Why buy a real tree?

A few key points about trees and the environment.

Real Christmas Trees:
1. support life by absorbing carbon dioxide and other potentially harmful gases and releasing oxygen;
2. while growing, stabilize soil, protect water supplies and provide refuge for wildlife while creating scenic green belts;
3. are grown on farms just like any other agricultural crop;
4. are re-usable (e.g., for wind breaks, and mulch);
5. are biodegradable, which means they are broken down and become nutrients for other plants; and
6. are often grown on soil that does not support other crops.

Artificial Christmas trees:
1. are made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a non-recyclable plastic, linked to adverse health and environmental impacts;
2. may also contain lead, and other toxins;
3. are typically used for only five to ten years before being thrown away; and
4. can remain in a landfill for centuries after disposal.

A 2009 study by environment consultants in Montreal concluded that the artificial tree has “three times more impacts on climate change and resource depletion than the natural tree.” The study was conducted by the consulting firm Ellipsos (now called Ellios, Contact: 514-341-3488, edormagen@ellio.ca).

In the end, it comes down to personal choice.  If you are going to buy an artificial tree, be sure to keep it for a long time.

Did you know that:
1. Christmas trees require significant attention while growing. The sides are trimmed on a regular basis to maintain the classic cone shape. Lower branches are also trimmed, to make "trunk room" to place the tree into a stand with a deep well for water.
2. After planting seeds, it will take three to four years for a seedling to reach a height of around 10 inches. At this stage, the seedlings are transplanted to the open fields where they will remain until harvesting.
3. It takes seven to 10 years for a tree to grow from a seedling to about 8 feet tall, ready to harvest, decorate, and enjoy.