Real vs. Artificial Christmas Trees: What’s the Greener Choice?

It’s the centerpiece of the largest vacation of the yr for a lot of American households: the Christmas tree, the point of interest for events and presents, replete with favourite ornaments and lights.

Some cherish the scent of an actual tree and the custom of bringing it residence, whereas others desire the tidier and simpler possibility of the plastic selection.

But which is best for the surroundings? Here’s a have a look at a few of the central claims — and the frequent misconceptions — in that debate.

Don’t really feel unhealthy about slicing down a tree for the vacation. Christmas bushes are crops grown on farms, like lettuce or corn. They will not be reduce down from wild forests on a big scale, mentioned Bert Cregg, an skilled in Christmas tree manufacturing and forestry at Michigan State University.

A five- or six-foot tree takes just below a decade to develop, and as soon as it’s reduce down, the farmer will usually plant at the least one instead. The bushes present many advantages to the surroundings as they develop, cleansing the air and offering watersheds and habitats for wildlife. They develop greatest on rolling hills which are usually unsuitable for different crops and, in fact, they’re biodegradable.

In the meantime, he encouraged people to reuse trees and to adorn them with LED lights, which save energy.

“We’re focused on making our trees reusable as long as possible,” Mr. Harman said. “I hope that our trees are in use 20 or 30 years later.”

The preference for real trees is strongest in the Northeast and along the West Coast, data from the A.C.T.A. shows. Mr. O’Connor said that younger, more environmentally conscious consumers — the same ones who buy organic produce at the grocery store — are increasingly embracing real trees. And some families enjoy visiting farms to choose and cut their own trees.

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