Oh Christmas Tree….

December 3rd 2013
By: Melanie Hollidge

With Christmas literally just around the corner, families up and down the country will be pulling boxes out of cupboards and garages to find their artificial trees and getting them ready to decorate.  Or, if like my tree, the mouse got there first, it’s time to decide on which way to go for a new one – real tree or artificial tree…

Nothing beats the smell of a real tree, but then not much beats the pain of treading on a pine needle in bare feet for the rest of the year.  Well maybe treading on a piece of Lego might, but that’s not very festive!
The choice this year is even greater, with new designs of artificial trees on the market alongside traditional style trees, we see minimal twiggy trees, prelit twig trees, coloured trees, wall sticker trees for those with no floor space… the variety is almost endless.

Ranging in price from £15 to £500, there’s every option to suit every pocket.  The ‘green’ element doesn’t just relate to the colour options available, there’s the recycling and environmental consideration to make too.  Most local councils offer a tree recycling facility.  Alternatively, if you buy a tree with roots or in a pot, you can plant it or keep it in your garden and reuse it year after year.

With an artificial tree, you’re able to recoup the investment you make by using your tree for many years to come.  Look for the manufacturer’s warranty – usually about 5 years, and about 3 years for lights.  Careful storage of your tree will extend its life so you and your family can enjoy it for many years.

Whatever style of tree you choose, do be careful with artificial lights.   When you buy them, check that they have a safety kitemark and don’t buy second hand lights unless you’re able to have them checked by a professional.  If you need to replace any bulbs, turn them off first!  At night, remember to turn them off and unplug them to avoid the lights overheating and causing a fire hazard.

Whichever style of tree you choose, have a very happy Christmas and carry on the tradition of the last four centuries of decorating a tree to celebrate Christmas.