How to Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm

When we start noticing Christmas tree sales spring up in shopping mall parking lots, at home and garden centers and near local convenience stores, everyone knows that Christmas is on its way! In this age of the Internet, Christmas trees can even be ordered online. While trees bought this way will still be beautiful, an alternative worth considering, depending upon your location, might be visiting a tree farm, and getting the tree right out of the ground!


  1. Image titled US National Christmas Tree looking S 2012
    Measure your ceiling height and tree stand width. You'll need these measurements to help make sure you don't get a tree that is too tall for your house, or too wide (in the trunk) for your tree stand.
  2. Image titled Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm Step 1
    Find a local Christmas tree farm. Ask around, or search the web for the phrase "Christmas tree farm" or "U-cut Christmas trees" along with the name of your city or town. Call ahead to make sure the farm is open to the public.
  3. Image titled Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm Step 2
    Make your visit to the tree farm a family affair. Consider it an outing, because many tree farms usually supply many activities such as wagon rides, as well as special holiday treats. All of these make the entire process enjoyable, exciting and memorable.
  4. Image titled Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm Step 3
    Get instructions for cutting the tree. Every tree farm is different. Some may require you to pay up front. Some will shake and wrap the tree for you. Some will load it onto the car for you, some won't. There are often different prices for different kinds of trees (Douglas fir is cheapest, grand fir is more expensive but is best for scent, noble fir is generally the most expensive).
  5. Image titled Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm Step 4
    Make sure the tree you want to get will fit comfortably in the room and location you have chosen to set it up. Use a tape measure if necessary. Check the bottom of the tree to make sure there is enough space between the end and the lowest branches to make a slightly diagonal fresh cut.
  6. Image titled Buy a Christmas Tree from a Tree Farm Step 5
    Inspect the tree you choose to determine if it appears green and healthy with a fragrant smell and moist, flexible needles. Make sure there is no evidence of drying or browning. Avoid trees with broken branches or damaged bark. Bounce the tree lightly on its cut end if you can, and shake it. This will usually result in an inevitable little sprinkling of pine needles, but if this results in a shower of needles then look around a little more.


  • Set your tree as far away from a heat source (radiator, fireplace) as you can.
  • When choosing a tree farm, try to find one that will let you leave the tree in the ground until you are ready to set it up and decorate it. Some farms may let you pick a tree as early as the 1st weekend in November, much too early to put it up. The farm marks the tree as sold and you can go back to pick it up at your convenience. Be warned, however, that some people don't honor your marking, and your tree might be gone when you come back for it.
  • Invest in a good tree stand.
  • When living in a tropical environment, try to find a tree that was grown in warm weather. The tree will be used to the heat and will last longer.
  • Cutting an extra quarter inch off the bottom before mounting your tree will greatly help water absorption and ensure your tree lasts as long as possible. Be sure to make this final cut just before placing it in water. If it is exposed to the air for too long, the vessels will become blocked.
  • Measure your space before you leave home: it's easier to let the farm's staff cut your tree to size, if necessary.
  • Tree will keep fresher if you never let it go dry. Put it up right away and keep it watered constantly.
  • If you live in a colder zone, when you bring the tree home, leave it in the garage for a few days to acclimate the tree to the warmer inside temperature.
  • Your tree will look much smaller outside than it really is. Take a reference stick along: Stand on the floor of your room with a broom or yardstick held high over your head so it touches the ceiling. Mark how high your hand can reach on the stick. Do the same thing with your chosen tree to see if it's the perfect height. Remember you will likely trim a bit from the top branch for your star and a bit from the bottom for freshness. Allow for tree stand height and you can often get the perfect size.
  • Walk all the way around the tree and visualize how it will look in your spot to make sure you like it . also if you have a small house make sure its not that big for you house. The branches will tend to drop over the first couple days from upward sweeping to straight out, exposing some bare spots and sharing more of your room!
  • Try a tree farm close to your house. You don't want all the needles falling off on the ride home!


  • Check for anything that may have chosen your tree as a home (spiders, small animals, etc.) before you bring it in your house.
  • Do not wait too long to purchase your tree, or the best ones will have already been sold. If you're not ready to set up your tree early, you can keep it in a bucket of water in the garage until the time is right.
  • Be careful not to over-trim your tree before installing it in your house. A few artful cuts can quickly turn into a hack-job.

Article Info

Featured Article

Categories: Featured Articles | Christmas Trees