OHMYOHMYOHMY…Oh hey! Sorry, I was just freaking out a little bit. Why exactly? Well, I figured it would be so obvious. Christmas, my all-time most favorite day of the year is right around the corner! I’ve been so busy up at the North Pole getting things ready, and yet I still have time to sit and ponder.
See, the other day I was talking with a friend of mine. I asked them about Christmas Trees and how to look after them. It’s not something I’ve given a ton of thought to, and then they pointed out something so interesting to me.
There are many types of Christmas Trees. Some homeowners in Gainesville, Florida have artificial trees that they reuse year after year. Others visit a local tree farm, cutting down that perfect live tree and bringing it home for the season. In both cases, it made me wonder: how do you look after Christmas Trees, before and after the season?
So that’s why I’m here today. I’m going to cover four points my friend taught me: pre-season care for artificial Christmas Trees, seasonal care for real trees, and then finally post-holiday care for both.
Artificial Christmas Trees – how to look after them
Let’s start with artificial Christmas Trees and how to look after them before you get busy decorating. First, your tree has probably been stuffed — quite tightly — in a box of some kind. It may be the box that you brought it home in or it may be a replacement box you’ve purchased over the years.
Either way, take a shirt and ball it up. Stuff it in a small space for a week. When you pull it out, it’ll be all wrinkly, right? The same idea is true here too. Your tree needs to breathe! However you build it, be sure to “fluff it” so that the branches return to their natural shape. If there are any leftover pieces of tinsel from last year, now is the right time to remove them.
Seasonal care for real trees
How bright and soft are the branches and needles of your real Christmas Tree right now? If they’re beginning to feel a little crunchy or are losing their color, then your tree needs some care. How to look after real Christmas Trees isn’t too complex. And, believe it or not, with a little bit of care, your tree can last you all the way from Thanksgiving to well past Epiphany!
What kind of care does this involve? That’s easy: regular watering. Keeping the container that your tree sits in full of water is the best way to prolong its life. And as a bonus tip here, if you have a four-legged friend, be sure to keep them away from your tree — otherwise, they may drink the water!
One last note: the amount of water you go through will be significant in the first week or two that your tree is home. It will slow down as the season goes on, but keep an eye on it to be sure.
Post-holiday care for artificial Christmas Trees
Let’s start with one of the most important things you can do before you box up your tree. If you put any tinsel on it, be sure to remove all of it. If you pack the tree up with this still attached, it can create quite a mess when you unpack it during the next season.
Next, consider vacuuming your tree before you box it up. Naturally, you’ll want to do this after you remove all of the decorations, lights, and garland. By doing so, it’ll remove the dust that can sometimes accumulate over time. If you have an allergy sufferer in your home, they’ll greatly appreciate this tip!
Finally, your Christmas Tree probably came in a box that you reuse each year. However, over time these will start to break down with repeated usage. Consider switching to a plastic tree box for a long-term solution.
What to do with your real tree after Christmas
So now we’ve come to the last of my four tips: what to do with your real tree after Christmas. You might think that, after the season is over, that’s it — your tree is done. As it turns out, however, there are a few things you can do to give it new life.
Let’s start with one of my favorites: turning the trunk into an ornament or two. Using a sharp hand saw, cut a section of the trunk off. I recommend two to three inches thick. Then, you can decorate these for next year. And as a pro tip, if you have a couple of kiddos in the house, cut off an ornament for each of them. It’s a great way to upcycle while preserving the memory of this past Christmas.
Once you’ve done that, or if you don’t have the time to create ornaments, then what should you do? Some Christmas Tree farms will take these back so that they can recycle them, turning them into mulch. As another idea, if you have a family member or friend who has a pond, you can give it to them to drop in the bottom. Fish love these as they make great underwater habitats.
Don’t forget about the lights!
Next month, I’ll be talking about another really fun conversation that me and my friend had. That is the best way to store Christmas lights. Be sure to check back then to find out more.
But, if this is something you’d like to get away from, I have a great solution for you: let Twinkle Nights take care of your lights for you. They’ll gladly set up the world’s best-looking Christmas displays right here in Gainesville at your home or business. Then, when the season is over, they’ll take it down for you.
See you later my friends!
Here are some other resources to help light up your holiday season!