“O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree, how lovely are thy branches!” Who doesn’t love a beautiful Christmas tree? Why only a scrooge of course, or maybe the Grinch! We absolutely love a lush, full Christmas tree adorned with lights, especially in a farmhouse or a cottage.
History of the Christmas Tree
Before we talk about choosing a Christmas tree, let’s first examine the history. How did the evergreen tree come to symbolize Christmas? According to History.com, ancient peoples revered evergreen trees because they stayed green year-round, even in the dead of winter. And speaking of the dead, ancient people hung evergreen boughs over doorways and draped them across windows to…you guessed it…ward off witches, ghosts, illness, and all manner of evil spirits. This carried through the ages, at times when people worshipped the sun as a god, but feared that the sun was becoming weak, and thus the days short. We know this time as the winter solstice (December 21), the longest, darkest day of the year. After December 21 had passed, people believed that the sun would become strong again, and were reminded of this strength by the omnipresent evergreen.
Modern History of Christmas Trees
In more modern times, it is widely acknowledged that Germany introduced us to the Christmas tree, beginning with 16th century Christians who brought evergreen trees inside their homes, adorned with decorations. As the story goes, German theologian and protestant reformer Martin Luther, was wonderstruck one clear evening as he was walking home. He was overcome by the beauty that surrounded him–bright twinkling stars shining in and among the evergreens. This inspired him to place lit candles on the boughs of his Christmas tree. Unfortunately, this tradition, which continued well into the 1960’s led to many house fires, and real candles were eventually replaced by wired lights. We could devote an entire post to the history of the Christmas tree, but now we would like to talk for a bit about choosing the best tree for your home.
Christmas Trees are the Centerpiece of Holiday Decor
Why is it important to choose the right Christmas tree for your space? Well, for starters, the Christmas tree becomes the centerpiece of your holiday decor and a place for families to gather. Christmas trees bring families together. What’s more important than that?
How to Choose the Perfect Christmas Tree
- Decide whether you want a real or artificial tree. Here are a list things for you to consider when choosing a Christmas Tree:
Benefits of Real Christmas Trees
- Real trees smell wonderful.
- Selecting a real tree can be a cherished family tradition.
- Real trees cost a lot less than a high-quality artificial tree.
- Real trees are recyclable.
- Real trees that are balled and not cut can be replanted.
Benefits of Artificial Christmas Trees
- Artificial trees can be used year after year.
- Artificial trees are available pre-lit
- High-quality artificial trees are nearly indistinguishable from real trees
- Artificial trees don’t drop needles every single day.
- Artificial trees don’t need to be watered.
- Many artificial trees are fire-resistant.
2. Choose a lovely spot in your home to place your tree; avoid placing your tree right next to a heat source, or in an overcrowded/high traffic area.
3. Measure the area of your room to determine your tree width.
4. Measure from floor to ceiling to determine your tree height, taking your tree topper into account.
5. Decide which tree shape is best for your space:
- Full (best for open spaces and large rooms)
- Narrow (best for smaller rooms or apartments)
- Slim (best for corners or tight spaces or to flank a fireplace)
- Flat back (lays flat against the wall)
- Sparse (best to showcase your favorite ornaments since the branches are far apart)
6. Choose a color: traditional green (usually available in several shades), white, flocked (frosted or snowy look)
- Choose a frosted or flocked tree for the look of soft snow (unfortunately, flocked trees make a big mess, but the flocking vacuums up easily and is worth the extra hassle). Looks fabulous with pastel and silver ornaments and mercury glass ornaments.
- Choose a green tree for a traditional look. Looks fantastic with brighter or traditional reds, greens, and golds.
- Choose an all white tree for a bright and airy feel, that is still warm. Looks wonderful with just white lights. No ornaments needed!
From the HartLand’s Favorite Christmas Trees for Farmhouses
If your budget allows, our absolute favorite trees, hands-down are from Balsam Hill. Balsam Hill has a variety of price ranges, with “most realistic” trees being the priciest. Most realistic needles are full and round and “mimic the structure, texture, and color variation” of natural evergreen trees. Classic needles are flat needles that are soft and usually made of PVC. Balsam Hill also offers three levels of realism: most realistic (True Needles throughout with some PVC needles closest to the trunk for fullness), realistic (True Needles mixed with PVC), and traditional (100% PVC).
Realistic Artificial Christmas Tree Species
Balsam Hill also offers a tremendous variety of tree species from spruce to fir, and everything in-between.
Celebrate with Family and Friends After Choosing Your Perfect Christmas Tree
This year more than others in recent memory, give yourself and your loved ones the gift of togetherness and gather ‘round your tree.
From the HartLand with love,
Monica, Brittany & Cheyenne