December 3, 2019

How to Care for a Cut Christmas Tree

By Denise Crawley

Christmas trees are in! It’s time to go over a few tips on how to choose the perfect cut Christmas tree and how to keep it beautiful and healthy throughout the holidays.

Tips for purchasing a fresh cut Christmas Tree

Know the height of your ceiling!

You don’t want to buy a tree then get it home and realize it is too large for your room.

Measure the height of your ceiling and don’t forget to give yourself a little extra room for the stand.

Bring your stand with you

The best way to make sure your Christmas tree will fit properly into
your tree stand is to simply bring it with you when you go to purchase your cut Christmas tree and try it out.

-Make sure the trunk is not too large for the stand

-Confirm that you have removed enough of the lower branches so that the trunk rests securely on the bottom of the tree stand.

Bang the tree on the ground

Prior to bringing your cut Christmas tree into your home, pick it up by the trunk and bang the base on the ground a few times. This will remove the dead, loose needles outside, and leave you with less of a mess inside your home.

Make a fresh cut to improve water intake

When you buy your cut Christmas Tree, the nursery will more than likely take a fresh cut off the base of the tree.

Make sure to get your tree in the stand with water within 2 hours of it being cut or the sap will dry over and prevent the tree from absorbing water.

A fresh cut Christmas tree can soak up a gallon of water the first day, so make sure to keep the stand full.

How to Transport your fresh cut Christmas Tree

If you don’t have an enclosed trailer or a pickup truck, you may have to bring your Christmas Tree home on top of your car.

Make sure the trunk is facing forward to prevent the needles from being blown off.

If you are driving for more than 15 minutes, or at a speed of 60 mph or more, the wind may encourage the fresh cut to reseal and you should recut it when you get home.

It is best if you can protect the entire tree by wrapping it in a tarp or by taping a plastic bag over the trunk to prevent the fresh cut from drying out.


A properly watered tree will last longer and is less of a fire hazard. So, make sure your tree stand is always full of water.

Do not allow the water level to drop below the bottom of the trunk or the sap will form a seal and prevent the tree from absorbing moisture.

Refill the stand with water daily for the first few days, as a freshly cut tree can consume 1-2 gallons of water, then as needed.

Many new studies have determined that additives do more harm than good to your fresh cut Christmas Tree, as they decrease a tree’s moisture retention.

Caution: A dry tree is a fire hazard.


Do not place your tree near heat sources such as fireplaces, radiators, heat vents and direct sunlight as the heat will dehydrate your Christmas tree.

By following these simple, proper care techniques, your fresh cut Christmas tree will last at least 5-6 weeks.

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Thanks for reading and have a great holiday and a Happy New Year!