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Balsam Fir Tree
Photo by: Boris Misevic

Real Christmas Trees Guide

If you are struggling to find the perfect real Christmas tree to have in your home during the most wonderful time of year, look no further! We will cover all that you need to know about buying and maintaining a Christmas tree so that your tree can last throughout the festive season. You can see if you prefer a real tree to an artificial Christmas tree by reading all about the different types of real Christmas trees.

Balsam Fir Tree
Photo by: Boris Misevic

Types of Christmas trees

Balsam Fir

The Balsam Fir is said to be the most fragrant out of all the real Christmas tree varieties. So if you’re looking for the best Christmas time smell from the moment you walk through your door, this may be the tree for you. For that smell to really last and keep the tree from drying out, they require a fair bit of water; as any real Christmas tree would.

Canaan Fir

These trees are often compared similarly to Balsam Firs in the aesthetic they share, but also gave the needle weight and retention of a Fraser Fir – making them one of the ideal real Christmas tree to purchase.

Colorado Blue Spruce

Well, it’s given in its name, this tree is sure to make a statement with its ice blue needles! The Colorado Blue Spruce also rarely shed its needles, although these needles are sharp! So be extra cautious when around the tree – especially if you have little ones!

Douglas Fir

This is one of the most popular Christmas trees in America. They became so popular due to their pyramid shape and full branches – the needles grow in all different direction which gives them that full, plush look. The Douglas Fir can easily be compared to the Norway Spruce.

Easter Red Cedar

This type of tree, in particular, is very dense and green. Their needles also grow in a straight upward direction. However, despite being called a cedar it is actually part of the juniper family.

Eastern White Pine

These trees are the best if you’re looking for a natural aesthetic in your home during the Christmas holiday, especially if you want the tree to be the focus of your home. Although, they aren’t the best for ornaments and have very little aroma, though their soft and flexible needles make the tree look fluffy and pretty.

Fraser Fir

Not only does this tree have a festive scent, but they are also perfect if you want to go all-out with your decorations! They have very sturdy branches which means they can withhold the weight of your ornaments!

Norway Spruce

The Norway Spruce is one of the most recognisable real Christmas trees from its iconic features of being bright green, bushy and has dense pointed needles. Usually, the tree is formatted in a tidy pyramid shape and has that typical Christmas tree smell. Though the needles do drop quickly so take care and keep watered!

Scots/Scotch Pine

This tree is more known for its blue/green tones across the needles of the tree. Perfect if you are looking to make a statement in your living room with a not-so-typical coloured tree! The Scots (or Scotch) Pine is also great for water retention, meaning that it doesn’t dry out as easily or shed its needles as much!

White Fir (Concolor Fir)

The White Fir is popularly known for its blue-tinted needles and its unusual smell. Rather than the typical scent of pine, this real Christmas tree has more of a citrus aroma – cool right?!

White Spruce

It is said that these trees are great for holding ornaments because of their short, stiff needles, although, when the needles are crushed they don’t release the best aroma, so they perhaps aren’t the best real Christmas tree if you’re buying one for their scent.

When to buy a real Christmas tree?

There is no real advantage in waiting until the last minute in buying a real Christmas tree. All live trees are generally cut at the same time in their fields in late October/November. So when it comes to choosing, the earlier the better really, as it means you’ll have the widest options available to choose from. It also means that you can begin caring for your tree as soon as possible, keeping your tree alive and fresh throughout the Christmas period.

How much should I pay for a real Christmas tree?

Prices for a real Christmas tree can range from your luxury £500 trees to a budget option of £10 trees. Usually, you can find a great quality tree between £30 and £60 depending on what tree you are looking for. However, it also depends on where you are, and where you are buying from this is what makes the price range vary.

A good rule of thumb is that any store you go to that sells real Christmas tree or a Christmas tree farm if you take you time and look a the trees carefully you can find a great quality tree for £20 or £25 which is a steal!

Meanwhile in London, a city notoriously known for being one of the most expensive cities in the world, it is not uncommon to pay between £40 and £80 for a tree! So when you are looking for a tree, remember to inspect your tree before purchase, just because the tree is more expensive doesn’t always mean it is going to be the best quality.

Douglas Fir Tree
Photo by: Ed Leszczynskl

What is the most expensive type of Christmas tree?

Douglas Firs rank as being one of the most popular trees to buy around the Christmas period, and in turn the most expensive real Christmas tree to purchase on the market to date. This is due to their huge popularity in their fresh and natural aesthetic people desire in a tree at Christmas time.

Do I need a Christmas tree stand?

Christmas tree stands are designed to have a built-in water-well, this is so that the tree doesn’t dry out as natural trees require a fair amount of water. You should chop, or saw, the bottom of your tree’s trunk if it does not fit in the stand properly!

Christmas Tree Stand
Great Home Depot

But really, you should get a stand for your tree as they are pretty essential. Don’t worry though, they are very sturdy as they’re built to hold your tree for a long period of time and are available in a variety of colours that won’t throw off your trees aesthetic.

How do you preserve a Christmas tree?

The trick into keeping your tree fresh is by keeping the trunk of your tree (bottom 2 inches) in water, it does mean you have to keep regularly watering it, as you would with any plant!

