How to Care for Your Living Christmas Tree

Many people love the smell and sentimentality of having a live Christmas tree in their homes for the holidays, but they may not like the idea of a tree having to be cut down – and eventually die – for them to enjoy this longstanding holiday tradition. With a balled and burlapped live Christmas tree, you can enjoy the best of both worlds: a live tree during the holidays that, if properly cared for, will enjoy a long and healthy life outside for many years to come!

The (No More Than) 7-10 Days of Christmas

For a balled and burlapped Christmas tree, there’s no such thing as the 12 days of Christmas. Your living tree should be kept indoors no longer than 7-10 days. That means you need to determine which 7-10 days of the holidays you’ll want your tree to be in your home and then back-time your in-door set up date accordingly.

Avoid Sudden, Dramatic Temperature Changes

Your balled and burlapped Christmas tree will have a much better chance of experiencing a long, post-holiday outdoor life if you gently and properly transition it from outdoors to indoors and back again.

To help your living tree acclimate to these changes in temperature, first move your tree to a garage or enclosed porch for several days before bringing it indoors. Likewise, when the time comes to return your tree to the cold outdoors, make sure it has a several-day stop in one of these locations.

Proper Hydration

Your balled and burlapped tree is living, and to remain alive and healthy, it needs the correct amount of water. Throughout the process of transitioning your tree, enjoying it indoors and planting your tree outside, it’s essential that you keep the burlap-covered root and soil ball damp – but not too wet – at all times.

Uninviting Unwelcome Holiday Guests

Before you begin transitioning your balled and burlapped tree inside your home, it’s important to check for and remove any insects or eggs that may have attached themselves to the tree’s trunk or branches. In taking this step, you’ll help avoid any unwanted visitors – at least of the insect variety – this holiday season.

Location, Location, Location

When choosing where to place your living tree indoors, select a location that will help it to remain cool and hydrated. Don’t place your tree near a fireplace, heater or radiator. Also avoid placing your tree in direct sunlight while it is indoors.

Your Tree’s Holiday Attire: What Not to Wear

When decorating your balled and burlapped Christmas tree, it’s important to think cool and light. That means using LED lighting (which doesn’t create heat) vs. traditional incandescent holiday bulbs. And, when it comes to the ornaments, avoid those that are heavy in favor of lighter décor that won’t weigh down your tree’s branches.

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