Monday, December 11, 2017

7 Tips for Getting the Best Christmas Tree

Karla Salp
WSDA Communications

Grand fir Christmas trees

Whether it’s a long-held tradition or your first tree hunt, the trip to find the perfect tree can be an exciting experience.

We recently visited Sprouffske Tree Farm in Rainier to talk with owner Shelley Sprouffske about growing Christmas trees.

She shared her top tips for selecting the best tree if you’re purchasing one and how to prepare for a visit to an actual tree farm or lot.

7 Tips for Getting the Best Tree

  1. Get a realistic expectation of tree height – Trees look much smaller in the field than they will in your house. Take some sort of measurement so you know how tall and wide your tree can be.
  2. Dress for a farm – Remember you’ll be on a farm. It’s likely to be dirty and wet, so dress in layers and wear appropriate footwear. 
  3. Call ahead – Make sure the tree farm allows you to cut your own tree. Find out exactly when they are open, whether they have saws to lend or you need to bring one, etc. Ask if the farm bales the trees to make them smaller to transport home.
  4. Bring a broom – Yes! Bring a broom or pole to hold up the bottom branches to make it easier to cut down your tree.
    Example of a good cut, close to the ground
  5. Cut the tree close to the ground – When cutting the trunk, cut close to the ground so you have as much trunk to work with as possible when you get home. You can always cut off more of the trunk if it is too tall, but you can’t add it. 
  6. Bring twine or rope – If you are hauling your tree home on top of the car, bring twine or rope to tie the tree to the roof of your car. 
  7. Cut and water – Whether putting your tree up immediately or in several days, when you get home, give it a fresh cut and put it in water to make sure your tree stays green all season long. 

Meet a Christmas tree farmer

Shelley Sprouffske and her son
Want more tips about keeping your tree green, what to do with it after Christmas or how to pick out a great tree from a tree lot? Check out the full Facebook live interview with Shelley below.

If you are interested in visiting a tree farm in your area, click here to download a statewide list of licensed Christmas tree growers.

Photo of Shelley Sprouffske - Washington State Christmas Tree Farmer