We don’t like fake stuff around here.
Fake food is definitely a no-no. And the same goes for our Christmas trees.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had an artificial Christmas tree before, but when we moved we decided not to bring it with us.
A few of our biggest reasons for breaking up with our artificial tree were that we didn’t like storing it, even though it was only 2 years old the pre-lit lights were dead, and we really wanted the nostalgia of getting a real tree every year from one of our local Christmas tree farms.
But what was a quick decision before our move, has become one that sits better and better with me. Because as I’ve thought about it more, I’ve realized there are some really awesome and important reasons to go real when it comes to your Christmas tree each year.
1.) Environmentally Friendly
Now, at first cutting down trees may not seem like it’s the best thing in the world. But hear me out. Christmas tree farms spend years cultivating a tree to the point it’s ready to cut it down and bring it home. All that time those trees are living air purifiers! And you may not realize this but Christmas tree farmers plant 3 new seedlings for each tree they harvest, and in order to sustain their businesses, they aren’t cutting down more then is healthy. So that’s a win on the clean air front!
Beyond that awesome benefit, if you go to a local Christmas tree farm, you can reduce the carbon foot print by a lot. No manufacturing overseas, no shipping from over seas like with artificial trees, and oh ya, those Christmas tree tents outside your neighborhood big box store…chances are those were shipped there from another state. You’ll also probably pay a little less by buying local because of eliminating fuel costs. Now there is one caviot, try make sure it’s an organic Christmas tree farm. They are becoming more and more common, so ask around to find one. But it’s definitely not good for the environment or your family to bring in a pesticide-laden Christmas tree.
2.) Supporting your local economy
That brings me to the next point. I think we can all agree that buying local is super awesome for your local economy. Those Christmas tree farmers in your area are a part of your community and by supporting them you can help your local economy thrive. Not to mention help keep your air a little cleaner (remember reason number one?). There are Christmas tree farms in every state in the US. So I’d encourage you to go to this website and find a Christmas tree farm near you.
3.) Its Recyclable
Did you know you can’t recycle artificial Christmas trees? Nope. You can’t. Can you imagine all the old fake trees sitting in land fills across the nation? Kinda sad, am I right? But you may be thinking, what am I gonna do with my real Christmas tree after Christmas is over?? Well you have a few options,
- Mulch it! Go in on renting a wood chipper with a few neighbors and mulch your Christmas trees. You can use it in your garden! (another reason to make sure it’s organic!) If you haven’t heard of woodchips in your garden, go watch this film on the Back to Eden gardening method.
- Plant it! You may be able to find a Christmas tree farm with potted trees. If you have some space on your property, go ahead and plant it!
- Yard Waste. Most munincipalities will collect your old Christmas tree as yard waste.
- Get more great ideas here.
4.) For your health!
Did you know there are TONS of toxins in artificial trees? Yep. Phthalates, parabens, heavy metals…ya, greeeeaaat stuff, right? Some people claim that the artificial trees being flame retardant is a benefit….I’m not buying it. Flame retardant equals toxins, and my babies are gonna be touching that tree. Uh-uh, no way. And if you properly water your real Christmas tree, it’s chances of holding a flame are very low. Again, if you purchase a real Christmas tree that’s been grown with pesticides and herbicides, it’s not really much better, so do some homework and find an organic tree if you can.
If you live in a smaller home like we do, storage space is premium. And artificial trees take up quite a bit of room. It may be a more minor reason to choose a real Christmas tree, but it’s still beating out the artificial trees on this one. Oh, and no ‘fluffing’ up the boughs needed!
It’s traditional, man! It smells nice, it looks so much nicer then artificial trees, and really adds a sense of nostalgia to the holidays. It can be a beautiful family tradition to go pick out your Christmas tree together each year. And aren’t the holidays all about family and making memories?
So what do you think? Are you going real this Christmas??
If you’re interested in starting a Christmas tree farm, you may want to check out this book.