Whether you're considering buying your first real Christmas tree or looking for something a little different this year, you'll need to consider which type is best for you. Deciding what variety of tree to choose can be a little overwhelming. But there are a few factors to consider that will help when choosing the perfect tree for your family.
Follow our guide to the different Christmas tree varieties to help you choose the right tree for you.
Different people look for different things in a real Christmas tree. Some prefer a strong aroma, while others might focus on the tree's colour and shape. For a lot of people, simple care is the most important factor, with sturdy branches and excellent needle retention being essential.
How to decide which variety of Christmas tree is right for you
These are all factors you need to take into account before choosing your real Christmas tree. The good news is that there is no right or wrong answer. Much of the decision will be down to personal preference, which is great as it means you end up with a Christmas tree that you love.
From Nordmann Fir to Blue Spruce, the types of Christmas trees people choose will vary depending on space, scent and appearance.
Browsing the internet for real Christmas trees can help you get an idea of what kind you like, from looks to features. To save you time, we've got a breakdown of the best real Christmas trees, as well as their features. Depending on what style you like as well as your home will depend on which one is best for you.
Types of Christmas trees
When choosing a real Christmas tree for the festive season, it's good to know the differences between the varieties. Every type of Christmas tree has pros and cons, and what is right for one person, may be entirely wrong for someone else.
Real Christmas trees come in a range of varieties and it's good to know the differences between them.
You can find the specifics on each Christmas tree type on their product pages, from needle retention to size and fragrance. In the meantime, here is a guide to the most popular Christmas tree types on our site:
From Norway Spruce to Fraser Fir, here is our guide to the most popular types of Christmas trees.
This traditional Christmas tree has a classic shape and a gorgeous pine fragrance. The Norway Spruce has been popular in the UK since Victorian times and is the ideal option for those aiming for a classic look.
Norway Spruce trees boast dark green foliage with firm needles that are perfect for hanging heavy ornaments. It has a conical shape and dense foliage that gives the tree a full and bushy appearance.
The Norway Spruce is a great alternative to other common types, like the Scots pine, as its dense branches and dark green foliage make it last right through Christmas.
These trees tend to drop their needles a little sooner than some other varieties, to avoid this make sure you water your Norway Spruce daily. A Christmas tree stand that can retain water is best, so if you forget for a day your tree will stay looking fresh.
Norway Spruce is the quintessential Christmas tree species.
The Nordmann Fir is currently the most popular Christmas tree in the UK. It has a pleasing symmetrical shape, glossy dark green foliage and a delicately fresh scent.
One of the main benefits of this Christmas tree variety is its ability to hold needles well. It's often referred to as the 'non-drop Christmas tree' and will remain green and bushy throughout the festive season.
The needles are large and soft, making this a great choice of Christmas tree for families with young children, staying fresh for up to 5 weeks.
The Nordmann Fir is a traditional tree that lasts the whole holiday season.
Fraser Fir trees are famous for their deliciously sweet citrusy fragrance and are quickly becoming one of the country's most popular Christmas trees.
It features sturdy branches that are angled upwards (perfect for hanging heavy decorations), and silvery-green foliage that adds a little extra festive sparkle. The dense foliage of the Fraser Fir makes for a full appearance and the soft needles are perfect for little ones to help decorate.
This variety of tree has a classic appearance and a slimmer look than other types of real trees. They're not quite as symmetrical in shape as trees like the Nordmann Fir, but this adds to their charm, however, you can trim down the branches for that picture-perfect look. Fraser Firs tend to hold needles well, so you won't have to spend much time vacuuming around the tree.
Fir Christmas trees are one of the most popular types of Christmas trees in the United Kingdom, and grow at our tree farms locally!
The Fraser Fir is the type of Christmas tree most often put up in the White House.
The Fraser Fir tree has strong branches and can hold heavy decorations easily.
If you're looking for a tree that is something a little special then the Korean Fir is the right tree for you. The fragrance alone is worth bringing the tree indoors for. A Korean Fir Christmas tree has a fresh forest aroma that will fill the room with festive cheer.
