The traditions behind fake and real Christmas trees

Every year, Thanksgiving and Black Friday pass by in a blur, and the Saturday after, I find myself in the back of my dad’s truck on the way to a tree farm. 

It’s my family’s tradition to walk around the farm gazing at the many trees in a multitude of sizes. We meet up with my aunt and uncle and every year, my aunt and I laugh at my mom as she claims she is having her “Hallmark moment.” My brother and sister fight over who gets to cut the tree down, though it always ends up being my dad. Then, we find the perfect tree, my dad cuts it down, and we all go out for lunch. 

My family and I claim real trees are the only way to go, but many families think fake trees are superior. The debate of fake vs real trees is one I, strangely enough, have a strong opinion on—real trees will always have my vote. 

I understand the many reasons behind fake trees: ease, tradition, pets, and allergies. Almost all of my friends have a fake tree—one claims they have it for the ease of setting up. Fake trees don’t make as much of a mess as real trees do; they don’t die, meaning you can have the same tree for more than one year. Another reason to have a fake tree could be allergies. If someone is allergic to pine trees, it makes sense for them to buy the artificial counterpart. People could like fake trees better because fake trees are less likely to be destructed by pets because they are sturdier and man-made. And just like going to cut down a real tree is a tradition for my family, setting up a fake tree could be a tradition for another family. 

However, the memory’s behind the tree and the holiday itself is what is most important. ”

Real trees on the other hand have a more intriguing tradition, and you get a new tree to match the new year. Real trees also have a smaller carbon footprint, every time a tree is cut down, ten new ones are planted. It has been my experience that real trees bring families closer for the holidays. The cold, seeing Santa Clause, the hot chocolate, and the debate over which tree to cut down are  all part of the holiday traditions my family holds.

Real trees may make more of a mess, but in reality, it is a lot less of a hassle to clean than many believe, it takes a matter of seconds to vacuum up straggling pine needles once every two days. And yes, the tree requires water everyday, but that is simply not much work and the tree can survive when a day is missed. Even though the workload is slightly larger, real trees still hold my heart. 

No matter what choice of tree is made, tradition is created or honored. My family’s tradition is different from other’s traditions. However, the memory’s behind the tree and the holiday itself is what is most important. 

Whether an artificial or a real tree adores my living room, the time spent with my family celebrating the upcoming holiday will be remembered more than what kind of tree I had. Whether it may be to the top of my ceiling or a Charlie Brown stub of a tree, it won’t matter as I will cherish the holiday cheer I shared with my loved ones more than the tree itself.