Previous   Next

Do you use a real or fake Christmas tree?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on November 21, 2006

Browse the archives

Photo of Lori TenPas

“I use a fake one because it’s fiber-optic and we love the changing colors. I do put in some natural elements like branches and dried sumac and flowers.”

Photo of Bob Parker

“I don’t use a Christmas tree anymore. I live alone and go to visit family. It becomes too much of a hassle to buy and decorate it. It’s easier to go and look at someone else’s tree.”

Photo of Delisa Drewes

“A fake one, because there are no splintering needles to vacuum up. It’s snow-covered and silvery blue. It’s very unique.”

Photo of Devin Scrogum,

“We’ll probably be using a fake one. I’d rather not cut down any more trees than need to be cut.”


jonas 11 years, 6 months ago

If taking some homeless guy, washing him off, making him stand in the corner for three weeks, wrapping him in green felt, covering him in tinsel, pinning glass balls to his skin, sticking candy canes in his ears, and making him wear the angel hat means it's a fake tree then yeah, we use a fake tree.

/don't worry, we do feed him.

/or her. equal opportunity

Linda Aikins 11 years, 6 months ago

A ceramic one! I agree with Devin about cutting them, but wow, it is so beautiful and fragrant. Not Devin, the trees.

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

Fake. But not an oddball fake tree, like Lori's fiber optic tree or Delisa's snow-covered silvery tree. We use, you know, a tree that tries to look like a tree.

trinity 11 years, 6 months ago

real deal! buy 'em every year from a civic organization in my hometown-they use the $$$ to take children shopping for presents for themselves&their families. and the trees they bring in are goorrrrrrgeous! and i'm sure the trees are farmed&harvested, not maliciously whacked down out of some protected tree preserve in the middle of the night and spirited away hidden in the back of a truck. ;)

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Dang! Py doles out the moola for her tree! Frasier fir...excellent choice! If I were buying a real tree...that is the only option I would consider. That's right, I'm now a tree snob. :) In reality, I go w/ the fake. I don't have to sweep up needles and I don't worry about it drying out and catching fire.

Now lets argue what is better for the environment. Thousands of old fake Christmas trees in the landfills, or real ones getting turned into mulch. Hmmmm....I may have to start rethinking this fake stuff.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

So, what does a frasier fir go for these days? I see that TOB likes 'em, too. Ya'll are makin me want one real bad.

trinity 11 years, 6 months ago

i don't remember what type i buy...not sure if it's frasier or not; but the needles on it are long, lush, really thick, and actually soft! and-it stays that way with proper care and does not dry out. an added plus, with that proper care-doesn't shed hardly any needles at all. heck my grandkids make a far bigger mess with shredded wrapping paper, holiday candy&cookies, etc etc etc! ;)

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

Careful Jonas, I offended bea last night because I mentioned the "homeless" without genuflecting:)

Ceallach 11 years, 6 months ago

For many years I had real trees, now I have a very nice imitation Frasier Fir (week after Christmas sale at Hobby Lobby:)

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

A fish story: TOB, speaking of crappie, I caught a white crappie in the neighbor's pond. Didn't have a tape measure with me but it went from tip of hubby's middle finger to the tip of his elbow. It was a BIG crappie. Threw her back. Caught her on my last cast of the day.

Christine Pennewell Davis 11 years, 6 months ago

will prob. get a fake this year we just go back and forth. Had a huge prelit my parents gave me a few years ago but it bit the dust so that was that. I like both some years I ust have to have a real one this year I am not feeling the whole clean up the mess in me so fake it is.

sister 11 years, 6 months ago

Is it true tomorrow is World Orgasm for Peace Day? Usually I'm not up on World or National-whatever days, but this sounds like fun.

chapdaddy 11 years, 6 months ago

I'm w/ ljworld reader. I prefer the Festivus pole. No distracting ornaments or tinsel.

It's a Festivus miracle!

alm77 11 years, 6 months ago

We had fake trees (yes, we went through more than one) when I was growing up and now I make sure that we have a real tree. I love the smell, and the look. It's our family tradition to go and get one a day or two after my daughter's birthday. We don't decorate for Christmas until her day has been celebrated.

Nate Poell 11 years, 6 months ago

No tree, no lights, no muss no fuss. Just like to walk around downtown and look at the lights. They're really nice this year.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Sister, Since today is "False Confession Day," maybe someone told you that tomorrow is "Orgasm for Peace Day" to try to guilt you into participation??? (Just remember your vow of nun-liness.) Tomorrow is "Natl. Go for a Ride Day" so I see how the two could go together...