These trees have a compact shape with a high needle density producing a full appearance. Relatively new to the UK, Korean Firs are related to Nordmann Firs but are generally a little slimmer. Their wide, rounded bright green needles have silvery-blue undersides that glisten in the light.
Needle retention on Korean Fir trees is excellent, as you'd expect from a relation to the Nordmann Fir. The needles are soft enough to let the kids loose decorating the tree without risking scratches and prickles.
Part of the fir family, Korean Fir Christmas trees tend to draw admiration from your visitors.
Bringing a Blue Spruce real Christmas tree into your home creates a striking focal point. As its name would suggest, the Blue Spruce bears unusual steely-blue foliage that turns dark green later in the year.
At Christmas Trees Direct, we supply pot-grown Blue Spruce trees. These are known for their hardiness and survive well in the garden throughout the year.
Blue Spruces are rigid and hold their needles fairly well. The needles are quite sharp and exude a lovely fresh pine scent.
Blue-green needles and excellent needle retention make the Blue Spruce a great choice for the Christmas season.
Picea glauca conica
The Picea Glauca Conica is a dwarf variety of Christmas tree that is perfect for small spaces. Also known as the 'Mini Christmas Tree', it is available in heights from just 1-2ft up to 5-6ft, making it great for smaller gardens or balconies.
This type of tree has a symmetrical shape with dense, upright foliage. The short mid-green needles start to turn a lovely shade of blue-green as the tree matures.
These charming little trees are extremely versatile and look spectacular decorated with lights.
Picea Glauca Conica is the ideal real tree for small spaces.
Things to take into consideration
Focusing on what you're looking for in a Christmas tree will help to narrow down your choices. Some things, such as the height of your ceiling, are set in stone but there are other factors that you may be more willing and able to compromise on.
Planning how your tree will look will help you pick the right type.
Here's what you need to consider when choosing your real Christmas tree:
Let's begin with the most obvious thing you need to think about. And that's the size of your room.
Whether you want a contemporary or traditional Christmas tree, the look will be thoroughly spoiled if it's not the correct size.
Before you even look at varieties, you should measure your space. Bear in mind that the width of the tree will be around half the height, so make sure you have enough floor space if you're veering towards a taller tree.
Real Christmas trees always look best when you choose the right size for your space.
At Christmas Trees Direct, we can provide trees in a selection of sizes to suit your needs. As a general guide, the most common size of Christmas tree bought in the UK is 5-6ft.
Do you have a preference for the type of needles on the tree? Sharp needles can help keep pets away from the Christmas tree, while softer rounded needles are more child-friendly and help prevent scratches.
Some types of Christmas trees have stiff needles, while others produce soft needles.
Needle retention is another thing to think about when choosing your tree. Think about how long you want the tree to last indoors. If you plan to decorate on 1st December, you'll need a tree with excellent needle retention to last until the big day. On the other hand, if you prefer to decorate in mid to late December, needle retention is less of an issue.
If you want a classic look to Christmas, the Norway Spruce with its dark green needles is perfect, however if you are looking for something different then the Blue Spruce is the one for you.
Although most cut trees come with dark green needles, each one has a slightly different colour. Think about the style of your decorations, are they silvery or glittery? If so, the Korean Fir with its deep green foliage and silvery blue tint will suit you best.
The shape of your Christmas tree can complement decorations. For example, a traditional shape will look fantastic adorned with classic baubles and lights. Rounder shapes are ideal for adding rustic charm to your festive decor.
The natural shape of a Christmas tree is one of its endearing qualities.
Different types of Christmas trees have slightly different shapes, and it's worth taking a little time to consider what would look best in your home.
For many people, the authentic fragrance is one of the main benefits of buying a real Christmas tree. While the look of a real tree can be replicated, we've yet to come across an artificial tree that smells as good as the real deal.
Different types of Christmas trees have different aromas.
The Christmassy scent varies a lot between different types of Christmas trees. The size of your room and your own personal taste should help you decide.
Is the room large enough to cope with a strong aroma?
Would you prefer pine or orangey fragrance?
The nostalgic scent of a real Christmas tree is something special and can add to the festive feel of the season. Plus, an authentic forest scent beats a synthetic festive fragrance hands down!