Though note that you should only water and feed your tree the amount you type of tree desires – just don’t let it dry out!

Best Christmas tree (in our opinion)

In our opinion, the best real Christmas tree you should buy for your living this Christmas would have to be the Balsam Fir. The other trees are also very good trees for your living at Christmas time, it’s just the Balsam Fir ticks all the right boxes in our opinion.

The Balsam Fir is sturdy, has a great aroma that is long-lasting and the branches are sturdy for you to hang your ornaments on! Another perk of the Balsam Fir is that their needles rarely drop and are long-lasting. They also grow to a great height between 6 and 7 feet tall and to top it all off they are extremely affordable! Meaning that this Christmas tree is sure to make an impression on your guest during this time as well as making a great centrepiece of your living room.

Christmas Tree Farms in the UK

There are hundreds of UK Christmas Tree Farms dotted all over the UK, so if you are looking for local ones there is probably one right next door to you. But we’ve created a list of the top 11 Christmas Tree Farms in the UK that can be accessed no matter where you are in the UK.

South East Farms:

Badger Hill Christmas Tree Farm, Bedfordshire

A family-owned farm in growing 10,000 trees across 6 acres of land. You can walk through the farm and choose your tree yourself. You can even cut it yourself or ask a member of the farm to help you.

They even hold days where you can view the trees before you buy one, and they all go on sale once the farm has opened fully. You tag it with your family name and let them know when you’ll be collecting your tree.

Dane End Christmas Tree Farm, Ware, Hertfordshire

Offering a variety of Norway spruces that differ in height, shape and size. You can walk through the farm to find your very own personal Christmas tree. The farm also sells a range of tree stands and handmade wreaths to go with your Christmas tree!

The workers are ever so helpful in drilling holes into your tree trunk so that it fits into the stand perfectly and firmly to ensure its security! Then once the Christmas period is over (sad we know) you can return your tree to the farm where they will then recycle the tree in an eco-friendly way.

London based farms:

Alice Holt Woodland Park, Farnham, Surrey

Not only do they have a Christmas tree farm where Norway Spruces and Fraser Firs are available, but there are also walking and cycling trails for you and the family to adventure down! For kids, there are play areas, wooden animal climbing frames as well as sculptures, even of the popular children’s character the Gruffalo.

If you want to bring the whole family along to pick out your tree, even your pet dog can come along for the journey and excitement! One thing you must remember is to wear suitable footwear, wellies if you’ve got them!

The Christmas Tree Forest, Richmond

Another great farm for choosing and cutting down your own tree if you so desire! Tools are available at the farm or you can bring your own. A feature that they have at the farm is that they offer the service of delivery, meaning you don’t have to cram your tree into your car, you can have it delivered straight to your door.

South West Farms:

Rainbow Wood Farm, Bath

Spend the day walking through the farm with your family, taking your time in choosing the perfect tree for you to take home to put in your living room for the magical time that is Christmas.

Rainbow Wood Farm offers a variety of different Fir and Spruces as well as potted versions meaning a longer life for the tree.

Tregothnan Farm, Cornwall

Sip on homemade Tregothnan Farm Christmas tea as you walk around in search for your tree. You can choose from a variety of trees that are grown over a 10-acre span including Norway Spruces and Fir trees.

Midland Farms:

Crocker’s Christmas Tree Farm, Napton, Warwickshire

Enjoy a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie to get you into the Christmas spirit as you walk around this small, family-run Christmas tree farm. The farm provides you with a free net and twine when you are ready to take your chosen tree home!

North East Farms:

Keele Christmas Tree Farm, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire

You can choose your perfect fresh Christmas tree here at the family-run Christmas tree farm, including trees from Fraser Firs all the way to Norway Spruces.

After the enjoyable task of choosing your Christmas tree to take home, you can enjoy a snack and warm beverage at the cafe.

This farm is also great in the fact they also dispose of your Christmas tree once the season is over, though they dispose of it through hosting the first-ever UK Christmas Tree Throwing Championships. A great way to celebrate after the Christmas period.

North West Farms:

Ivy Cottage Tree Farm, Cheshire

Even though you can’t cut down your own tree here, you can easily reserve it and collect it near to Christmas to ensure that it is as fresh as possible to last over the festive period.

Though you can’t cut down your tree, you can spend your time choosing Christmas baubles, lights, stands and handmade door wreaths to go with your fresh Christmas tree.

Wales-based Farms:

Clearwell Farm, Michaelston y fedw, Cardiff

At the Clearwell family-run farm, you can choose from over 7000 trees growing in the field. They offer a wide range of Christmas trees ranging from Norway Spruces to Firs to Scots (Scotch) Pines.

Visitors are often advised to bring wellies or sturdy shoes for walking around the farm as it can get rather muddy and wet. If you have a pet pooch you can even bring them along. All dogs are welcome.

Scotland-based Farms:

Edenmill Farm, Blanefield, Glasgow

When it comes to picking a tree at Edenmill Farm family business, you not only take away your beautiful Fir tree but you can have it delivered if you really want! Saving you the hassle of taking it in your car.

To get yourself and the family into the Christmas mood, you can book to have breakfast with Santa just before he’s due in town to deliver all the presents! Kids can also visit the Farm Shop where available are freshly baked sausage rolls and delicious homemade cakes.

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