Christmas trees don’t need to be used exclusively indoors; we have created this guide to help you make the most of Christmas trees for your garden. From tree selection to decoration tips and disposal, we have everything you need here.
Our top 3 Christmas trees for your Garden
Let’s start with the party piece, the Christmas tree itself. There are many different types of real Christmas tree that will be suited for use in the garden, however not all real Christmas trees can be replanted and survive the winter. So, our first tip is to pick out a pot grown Christmas tree.
The Norway Spruce pot grown tree is probably the best variety for an outdoor Christmas tree as they are available in a range of sizes from the miniature 2ft all the way up to a full-sized 5ft real Christmas tree. This makes them incredibly versatile and able to be used in the front garden at full size to become the talk of the street, or dotted around the back garden amongst the gnomes to give them a Christmas they will never forget.
This pot grown tree comes in the same size range as the Norway Spruce but its pines are a little darker, giving it more of a cool, relaxed and mysterious feel. The Fraser Fir is perfect for those more inclined to use white decorations and lights as the rich dark green foliage accentuates a more minimalist decoration.
The Nordmann Fir also comes in all sizes including a full-size 5ft version, and it also makes a wonderful indoors real Christmas tree due to its traditional shape. Outside it also sparkles with all the lovely feeling you get from a Christmas tree and you will love how easy it is to decorate!
Why pot grown trees?
Pot grown trees are best for outdoors Christmas trees as they have their root system intact within the pot. This means they can be left in their pots and grow naturally or they can be re-potted or even planted. Depending on the size of tree that you’re purchasing this can be a simple task (for smaller trees) or a difficult task (for full-size trees).
Because pre-cut trees only have their base and lack a root network, they don’t make for ideal replanting. In fact, many purpose cut trees will die just as quickly when planted as they would when they are free-standing in your living room. The unknown factor in this is the outside weather conditions, and while evergreen tree varieties are notoriously hardy, a tree without its roots will be extremely susceptible to outside weather.
It is for this reason as well as longevity that we recommend pot-grown Christmas trees for use in your garden.
Decorating an outdoor Christmas tree
Outdoor Christmas trees come with three big decoration problems that if you get wrong, could result in a dreary unhappy-looking tree. Get it right and plan to avoid these common pitfalls.
You may have heard people express concern about how much it is costing to illuminate a house exterior or an outdoors Christmas tree. You may be familiar with the “imagine what their electricity bill looks like?”
The truth is, outdoor illuminations will cost a bit more money than usual over the Christmas period but if you’re careful, this increase in cost won’t be too noticeable. Ensuring that your lighting is energy efficient will be the single-most important step when reducing your electricity bill. If cost is a concern, opt for LED bulbs that are marked as being energy saving or energy efficient as these will be a godsend when it comes to your next electricity bill.
Another top tip is to earmark specific times of day when the lights are switched on, most councils across the UK now switch off street lighting, you can mirror this switch off to save your electricity bill even further.
Most outdoor Christmas trees rely solely on lighting for decoration. This is for a number of reasons but mostly because other decorations are easy to steal during the night and because other Christmas tree decorations are not always weatherproof.
If you’re decorating your tree in an area where you are sure theft won’t be an issue or if your tree is in the back garden, you can buy purpose-built real Christmas tree decorations that are designed to be used on outdoor trees. After all, every tree needs a star or fairy, right?
An outdoors Christmas tree can blend into the background after a while because they’re not as easily decorated as indoor trees. Purchase lighting that has different settings and functions to get a few more decorative options and keep your tree on the tips of everyone’s tongues. Most decent lighting comes with sequential patterns and flashing lights but there’re loads more settings to discover.
Disposal of your real Christmas tree
If after Christmas you’re dead set on throwing your tree away, then make sure you read our wonderful guide to Christmas tree disposal and recycling. If you want to keep your tree for next year then the good news is that you can – and next year it will be even bigger.
This is because pot-grown varieties will grow happily throughout the year and providing they are watered and taken care of like any other trees or plants you have in your garden, they can live for a very long time.
Re-potting your tree is important and as it grows larger and its root network grows, it will outgrow its pot. The pot it is supplied in is normally good for 12 months. Beyond that you will need to re-pot it every 12 months or so. Better still – planting it in a place with sunlight and nutritious soil will mean that you need to do a lot less and it will have space and freedom to grow naturally.
All pot grown Christmas trees have the chance to become full size evergreen trees providing you give them the right care and attention. They also can last a family for many years to come which means that being environmentally friendly doesn’t mean you have to shell out on a new tree each year!