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Choosing and Caring for a Cut Christmas Tree

ASHEVILLE, NC – If you’ve decided to purchase a cut tree this year, here are some tips that will help you select the best tree and keep it in good condition throughout the holidays.

  1. Purchase a fresh tree with needles that do not fall off when shaken.
  2. Store the tree outdoors, standing in a bucket of water until it is brought inside.
  3. Re-cut the base of the stem when the tree is brought into the house.
  4. Be sure your tree stand is large enough to hold adequate water. Check the water level daily and keep the cut surface covered with water at all times. A cut Christmas tree will absorb between two pints and one gallon of water per day.
  5. Avoid exposing the tree to heat sources and warm drafts. Use an anti-transpirant spray (Antitranspirants are compounds applied to the leaves of plants to reduce the evaporation of water.) to help slow the drying out of the needles.

The selection and decoration of a Christmas tree is an important part of many families’ traditional holiday activities. By following a few simple guidelines, trees can be chosen and cared for in a manner that enhances the enjoyment of a special season.

For more information, see the Holiday Plant Tips video which will tell you how to choose and care for poinsettias and cut and live Christmas trees. You can also visit the NC Cooperative Extension website or call 255-5522.

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