Christmas Tree Fresh
Choosing a real Christmas tree is a fun outing for the whole family and easy to
do. To make your tradition a more memorable and pleasant one, wed like to offer a
few helpful hints for keeping your tree fresh throughout the holiday season:
- Once you've chosen your tree, keep it in a sheltered, unheated area such as a porch or
garage to protect it from the wind and sun until you are ready to decorate it.
- Before you set up your tree, make a fresh, straight cut across the base of the trunk
(about a quarter inch up from the original cut) and place the tree in a tree stand that
holds a gallon of water or more.
- Keep the tree stand filled with water. A seal of dried sap will form over the cut stump
in four to six hours if the water drops below the base of the tree, preventing the tree
from absorbing water later when the tree stand is refilled. If a seal does form, another
fresh cut will need to be made.
- A tree will absorb as much as a gallon of water or more in the first 24 hours and one or
more quarts a day thereafter. Water is important because it prevents the needles from
drying and dropping off and the boughs from drooping. Water also keeps the tree fragrant.
- In addition, keep your tree away from heat and draft sources like fireplaces, radiators
and television sets. Test your light cords and connections before hanging them on the tree
to make sure they're in good working order. You don't want to use cords with cracked
insulation or broken or empty sockets. Also be sure to unplug the lights before you go to
bed or leave the house. Never overload electrical circuits.
Sensible precautions such as these will help preserve the unique beauty and tradition
that only a real Christmas tree can provide.