Taking Care Of Your Fresh Cut Christmas Tree
When a Christmas tree is cut, more than half its weight is water. Here are some tips to maintain the quality of your Christmas tree.
Your real Christmas tree needs some help to stay full and fresh. Water, water, water will do wonders. Your Christmas tree may drink more than a gallon of water each day for the first few days.
- To display the trees indoors, use a stand with an adequate water holding capacity for the tree. As a general rule, stands should provide 1 quart of water per inch of stem diameter. Devices are available that help maintain a constant water level in the stand.
- Use a stand that fits your tree. Avoid whittling the sides of the trunk down to fit a stand. The outer layers of wood are the most efficient in taking up water and should not be removed.
- Make a fresh cut to remove about a 1/2-inch thick disk of wood from the base of the trunk before putting the tree in the stand. Make the cut perpendicular to the stem axis. Don't cut the trunk at an angle, or into a v-shape, which makes it far more difficult to hold the tree in the stand and also reduces the amount of water available to the tree.
- Once home, place the tree in water as soon as possible. Most species can go 6 to 8 hours after cutting the trunk and still take up water. Don't bruise the cut surface or get it dirty. If needed, trees can be temporarily stored for several days in a cool location. Place the freshly cut trunk in a bucket that is kept full of water.
- Check the stand daily to make sure that the level of water does not go below the base of the tree.
- Keep trees away from major sources of heat (fireplaces, heaters, heat vents, direct sunlight). Lowering the room temperature will slow the drying process, resulting in less water consumption each day.
Should you add anything to the Christmas tree water? Here is what Acme How To reports:
There are many common practices of adding something to the water in a Christmas tree stand to help keep the tree alive longer. Anything that will keep the needles green and on the tree is worth a shot, right? Adding Aspirin, sugar, 7-Up or bleach are common additives used by many to preserve the tree. These myths are so commonly held that the Mythbusters team tested them in their 2006 TV season. To see the results of their experiments on Christmas tree preservation watch the Mythbusters 2006 Christmas Special. *Spoiler Alert: Water is all you need, nothing else. In fact some things can shorten the time your tree remains fresh. So don't bother with fertilizer, 7-up, glycerin or anything else; just give your Christmas tree plenty of water.
Good luck! Remember there's no such thing as an ugly Christmas tree. Send us a picture of your creation in space below!
[Information from National Christmas Tree Association]