Much like hot chocolate on a cold winter’s day, or making snow angels in the first snow of the season, cutting your own Christmas tree is a treasured family tradition.
Warm 106.9 has created an easy how-to guide so you can focus on making family memories, not stressing about the tree.
1. Make a Fresh Cut
Make a fresh cut on the butt of the tree to open up the pores, which have been clogged by sap. Cut off at least one-half inch. The fresh-cut surface should be cream-white, not yellow or brown. If you do not make a fresh cut, the tree will not be able to drink water.
After the cut is made, put the tree in water as soon as possible. The longer the time between when the tree is given a fresh cut and when it is put into water, the less ability the tree has to absorb water.
Even if a hole is drilled to accommodate a pin-type stand, a fresh cut also should be made on the butt.
2. Put in Water
Remember to check stands for leaks.
Rinse water reservoir of the tree stand with a mixture of one capful of bleach and one cup of water before inserting the tree. This reduces the growth of micro-organisms that can block the tree’s ability to absorb water. Great care should be taken to avoid spilling or splashing the bleach on carpeting, etc.
Place the tree in a sturdy stand which will hold at least one gallon of water. Fill with plain water.
If the tree is not going into the house soon after purchase, it should be stored in a bucket of warm water on a cool porch or patio away from wind and sun in warm climates and protected from freezing and wind in cold climates.
An average tree may consume between a quart and a gallon of water per day.
If the water level drops below the cut end of the trunk, a seal will form and no more water will be absorbed by the tree unless another fresh cut is made. So don’t forget to add water every day.
3. Mini-Lights Produce Minimum Heat
Miniature lights produce much less heat and reduce the drying effect upon a tree.
Always check light sets for frayed or cracked wire insulation and broken sockets before placing them on a tree.
Place the tree away from heat sources such as heating vents, fireplaces, wood stoves and fireplace inserts, radiators, television sets or sunny windows.
4. Remove the tree promptly
Check for your local chipping and composting program with the parks and recreation department, local nursery or service organization.
After Christmas, before the tree dries, remove it from the house for recycling or pick up by your disposal service.
Never burn any part of a Christmas tree in a wood stove or fireplace.
Keys to a healthy tree and safe Christmas!
- Water Daily!
- Always turn off the lights of your tree when leaving the house or retiring for the night.
- Never use lighted candles.
- Keep Away From Heat Sources.
- Be careful not to block a door with the tree or rearranged furniture.
- Do not attempt to repair a worn light set. Throw it away and buy a new set.
Enjoy your tree!
Cut Your Own Christmas Tree
Plus, did you know? Permits are available to cut Christmas trees on the Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest beginning Nov. 12 through Dec. 24.
Cutting areas are located within national forest lands in the eastern portions of Pierce, King, Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties. Maps and information about cutting areas are provided where permits are sold at ranger stations and the Verlot and Glacier Public Service Centers.