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Christmas tree real vs fake what should you choose? Both real Christmas trees and artificial trees have pros and cons.
As the holiday season approaches, one of the many decisions we need to make is choosing between a real or an artificial Christmas tree.
Especially if you love both, it can be a difficult choice to decide on the kind of tree to decorate your living room with. I love to have multiple Christmas trees throughout our home and outside through the holiday season. So I mostly use artificial trees now, but we have used real trees too and loved them very much.
If you’re not sure what type of Christmas tree to pick here are some pros and cons of using a real Christmas or a fake Christmas tree.
Pros of Real Christmas Trees
Natural Fragrance: The unmistakable, fresh pine scent of a real Christmas tree can instantly uplift the holiday spirit in your home. To me, this is the main reason real Christmas trees are so special.
Environmentally Friendly: Real trees are renewable, and for every one harvested, tree farms plant more. They are natural air purifiers, absorbing carbon dioxide and other gases, and emitting oxygen in return.
Supports Local Economy: Purchasing a real tree often means supporting local tree farmers and small businesses, which is a great way to give back to your community.
Traditional Experience: For many, the annual trip to pick a real tree is a cherished family tradition, filled with joy and creating lasting memories. You can find them for sale at local tree lots of Christmas tree farms.
The first 2 Christmas seasons after we first married we cut real Christmas trees from our farm. The fun of finding and selecting the “perfect” tree is something we still cherish.
Biodegradable: After Christmas, real trees can be recycled or composted, making them an environmentally sound choice.
Variety and Authenticity: With different varieties available, natural trees offer a range of options and a more traditional feel compared to a plastic Christmas tree. There are so many types of trees you can choose from, make sure to pick the best fresh tree for your home.
No Assembly Required: Unlike artificial trees, real Christmas trees require no time-consuming assembly. You get the full, lush tree as nature intended it.
Cons of Real Christmas Trees
Maintenance: They need regular watering and care to maintain their appearance and reduce needle drop. Try using a homemade Christmas tree preservative to keep your tree looking beautiful.
Fire Hazard: A dry Christmas tree can be a fire risk needing extra care, especially around lights and heaters. You need to make sure to keep it away from heat sources.
Allergies: Pine trees or the mold that grows on them can trigger allergies in some people.
Mess and Cleanup: The inevitable needle drop means regular vacuuming, and disposing of the tree post-holidays can be a chore.
Limited Lifespan: A real tree’s charm is transient, lasting only a few weeks before it starts to wilt. If your tree starts to dry out try these tips to revive your Christmas tree.
Pesticides and Chemicals: Depending on the source, some real trees may have been exposed to chemicals to kill bugs and molds.
Cost: Since you have to buy a new tree every year over time, the annual purchase of a real tree may amount to more than the one-time cost of an artificial tree.
Transportation: Getting the tree home can be a logistical challenge, requiring a large amount of vehicle space and secure transportation methods.
Pros of Artificial Christmas Trees
Convenience: Artificial trees eliminate the need for annual tree shopping, providing a ready-to-use option year after year.
No Maintenance: Unlike real trees, artificial ones don’t require watering, reducing daily upkeep efforts during the busy holiday season.
Cost-Effective: Although the initial investment may be higher, a fake tree can be more economical in the long run, as it can be reused for many years.
If you love to have Christmas trees in more than one room, artificial trees are probably your most budget-friendly choice.
No Mess: Say goodbye to falling needles and sap, artificial trees keep your home clean and tidy.
Fire Safety: Artificial trees are often made from fire-resistant materials, reducing the risk of a fire hazard significantly.
Allergy-Friendly: If you are allergic to pine or natural tree molds, a fake Christmas tree offers a sneeze-free alternative.
Variety of Styles: From traditional to modern, artificial trees come in various styles, colors, and sizes, accommodating all tastes and home decor. You can even buy prelit Christmas trees to save some time wrestling with tangled lights.
Easy Storage: After Christmas, artificial trees can be conveniently disassembled and stored away, taking up minimal space.
Cons of Artificial Christmas Trees
Environmental Impact: Most artificial trees are made from plastic, which is not biodegradable and can be harmful to the environment.
Lack of Authenticity: Artificial trees might lack the charm and authenticity of a real Christmas tree, missing out on the natural look and scent.
Storage Space: Although easy to store, artificial trees still require storage space, which can be a challenge in smaller homes.
Initial Cost: The upfront cost of a high-quality artificial tree can be significantly more than buying a real tree.
Potential Health Risks: Some artificial trees may contain harmful chemicals like PVC, which can release toxins over time.
Assembly Required: Setting up an artificial tree can be time-consuming, as it requires assembling and fluffing branches to achieve a natural look.
Less Traditional: If you cherish traditional holiday feelings, an artificial tree might not evoke the same festive spirit as selecting and decorating a real tree.
Wear and Tear: Over time, artificial trees can wear out, lose their color, or become less full, necessitating eventual replacement.
The best choice will always be the tree you love. If you want to find a middle ground between a fake tree and a live Christmas tree why not try a potted tree for Christmas? It’s a fun option, you can enjoy it in your home and then plant it in your yard after Christmas.
Kim Mills is a homeschooling mom of 6 and lives on an urban homestead in Ontario, Canada. Blogging at Homestead Acres she enjoys sharing tips to help you save money, grow and preserve your own food.