Living Christmas Trees
Living Christmas trees are an alternative to either fresh-cut or artificial trees as they can be planted in the yard after Christmas. There are a few things to be aware of, however, if you plan to use a live tree this year. First, choose a variety suitable to be used as a live Christmas tree, and a variety that is also suitable for this area. Some suggested varieties would be Scotch or Austrian pine, Colorado blue spruce and Balsam fir. Be sure you have space in your yard to accommodate a grown tree of the kind your select.
Proper handling is important if you want your tree to survive for outdoor planting. A few simple rules to follow are:
- Buy a tree in a container or one that is balled-in burlap. Choose one that is not too big and is easy to handle.
- If possible, prepare the hole in advance when the ground is easy to dig. Dig a hole at least half again as big as the root ball. Keep the hole and dirt dug out from freezing by lining it with straw and covering with plastic.
- Move the tree indoors gradually to a garage or porch first, then indoors. Keep it indoors no longer than about a week. It should be kept out of direct sunlight and away from heat vents.
- Use only miniature lights. Because of the heat that larger lights give off, they could damage your tree.
- Water your tree, but only enough to keep the root ball from drying out. Too much water along with the warm temperatures may break the tree's dormancy and encourage new growth, which would only suffer winter damage when set outside again.
- After the holidays, take the tree outside gradually, just as you brought it in.
- Plant in pre-prepared hole. Containerized trees could be stored indoors in a protected area and the base insulated with straw and then planted the next spring. They should be kept moist throughout the winter if there is not sufficient snowfall.
Give the Gift of a Teton Wildflower Tour
| Get prepared! In 2011 the Friends of the Garden membership will be heading to Jackson Hole, Wyoming for a 3 day/2 night guided experience of the flora of Grand Teton National Park. From the top of Rendezvous Mountain alone, at a staggering 10,450 feet, there are more than 100 species of alpine wildflowers to enjoy and photograph. Give yourself or loved one a truly unique holiday gift this year and book your seat today. (Photo credit Richard M. Anderson 2010)|
Click here to learn more about and register for the 2011 Teton Wildflower Tour!