1. Before you even leave the house, figure out where you’d like to place the tree. Try to avoid spaces that are too close to heat sources such as a vent, radiator or fireplace, and out of heavy traffic areas where it could easily be bumped or dishevelled.
2. Once you’ve found the perfect spot – measure both the floor area and ceiling height so you’ll know exactly which tree will be the perfect fit. While you have your measuring tape out, you may want to measure your tree topper, if you’re using one, to avoid any last minute tree chopping. If you are using a tree stand you already own – double check it to see if it has an weight or diameter restrictions – a toppling tree is never a good thing.
3. Pack your measuring tape, some heavy gloves, an old blanket or some cardboard (to protect your car from sap and pine needles) and some strong twine or rope (in case you need to strap the tree to the roof of your car).
4. Once you get there, take a look around at the different types of trees (White Spruce, Douglas Fir etc) each type will have a unique look and scent.
5. The earlier you put your tree up, or the longer you leave it up, the fresher it will need to be. To test the freshness of your free, run an enclosed hand over a few branches – the needles should not come off easily. Bend the outer branches a bit, they should be pliable not brittle. If they are the tree is already too dry.
6. After the tree is at home and unwrapped, trim the base one extra inch before putting it into your tree stand.
7. Your tree is alive and likely very thirsty. Once the tree is up (and before decorating), fill the reservoir of your stand with lukewarm water. Contrary to many old wives tales, it is not necessary to use sugar, ginger ale, aspirin, or any other fancy concoctions, plain water is all you need. These other mixes can eventually develop a film which will prevent the tree from being able to absorb water.
8. Check the water level in your stand regularly and re-fill as needed to ensure the tree stays fresh and hydrated. To keep it extra fresh, turn the temperature down a few degrees in the room where the tree is, and ensure your tree is kept away from any heat sources.
9. Now that you have the perfect tree, check out some of these unexpected decorating ideas to create a look that’s as unique and fun as you are.
Some food for thought: