Christmas Trees: How to Care for Your Real Tree and Prevent It from Dying

It’s officially Christmas and homes are being decked out with festive trees and decorations, just how do you keep your real tree looking good during the holidays? Here, Chris Bonnet, founder of Gardening Express, gives his tips on what you should do to make sure your Christmas tree lives up to the ceremony.

Traditionally, our Christmas trees should already be up and the festivities are underway. Advent Sunday began on November 27 – the fourth Sunday before Christmas.

But how do you keep the tree looking nice throughout the holiday season? There are many tricks for keeping your tree in good condition while you enjoy the long holiday season.

How to take care of your Christmas tree

Buy a Healthy Tree to Start With

It’s an obvious one – the healthier your tree is when you buy it, the longer it will last. If you’re going tree shopping, there’s a simple trick to test how good it is.

Try to run your hands through the branches and avoid this tree if brown needles fall off. Another trick is to buy a tree that is in some shade – this tree will be used to less sunlight so it won’t change much when you move it inside.

Read more: Mom’s cheap Christmas tree hacks to make your Christmas tree look fluffier and more expensive

keep it away from heat and light

No living plant responds well to intense heat. Placing your tree too close to bright lights, radiators or fireplaces means it will dry out quicker.

Instead, find a spot where your tree can get a few hours of natural light each day, and if it’s near a radiator, turn it off. Try sprinkling water regularly to keep your tree hydrated but avoid spraying any electric lights or decorations for health and safety reasons.

Opt for LED Lights

A Christmas tree has to be covered with bright lights but normal lights give off too much heat which can dry out the tree. If you’re going to be adding lights to your tree, consider LED lights.

Not only do they release less heat, but they are also more efficient and give a softer glow to the tree. Easy to get on and off too – no need to crawl under trees to find plug sockets.

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Trim the Bottom of Your Tree Before Watering

When you buy your tree, the seller will have already cut the bottom of it. But before potting up the tree, it’s a good idea to give it another cut. Sap from the first trim will build up at the base of the trunk in an attempt to heal the tree’s wound. Giving it another trim before placing it in the water will even it out, allowing for better water consumption.

check water level daily

You might be surprised how much water your tree will consume. In the first few weeks, they can drink up to several liters of water. Christmas trees typically consume about one to two liters of water a day, so make sure you keep an eye on the water level and top it up when necessary.

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