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Mother and son decorating their Christmas tree with an electronic fire in the background

REAL OR FAKE? THE PROS & CONS OF LIVE VS. ARTIFICIAL HOLIDAY TREES

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It’s time to set up the Christmas tree. But with that comes the age-old debate: real or fake? Here are some points that will help you make your decision.

Cost

The holiday season is an expensive time of year, with people spending money on presents, decorations, and charitable donations. Live Christmas trees often cost significantly more than artificial trees – and of course, they only last for the season. If your budget is tight, consider an artificial tree. Even those that are comparable in price with live trees will save you money in the long run.

Environmental Impact

Contrary to a once-popular belief, buying a real tree does not contribute to deforestation. On the contrary, most trees are grown on farms, which means buying one supports small businesses in your region. For those who prefer to buy a permit and chop down their own tree on federally managed land, you can be assured that those areas are highly regulated and that Christmas tree harvesting benefits the other trees by giving them more space and access to sunlight.

Artificial trees, on the other hand, have a huge carbon footprint from production to shipping. They also tend to end up in landfills, whereas real trees are biodegradable. If environmental impact is a deciding factor for you, opt for the live tree.

Household Footprint

Another important detail to remember when it comes to artificial trees is that you’ll have to store it all year-round. While a live tree visits for a season and then is discarded, once the season ends, you’ll need to pack up and store your artificial tree until it’s needed once again. If space is an issue, think twice before purchasing an artificial tree.

Time & Effort

One of the benefits of having an artificial tree is that they often come with lights already installed. All you have to do is unpack the tree, fluff its branches, and plug it in.

A live tree will require you to decorate it from start to finish, including stringing those pesky lights and hoping you get them draped symmetrically. Further, a live tree will drop its needles as they dry out, necessitating a regular sweeping.

If you want to save time and effort, consider an artificial tree.

For more tips on doing the holidays right, visit the Olympus Solaire blog.

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