10 Reasons to Buy a Real Tree This Holiday Season
Posted: November 12, 2018
Catch Forests Ontario at the Toronto Christmas Market from November 30-December 2nd and from December 7th-9th selling real, locally grown trees and wreaths from Somerville Nurseries. Visit us near the ticket booth to pick up your tree for the holidays. All proceeds support our planting programs.
While it’s true that the holidays can be hectic, overwhelming, and just a little crazy, one of the best ways to get into the spirit of the season is by pulling out the decorations, cranking up the cheesy holiday tunes, and putting up the tree. Whether your tree is a vision of heavily coordinated and tastefully selected ornaments or a happy mess of children’s art, heirloom ornaments, and garland that’s been around for one too many seasons, here are some reasons to go for the real thing instead of an artificial tree this year:
- You can’t beat that smell.
Let’s be honest, one of the best things about having a tree set up in your home is the glorious scent of pine needles. While you may be able to mimic this by picking up a scented candle or hanging pine-scented car air fresheners from the branches of your artificial tree, there really is nothing better than the smell of an actual tree. The scent of a plastic tree is just not up to par.
- It’s environmentally friendly.
When you buy a real tree, you’re actually doing the planet a favour. This may seem counter-intuitive to some (how can cutting down a tree help the environment?), but the truth is that the production, transportation, and discarding of artificial trees does much more to harm our earth than cutting down a tree. Real Christmas trees are grown sustainably on tree farms, and they decompose naturally when disposed of properly instead of sitting in a landfill for eons.
- Having a real tree in your home is good for your health.
It’s true. Trees have been proven to provide numerous health benefits, and being around trees has even been shown to improve general overall attitude and outlook. Studies have shown that house plants can also act as natural air purifiers. While an artificial tree sits in the corner collecting dust, a real tree can actually help you breathe cleaner air.
- A real tree doesn’t take up room once the holidays are over.
Particularly if you live in an apartment, condo, or smaller home, artificial trees take up a lot of storage space in the off season. Not to mention the fact that the tree will never fit in the box the same way it did when you bought it. The great thing about real trees is that you don’t have to worry about finding a place to keep it until you need to pull it out again the next year – and most cities make it quite simple to dispose of your tree using your local garbage pickup. Instead of wrestling with your tree to fit it back into a box that seems to get smaller every year, all you need to do is carry it out to the curb.
- Real trees don’t go out of style.
The tradition of bringing a tree into the home for the holidays has been around for thousands of years. While trends change (most of us don’t use lit candles to decorate our trees anymore, thank goodness), the look of a real tree has remained consistent. A brightly coloured tree, or a tree with built-in ornaments or lights, can go out of style in the blink of an eye. You can’t go wrong sticking with a classic.
- Choosing your tree each year is good family fun.
Piling into a car to go to the nearest tree farm or tree lot is a lot more exciting than pulling that box out of the attic, closet, or crawl space. Choosing a real tree means getting to spend time browsing around and finding the right one for you each year. You can find something small (like a 2-3 foot table-top tree) or something huge (like a towering 10 footer), or maybe you just want to give the Charlie Brown-style misfit tree a home for the holidays. It’s fun taking ownership and finding the right tree for you and your household each year (particularly for families with kids).
- You can’t beat the look of a real tree.
We all know that after one or two uses (or sometimes straight out of the box), artificial trees can look sparse. You can spend an hour trying to rearrange and fluff up the branches to no avail. A naturally full real tree requires none of the fuss, and will always look healthier, provided you care for it (make sure you water it regularly and get a fresh cut on it before taking it home!).
- A real tree supports your local economy.
While most artificial trees are manufactured elsewhere, buying your tree at a local farm or lot means your money is funneled back into your community. Knowing where your tree comes from and who helped it grow means you know exactly what your money is going towards.
- Tree farms help fight pollution.
Farms that grow trees for the holiday season absorb carbon dioxide year-round. The amount of carbon dioxide absorbed by a single farmed tree in its lifetime can be upwards of 1 ton, while the manufacturing and sale of one artificial tree puts a significant amount of CO2 back into the atmosphere. Studies show that you would need to re-use an artificial tree for 12-20 years to minimize its carbon footprint, and on average, artificial trees are used for only 5 or 6 years before being discarded.
- Real trees are just the all-around best.
Let’s face it. They’re more fun to pick out, they’re more fun to decorate, they smell awesome, and they’re way better for the planet. Sure, watering the tree is an extra chore (particularly if you have pets that like to drink out of the tree stand), and sometimes you have to sweep up pine needles (keep your tree nice and hydrated to help stop that). But the magic and excitement of the holidays is only enhanced when you choose a real tree. So grab a hot chocolate, put on your mitts, and get out to your local tree seller this Christmas. You’ll be so glad you did.