Tips for buying a Christmas tree
When Christmas arrives, practically in all homes and shops we find one of the most characteristic symbols of our Holidays: the Christmas tree. The origin of this tradition is not clear, as some historians go back to Ancient Egypt in search of its first manifestations and others place it in the 19th century. What is true is that it is a deeply rooted custom in our country and that by this time stores and nurseries sell thousands of copies.
Plastic or natural?
The first thing we should think about when buying a Christmas tree is whether we want it artificial or natural. The artificial tree has the advantage that we can use it every year, but it is always prettier and more ecological to buy a natural one. Recently, the College of Forest Engineers of our country recommended the purchase of natural trees in nurseries because, during their growth (about seven years), they are able to capture large amounts of carbon dioxide. In addition, the tree can be replanted and if, in the worst case, it does not survive once replanted, it can be used as fertilizer (some municipalities set up special devices after Christmas to collect trees that have dried and convert them into fertilizer).
Plastic trees are made of hydrocarbon material, with which large amounts of greenhouse gases are emitted, in addition to being manufactured outside Spain. When we buy a fir in a nursery, in most cases its origin will be from northern Spain and will have been planted for this purpose, so we can be sure that they have not been cut.
Choose the natural fir variety
Fir of the Caucasus or Normandy ( Abies nordmanniana ): It comes from Asia Minor, Greece or the Caucasus and can reach 25 meters high.
Red Spruce ( Picea abies ): It is native to Northern and Central Europe and can reach 50 meters high.
Araucaria excelsa: It’s not a fir tree, but it looks very similar. Withstand indoor conditions much better than fir trees. It is often grown as an indoor plant.
White Spruce ( Abies alba ): Originally from the Pyrenees, a very delicate and protected species in some autonomous communities, so the purchase of this species is not recommended.
Fir Pinsapo ( Abies pinsapo ): Originally from the mountains of Cádiz and Málaga from 1,000 meters above sea level, a very delicate and protected species in some autonomous communities, so the purchase of this species is not recommended.
Natural Spruce Care
If you have decided to buy a natural tree to keep it in a pot, or to replant it in your garden or in the forest, we will give you some recommendations for its care. You should keep in mind that these plants have been removed from their natural habitat so it is not easy for them to survive. However, if they have acclimatized to the nursery, taking care of them properly, they are very likely to get ahead, growing and developing without problems.
First of all, when buying a fir tree, you must make sure that it is perfectly rooted in its pot, as there are companies that pluck them from bare roots, that is, they prune the roots and leave them without possibilities of rooting. To check, you must make sure that the plant has been potted for some time. Pull it and if you keep the root ball full land is a sign that it takes time in the pot, if not, distrust, because they place them in the pots hurriedly and when you are going to buy them has not given them time to root.
Firs are outdoor plants, so they need natural ventilation. If you are going to have it at home during the Christmas period, try to open the windows from time to time or take it outside whenever you can. It is important to locate it in areas far from heat sources such as heating or radiators. Always look for the coolest place in the house, as far as possible, since its original climate is very low temperatures.
Water it frequently, every two or three days, trying to get all the soil in the pot wet. If you put a dish under the pot (which must have adequate drainage), try to empty it to avoid water logging that can damage the roots. Spray it occasionally with fresh water trying not to spoil the ornaments.
And remember: when you place the ornaments, be very careful not to damage the buds of the ends of the branches, because you can damage their growth. As soon as the Holidays are over, take it outside.
We wish you a very good holiday.