TOB, hubby has no stumps (anywhere) and the fish story is true. I'll come up with a false confession later.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 6 months ago

When I was a kid, we always had real trees, but they were much, much cheaper back could get a 7 foot tree for about $4.

Of course, they were always from a tree farm, and always pine trees, so that's what I got used to for Christmas trees. When I see someone with a cedar or Douglas fir, it just doesn't seem like a Christmas tree. Give me a scraggly little pine tree with homemade garlands of popcorn, cranberries, and green and red paper any day.

But with real trees, you can't keep them up for nearly as long, you have to water them all the time, and even then they might dry out before Christmas. After a few years of watching precious family ornaments fall off of a dry tree (no matter how much I watered it) and shatter, or having to sweep up pine needles, I got a fake tree.

I've only had two fakes trees for my entire adult life. Had the first one, a huge one, for over 20 years. I've had the current one for five years now. Still looks beautiful. If I want the scents of a Christmas tree, I can always get pine or cedar or fir sprigs to put up in my apartment.

The ironic thing is that even though I got the fake tree in the beginning so those nice glass ornaments wouldn't get broken, now I have a cat who considers anything on the tree as a kitty toy, so now all of my ornaments are plastic anyway. And they're on their 10th season now. I'm just such a creature of habit.

It's pretty nice, now that they've had those little miniature lights for so long. Back in the days of real trees, with those 7 1/2 watt bulbs that put off enough heat to burn when touched, the fire danger was a lot worse.

I think I'm too old...I remember a time when those miniature lights cost about $10 for a 100 light set, and now you can get them for $2 or less!

OldEnuf2BYurDad 11 years, 6 months ago

Fake tree = Fake Christmas.

Get the baby Jesus a real tree, for crying out loud! He was born in a barn and likes the smell of recently cut crops.

We always go live and last year cut one at a farm. After that experience, we'll always cut live trees. They smell great, and the cats really enjoy the climbing much better.

jonas 11 years, 6 months ago

Oldenuff: Are you saying that you have the baby Jesus at your house?

My parents always had a real Christmas tree. But my neighbors eventually ran out of trees.

Charla Welch 11 years, 6 months ago

My older sister is allergic, so we had fake trees growing up.

Now it's also fake, because it's only 3 feet tall. Nice and small and easy to deal with. Even going to try some little plastic ornaments this year to see how many the cat knocks down to play with.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

I've had a real tree twice in my life. Once, 'cause I got one free at work, the other time we were re-modeling the house and also had an 18 month old baby. The hubby cut a small cedar on our property (he views them as weeds). We strung it up outside from the arbor over the deck (we didn't own a tree stand), and we put on lights. It snowed that night and the tree was naturally "flocked." It was the most beautiful tree, ever! The lights shining through the snow were gorgeous.

Let me add that, as a child, my mother felt compelled to put up one of those "metallic" Christmas trees. Us kids whined so much that that was the only year for that tree. 20 years later she sold it to an antique store for a good sum. (No accounting for taste!)

sgtwolverine 11 years, 6 months ago

We do have it nice for trees up here in Michigan. There are several tree farms within a few miles of my house, and they have wide varieties of trees. I guess I always took it for granted, but the comments here about getting certain trees in Kansas makes me realize I should appreciate it!

My family had real trees for a number of years, but when all my siblings (I'm the youngest of six) moved out, got married and had kids, I think the appeal of a real tree was reduced for my parents. When the house was full, it was always an event to go out and cut the tree together; with everyone else out and making their own traditions, I think my parents decided to put their time and energy (and money) elsewhere. So artificial it is. I like real trees, but I really don't mind the artificial tree. It just wasn't the same cutting the tree without a bunch of us around.

Kat Christian 11 years, 6 months ago

Fake Tree BUT it looks so real it actually fooled my brother-in-law who is so adament at using a real one. So many reasons to use a fake tree: - less mess - no needles to clean up - no having to dispose of it - don't have to water it - with the type of heat home have today they dry out way too quickly. - saves on the extra expense once it is purchased. - no more trees being destroyed for the sake of a temporary trinket. Besides whether we have a tree or not Christmas is in the heart not the eyes. MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL and may God bless you this season.

average 11 years, 6 months ago

I always liked our family tradition. My parents planted a couple of Firs just off the porch when I was young. Kept them trimmed down, though eventually near 8 feet tall. Put a few strands of lights on them, outside, and they stayed happily in the ground.

jonas 11 years, 6 months ago

Pywacket: So, how does that compare to god killing kittens?

