Home » Blog » Going Green with Evergreens Going Green with Evergreens December 6, 2013 Christmas, Green, Holidays, Recycle, Seasonal, Trees, Van Putte Gardens, Winter Bringing a live tree into the home for Christmas is a holiday tradition that has survived since its origins in the 1500s. Today, decorating a Christmas tree is a special family activity that really kicks off the season for most folks, and as a bonus to their great smell, fantastic natural variation and all-around festive-ness, live trees are environmentally-friendly too! At first glance, cutting down a tree to bring it inside for a few weeks and then toss doesn’t sound like the most eco-friendly thing to do. However, let’s take a look at the facts: Douglas Fir Christmas tree farm (Photo courtesy of http://bio124.wikispaces.com/Douglas+fir). 1. Christmas trees are generally not forest trees — they are actually a renewable, natural product grown like many other crops. Seedlings are replanted as soon as trees are cut, keeping a steady quantity of trees growing all the time. 2. Trees produce oxygen and clean the air for us humans, so growing Christmas trees on land that may otherwise have been used for less environmentally-friendly purposes is a great natural benefit for air quality and the environment. And when the energy and carbon footprint of manufacturing artificial trees is taken into account, live trees win every time. 3. You can recycle your Christmas tree free of charge in Greece! Just put your tree out at the curb without any decorations or bags for your normal brush pick-up week, and the town will pick it up for free and chip it for mulch. Be sure to remove anything like wires, ornament hangers, nails, etc. to avoid damaging the mulching equipment. Or if you don’t want your tree sitting on the side of the road, bring it back to us here at Van Putte’s in the same way — no decorations or bags — and we will be happy to recycle it here! Potted Trees If you’re still unconvinced a cut live tree is for you, maybe it’s time to give a potted tree a try this year to be even more eco-friendly. It’s a bit more work but you’ll get to keep Christmas all year round after it’s planted in your yard! With a potted tree, introduce it from outside to inside over 3 or 4 days by placing it in a garage or enclosed porch, then place it in the coolest part of the room. Only leave potted trees inside for about 7-10 days, and then re-introduce them back outdoors via the same method (garage or enclosed porch for 4-5 days) to prevent shock and needle drop. We are open every day until Christmas (including Christmas Eve) and still have hundreds of cut and potted trees for Christmas 2013! When you go tree-hunting through our huge nursery, you’ll discover Douglas, Fraser, Concolor, Balsam, Canaan and Grand Fir trees from 4 to 11 feet tall, all easy to view with a hot chocolate or coffee in hand 🙂 Plus, our Green Thumb elves will fresh cut, drill for Stand Strait stands, bale the tree, and load your car at no charge! We look forward to seeing you and your family and remember: for gardeners, Christmas colors are green and greener 🙂 P.S. Our last post mentioned our annual Christmas Open House this weekend (Sat/Sun the 7/8th), with hot drinks, treats, and special sales on all sorts of holiday items. It starts tomorrow; hope to see you there!