresh greens for the whole holiday season!
Christmas Tree Safety Practices
Now that you have done all you can to take care of your tree and keep it well-hydrated, here are a few other safety practices you should be aware of when having a fresh-cut Christmas tree in your home.
1. Always unplug your Christmas tree when you leave the house.
Always make sure to unplug your Christmas tree lights when you leave the house or go to bed for the night. Leaving the lights on for extended periods of time can increase fire danger! If you don't want to worry about plugging and unplugging it all the time, invest in an automatic timer.
2. Never place candles near your live Christmas tree.
Candles are very popular around the holiday season. They add the lovely aroma of pine, cinnamon, and other scents that are warm, cozy, and festive. They also are a lovely decoration that adds to the ambiance. Always be aware of where you are placing your candles though. With more decorations around your house than normal, it can be easy to overlook a candle that is sitting too close to something flammable.
3. Keep your tree away from any heat sources.
As we've already mentioned, keep your Christmas tree or anything else that could be flammable away from heat vents, space heaters, fireplaces, and any other heat sources!
4. Check your string lights for damage.
Before you decorate your tree, be sure to check your string lights for any damage such as broken bulbs, frayed wires, etc. All Christmas lights come with a few replacement bulbs just in case. If your lights are old and worn, it might be a better idea to not risk it and just get new lights.