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Dublin: 12 °C Wednesday 23 October, 2019
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'A pint a day': How to make sure your real tree stays fresh until Christmas this year

The Irish Christmas Tree Growers Association estimates 44% of us will buy a real tree this year.

EVERYTHING FROM CHOOSING the right tree, finding the right space in your home and keeping it well watered are just some of the ways we can make sure that our Christmas tree lasts longer.

shutterstock_167658038 Source: Shutterstock/Peter Gudella

According to a survey conducted for the Irish Christmas Tree Growers Association, 44% of people will have a real Christmas tree at home this year, while almost two thirds say they like the feel of a real tree in the house.

TheJournal.ie spoke to Karen Morton, from The Killakee Christmas Tree Farm in the Dublin mountains, to find out how you can ensure that tree stays green and healthy throughout the Christmas period.

“There’s a perfect tree for everyone,” she explained, “but getting it home can be a worry”.

Wrapping the tree in netting before it gets transported is an effective way to make sure the branches don’t get damaged en route. When you bring the tree home, there’s a few things that need to be done.

Kids in Forest Source: The Killakee Christmas Tree Farm

“To keep the tree smelling as nicely as it does, you need to bring it indoors immediately,” she said. “Definitely put it into water and keep it sheltered. Don’t leave it sitting.”

Next, the base of the tree has to be cut to allow it to be mounted onto a stand. The best stand for this is a water stand, but a large bowl full of water near the tree can help if you opt for a different stand.

“Leave the netting on until it’s in situ on the stand to prevent damage to branches,” Morton said. “Bring it through the door base-first, and make sure it’s submerged in water within eight hours of being cut.”

Keeping it away from heat sources is important too, but Morton acknowledges this is not always easy in Irish homes. “It is a plant and it needs to be treated as such. Don’t put it next to a radiator, or at least have it off when people aren’t in the room.”

And, as for maintenance to make sure the tree stays green and fresh ahead of the big day, at least a “pint a day” of water is required.

“Keep an eye on it,” Morton added. “Make sure the base is covered and make sure the bowl is replenished.”

The busiest period for buying Christmas trees is set to take hold over the next week, and Morton expects demand to persist right up to Christmas eve.

“Then we’ll put up our own tree,” she said.

Read: Poll: When’s the right time to put up your Christmas tree?

Read: Gardaí to step up patrols targeting Christmas tree thieves

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About the author:

Sean Murray

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