The holidays are approaching fast! For many yuletide fans, the perfect tree is crucial to making the season merry. It’s no wonder 25 to 30 million Christmas trees are sold every year!
Although there are heaps of artificial options, there’s nothing like the look (and fresh scent) of a real pine tree. If you decide to go with a traditional tree, here are some tips for locating, securing and transporting your festive new addition.
1. Find a holly jolly tree source.
First, you’ll need to find a nearby nursery or tree farm. Try the Tree Locator on the National Christmas Tree Association’s website. Just zoom into your state on the map to see options in your area. You can even search by vendors with pre-cut trees or select the “choose and cut” kind, if you decide to channel your inner Paul Bunyan!
2. Measure twice, cut once.
Before heading out, be sure to measure your tree’s future home. Your tree should have at least a foot of ceiling space overhead. You also need to account for the height of your tree stand!
Consider scale, too. A Charlie Brown Christmas tree might look awkward in a massive room, just like a supersized spruce won’t work in a micro apartment.
If you plan to haul your greenery inside your vehicle, be sure to note the amount of interior cargo space too.
3. Prep before you schlep.
Be sure to pack tarps or old blankets, as well as rope, bungee cords or ratchet straps. Gloves are always a good call too, to protect your hands from those pokey pine needles and sticky sap. Oh, and don’t forget to bring your holiday cheer!
4. Get ready for the ride home.
Once you find the tree you’ve been pining for, it’s time to prepare to take it home. Many places will wrap your tree in a net for you, which is a huge help when it comes to transporting it. If there’s no net, shake off the excess needles and wrap your tree in a blanket or tarp.
If you can fit the tree inside your vehicle, make sure you lay a tarp or blanket down first to protect your interior from sap and pine needles. If you’re tying the tree to the top of your vehicle, you’ll want to lay a covering over your roof to protect the exterior paint.
5. Secure and transport your tree.
If you’re going the roof route, lay the tree on top of the covering with the stump pointed toward the front of your ride. Next, use your rope, bungees or ratchet straps to securely attach the top, middle and bottom of your tree to your roof rack.
If you don’t have a roof rack, open your doors and wrap your fasteners of choice all the way around the top of your vehicle. Shut the doors, and you’re ready to be on your merry way. Note: using the strength of your doors is more secure than running your fasteners through your windows.
Go slow on your drive home and avoid highways if possible. Once you make it back with
your new tree, you’re ready to set it up and start decorating. We wish you and yours the happiest of holidays!