I am a real Christmas tree lover. Meaning when it comes to choosing an artificial or formerly live tree, I've always gone with the needle-dropping variety. I love the piney smell, the ambiance they lend to a room, it's something an artificial tree just doesn't do; at least for me.

However, I will admit there was a moment over the weekend when I was struggling to straighten my newly acquired tree in its stand, that I sat back and wondered how much my sister Carmela's beautiful fake Christmas tree cost. I pondered having a tree which wouldn't leave my house minus most of its needles at the end of January.

Yes, it is a well-known fact amongst my friends and family, that when I do have a Christmas tree (which hasn't been very often over the last decade) I tend to keep them well beyond their freshness date. At this point, I gather the needles into one bag, put the tree skeleton into another and haul the whole mess to my garbage can, just imagining my garbage haulers bemusement.

Over the years, I have learned some tips on how to keep your tree fresher, longer. Okay, maybe not as long as I keep them, but longer nevertheless.

  • Spray the tree with an antidessicant (like Wilt-Pruf) before bringing it in the house. This is the same product you spray your outdoor evergreens with to keep them from drying out, dropping needles and dying over the winter.
  • Keep it cool. Preferably not in direct sunlight and away from fireplaces and heaters
  • Water it. It seems like a no-brainer but letting it go dry due to forgetfulness is one thing that will kill it in record time.
  • Use low heat lights (like LEDs) and turn the tree off at night
  • Be gentle. The more you manhandle your tree, the more ethylene (a hormone which ages it) it releases. The more ethylene your tree releases, the harder your vacuum cleaner will be working to get the needles out of your carpet.

Enjoy your tree and Merry Christmas!

Source: PureWow.com

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