Christine Pennewell Davis 11 years, 6 months ago

my my my I love the funny ones it makes ya glad when you can laugh at the thread instead of shake your head:)

Ken Miller 11 years, 6 months ago

Hanukkah Bush. It's real...and it's spectacular.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

Py, your hubby duped you! NOP day is ony once a year. But, no, I don't think it cheapens the day to observe it more fequently. (As long as you don't leave the decorations up year round.) ;)

ohjayhawk 11 years, 6 months ago

Growing up, we always had a real tree. When I set out on my own, I moved to an artificial (i.e. "fake") tree. Now that I'm married and we have our own house (i.e. "not renting), I'd like to go back to real again. It may not be this year, but definitely next year.

mom_of_three 11 years, 6 months ago

We have a fake tree. I would like to have a real one, but I am afraid the animals would drink the tree water and get sick from the stuff you have to put in the water for the tree. I do like the smell of a real tree, though.

juscin3 11 years, 6 months ago

First year hubby and I were married, we had a fake tree. Then the next 2 years we had a real tree. The first time we had the real tree, that was my first time ever having a real tree. I didn't know how to take care of it. Luckily, I didn't kill it! Didn't realize how much water it had consumed. The 2nd yr we moved while having the real tree, put it in the garage and by the time we got it moved into the house, it was dying. :( We did keep it though. After that, we went back to fake ones. The one we have now, looks more like a real one. Glad they updated on them! Remember when I was little, the fake ones, looked so bad with the branches so spread out you could see the darn pole! LOL Have a GREAT THANKSGIVING!

beatrice 11 years, 6 months ago

Neither -- We are not big fans of the commercial enterprise known as Christmas in our house, and I still don't believe that if we don't overextend our budget on items made in China then the terrorists win.

Thinking about it now, I realize that I truly am against the crass commercialization of this Christian holy day and fully support the idea of putting Christ first in this celebration. If that were to happen, all us non-Christians could save some money by ignoring the whole affair, kind of like we do at Easter. (Bah. Humbug.)

Ceal, not offended last night, nor even bothered. I just wanted to point out that if people gave more attention to the homeless situation in our country than they do to what type of specialty coffee drink to order each day at Starbucks, then we might have a better country. Besides, you were the one claiming that the homeless should be shipped to Iraq and used for target practice ... or something like that, you evil, evil person. ; )

sublime 11 years, 6 months ago

oldenuf2befullofsh!t--you said,

"Get the baby Jesus a real tree, for crying out loud! He was born in a barn and likes the smell of recently cut crops." WTF??

Linda Endicott 11 years, 6 months ago

I prefer a real tree, since that's what we had when I was a kid, but it's no longer practical for me. Since I leave my tree up for a couple of months (anytime after Nov 1), a real tree would dry out.

Besides, I can't afford a real tree anymore. They cost too damn much.

SpeedRacer 11 years, 6 months ago

When I was growing up in the South, we always had cedar trees, very full and fragrant. It was many years before I saw any kind of pine as a Christmas tree when they started trucking them in from the north. Now I just stick my little 3' fake tree on a table and spend a small fortune on candles and scents to try to duplicate the smell.

beatrice 11 years, 6 months ago

Damn, R_I!

It is one thing to not participate, but the constant reminders are enough to drive any strong-willed individual over the edge! Even if "I don't give in" personally, there will be somebody at the store ringing a bell asking for money, stores playing bad music about snowmen and partridges in trees, artificial snow sprinkled in store windows here in Phoenix, and people trying to shove a cup of egg-nog in your hand (like humans are intended to drink such matter).

Who needs this? Christmas is impossible to avoid due to crass commercialization. If you ask me, it is those who believe who must take back their holy celebration by refusing to shop at the stores that trivalize their beliefs by equating it with Tickle Me Elmo dolls or Playstation 3 video-game players -- but leave me out of it! (Nothing spongee about that!)

By the way, if you care to send money to the "Help Bea avoid the holiday season by sending her to the Bahamas Fund," you are free to do so.

sunflower_sue 11 years, 6 months ago

TOB, just measured the hubby. 18.5 inches! Pretty impressive, indeed!

Sean38 11 years, 6 months ago

Yeah, if I had a house I'd light it up so that you can see it from space like how Daniel DeVito does in the new Christmas movie.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.