Lifestyle is an aspect of having a real Christmas tree that people often forget to factor in. Around the festive period, we're usually all busy shopping, socialising and visiting family and friends. And that's on top of working full time and running a household.
This is something to take into account when choosing your tree. Will you be around to water it frequently enough?
Regular watering helps maintain needle retention but may not gel with a busy lifestyle.
Many people are surprised at how much water a Christmas tree drinks, particularly in the first week. If you plan to be out of the house for extended periods or you simply don't think you'd remember to check the tree's water levels often enough, then opt for a tree that doesn't dry out too easily, or buy a Christmas tree stand that will retain a lot of water.
When browsing our range, you'll notice that different varieties of Christmas trees have different pricing points. And, obviously, prices increase as the trees get larger.
Some Christmas tree types are more expensive than others.
When choosing your species and the size of a tree, it makes sense to have a cost in mind that you're willing to spend. Your Christmas tree is the jewel in the crown of your festive decorations and is the first thing guests will notice when they come in, so it's worth spending some cash on.
More than ever, people are trying to minimise their carbon footprint, especially where the amount of waste generated by Christmas celebrations is concerned. One of the best things you can do to boost sustainability around the festive period is to ensure your tree is sourced responsibly.
Essentially, this means buying a tree from a reputable source. Ensure the tree farm provides a habitat for birds and other wildlife and that the trees are planted and harvested in the best interests of the surrounding environment.
A real tree from Christmas Trees Direct will always be responsibly sourced from sustainable tree farms.
Checking your tree has been grown in the UK is another way to minimise the impact it has on the environment. It's all very well buying a tree that will have another planted in its place, but that doesn't matter if your tree has been flown halfway across the world to get to you.
All our Christmas trees are ethically sourced and are grown in the UK. They are tended all year round by our expert team and meet the highest growing standards.
Choosing a tree from a sustainable tree farm can make it more eco friendly.
Freshly cut or pot grown?
Real trees can be bought either freshly cut or pot-grown, and both have advantages.
Freshly cut Christmas trees
Most people will opt for a freshly cut real Christmas tree. Simply put, these trees will arrive without roots, having been cut at the bottom of the trunk. They are easy to care for and will last for one festive season.
Like cut flowers, freshly cut trees require frequent watering to look their best throughout the festive season. You'll need a tree stand to hold the water and to stop your tree from toppling over.
Freshly cut trees are by far the most popular types of Christmas trees.
Pot grown Christmas trees
These trees have been planted into pots as seedlings and are supplied in the pot they've been grown in. Once they arrive you will want to plant them in your garden or into a new pot to give them room to grow.
Pot-grown trees are living trees with their root system intact. This means they can be moved into the garden when the festivities are over and brought inside again next Christmas. Alternatively, you can plant your tree out in the garden when you're finished with it and string some lights on it at Christmas for years to come.
A pot grown tree can be planted in the garden to grow to its full potential.
Pot-grown trees will last a few years and can be used again and again. If you're looking for a classic Christmas tree that is eco-friendly, then pot-grown trees are definitely worth considering.
They do begin to wilt if kept indoors for too long so are best brought in for just a couple of weeks at a time.
Pot grown trees are real Christmas trees that can be used again and again.
Pros and cons
All varieties of Christmas trees have their pros and cons. The trick to picking the right type of tree for you is to ask yourself some key questions:
How long do you want the tree to last?
Do you prefer a classic appearance or something a little different?
Do you have small children who could get hurt by prickly needles?
Are you bothered about scent and, if so, which fragrance do you prefer?
Trying to choose between a Norway Spruce or a Fraser Fir? Ask yourself these key questions.
Choosing the right tree
Gathering the family around to decorate the tree is one of the highlights of the festive season, and having a real Christmas tree makes it all the more magical.
Choosing the right variety of real Christmas tree may seem tricky at first. But once you've considered the space you have and the qualities you're looking for in a tree, you'll have a better idea of the perfect real Christmas tree for your home.
Then all you need to do is browse the types of Christmas trees for the ideal one, select the right size, and we'll deliver it straight to your door.