Real Christmas Trees
There are several advantages to selecting a real Christmas tree besides their Christmas fragrance. Evergreens are 100 percent biodegradable and once the season is over, can be recycled for a variety of purposes benefiting wildlife and nature in general. They also contain no chemical residue while fake, plastic trees are made of PVC, a dangerous chemical. Real Christmas Trees also supports a local tree farmer (most artificial trees are made overseas and shipped to North America).
Types of Christmas Trees
Although region plays a large part in what types of real Christmas trees are available, most popular varieties are balsam fir, Douglas fir, noble fir, Scotch pine, Virginia pine, and eastern white pine mainly because of how easy they are to grow. However, across the United States, there are more than 35 different species of evergreens grown for their Christmas appeal.
Here is our roundup of some of the most common evergreens available:
Douglas Fir: Boasting a pyramidal shape and blue to dark green needles, Douglas fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) is a dependable, long-lived cut tree. It flourishes in mild, humid climates with dry summers.
Fraser Fir: A regal, richly fragrant native tree, Abies fraseri has bicolor needles -- deep green on top, silvery white below. Its generally slender profile suits small rooms. Grow it only in cold-winter, cool-summer climates.
Noble Fir: With its cool blue-green, well-spaced branches and densely set, upwardly curved needles, Abies procera is aptly named. It's most often a cut tree, since it grows happily only in its Pacific Northwest home.
Scotch Pine: A classic conical shape and excellent needle retention make Pinus sylvestris the most popular cut tree of the holidays. It's also easy to grow because it's adapted to a wide range of climates and soils.
Virginia Pine: One of the few evergreens to tolerate warm winter temps, Pinus virginiana is a first pick among Christmas trees for Southerners. It's also a good cut tree because, like all pines, it holds its needles well.