First, when you should purchase the tree?
A decent tree can last up to 4 weeks, provided that you look after it well.
If you’re buying a tree to last through Christmas, this is something to bear in mind.
If you’re buying a cut tree with a cradle, make sure there is plenty of space for water. You don’t want a tree that only just squeezes into the holder. This is because it needs plenty of space for water.
How does it look and feel?
When looking at the tree in person, most people just look at the height and how full and bushy it looks. Whilst this is important, it is not as important as making sure the tree is genuinely healthy.
Firstly ,run your hand along a few branches or gently shaking the tree you can see if many needles fall off. If it drops a lot of needles, then that tree is already on its way out. Stay clear of it.
Also use this opportunity to get up close to the tree and see if any of the needles are going brown. Again, if they are, steer clear.
Putting it in the perfect spot.
Once you have got it home, you need somewhere to put it. People often put it near the TV or by the window. Whereas it may look nice here, there are a few pointers to bear in mind when selecting the best place to put your Christmas tree.
Next to the TV is great because that usually means it is near a plug socket. That’s fine if you want to put lights on it, but be weary of the fire hazard.
Whilst the chance of causing a fire is fairly low, it’s definitely not something to ignore.
My advice would be to keep it close enough to the sockets if you need to use one, but far enough that if the electronics around the sockets, or the sockets themselves, catch fire the tree is far enough to not catch alight itself. I would also recommend using LED lights.
Keep it away from heat sources. Yes, that can be difficult as we all like our houses warm in the winter but keep it away from the radiator as that will dry it out faster than my uncles beer keg! If you are lucky enough to had underfloor heating, then you are not going to have a good time. Sorry.
Placement of your tree is important, just because you don’t really want it in the way. Putting it in the corner of the room is usually the best place to avoid bumps, knocks, trips, or falls.
When it comes to cleaning up needles, be aware as the needles can clog a small vacuum. Whereas using a dustpan and brush can be dispiriting or sapping (Yes that was on purpose, no I am not sorry).
Care for a tree like you care for a flower
You don’t want to leave your tree out of water for too long. You will want to get it prepared and in water as soon as possible. Sounds familiar? Well that’s exactly how you should care for your tree after bringing it home.
Cut the stem about 1 inch from the bottom. Using a hand saw is best as electrical tools can create too much heat and seal the sap from the tree, which will inhibit water absorption.
When screwing it into the cradle it is important to make sure it’s straight! Once it is secure, add water to the cradle.
Check the water level regularly and maintain levels.
Watch out for leaking sap . You won’t want it on your furniture or floor.
Make sure your decorations don’t damage the tree
As you begin to decorate, make sure all the lights work properly. It is a better that the lights you use are LED as they don’t produce heat. Reducing the fire hazard.
What to do with it after Christmas.
When you decide that you have had enough of your tree, I can almost guarantee that you will have missed some needles. Don’t worry too much if your tree drops needles, well watered Christmas trees drop less.
If bought from a tree farm/garden centre, they will usually have a recycle facility where you can take them back so they can be disposed of properly.
If not, you can put it in garden waste, or take it to the dump. Warning, I can assure you that it will be busy.
All information has been from my own knowledge and backing up from the below sources.