It is essential that cut trees should be fresh when purchased. The needles should not be dull and dried up. The branches should not be brittle. The outer needles should not fall off if the tree is gently shaken.
- After you have bought your tree it should be kept outside in a cool shaded place, preferably standing in water.
- Before bringing the tree indoors it is an advantage if about half an inch is cut off the butt in order to open up the pores of the tree.
- Mount it in a water-holding stand or wedge it in a bucket with pebbles, small stones or screwed up newspaper, and place it away from direct heat.
- Keep the container topped up with water every day; you will be surprised how much it needs.
These are trees that have been carefully prepared so that they can be dug up with minimal disturbance the earth round the root system. Earth is retained by wrapping the roots in sacking or similar material. The roots should be kept damp and the trees, having had the sacking removed, should be potted in moist earth. These trees should remain fresh, retain their needles, and have a reasonable chance of survival if planted out after Christmas.