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      How to care for your Christmas tree

    • 1. At home, set your tree up in a stand with adequate water holding capacity as soon as possible. Most species can go 6-8 hours after cutting the trunk and still take up water without having to re-cut the stump. If it is longer than that, make a fresh cut straight across the bottom to remove a 1/2 to 1 full inch thick disk of wood from the base of the trunk. Don't bruise the cut surface or get it dirty. No additives are needed in the water. Never shave off the bark layer which is where the drinking occurs.

      2. If needed, trees can be temporarily stored in a cool location such as the garage. Place the freshly cut tree trunk in a bucket that is kept full of water. An average 6 foot tree can drink as much as 1 gallon per day!

      3. Set your tree up away from heat sources that can dry it out, such as fireplaces, stoves, heat vents, or sunny windows.

      4. Check the stand daily to make sure that the level of water does not go below the base of the tree. Some stands can still hold water even though the tree is no longer sitting in the water.

      5. Inspect light sets prior to placing them on the tree. If worn, replace it with a new set.

      Have a safe and blessed Christmas season.

    • How to cut a Christmas tree

    • Cutting a tree is easiest as a two person project. The cutter usually lies on the ground while the helper holds the bottom limbs up. As the cut is being made, the helper should tug lightly on the tree to ensure that the saw cut remains open so that the saw does not bind. The tugging force should be applied to the side of the tree opposite of the cut.

    • How to mount your Christmas tree to the roof of your vehicle

    • 1. With the cut tree still on the ground, secure twine to base of tree trunk leaving two long lengths of twine (approx. 5-8ft.) dangling loosely from the tree trunk base. (These will be used later)

      2. Place protective blanket on top/outside roof of vehicle to prevent scratches.

      3. Lay tree horizontally on top of blanketed car roof with tree trunk base pointing forward. One length of twine should be hanging down on either side of the vehicle.

      4. Open doors and pass each length of twine through the front interior doorways of your car and tie ends tightly to each other above your head on the interior underside of the roof. If the vehicle has roof racks, you can tie the tree to the roof racks instead.

      5. Repeat this process with a second piece of twine going through the open doors of the back seat area.

      6. When the tree is secured to the vehicle properly, doors will operate as normal. In the closed position, doors will be clamped down on the twine.

      Caution: Do not tie your doors shut by passing twine or fasteners through windows while doors are closed. This may result in a safety hazard where doors cannot be opened quickly for emergencies.

    • What to do with the Christmas tree after the holidays

    • 1. Stand it up in your yard near a window where you can observe it. Hang bird food from it and watch the birds enjoy your "instant" yard tree. Make your own bird food ornaments by attaching a string to a large, stiff pine cone (available at the farm). Stuff it with peanut butter, then roll it in bird seed and hang a bunch of these from the tree. It's a yummy treat for the birds.

      2. Do you have some pancake syrup? Carefully drizzle some on the branches, then pour some birdseed on the drizzled syrup and watch the birds enjoy the sweet treat.

      3. Cut up branches and lay the pieces as a mulch over your flower beds.

      4. Take it to a local park that recycles the tree by chipping it and use the mulch to enhance the trails in the park.

      5. If you have a pond, placing it in the pond will provide a good environment for the fish to breed in the spring.

      As a living plant a Christmas tree benefits the environment by absorbing carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. After the Christmas season the tree can continue to benefit the environment by being recycled in one of the ways described above. Do your part and give your real Christmas tree "second life" by recycling.

    • Decorating Your Christmas Tree

    • Keep your Christmas tree away from sources of heat (fireplaces, heaters, heat vents, direct sunlight). Lowering the room temperature will slow drying, resulting in less water consumption.

      Lights - Use only UL approved lights and electrical cords and devices on trees. Check electrical cords and lights for damage prior to placement on the tree.

      Placement of ornaments - Hang all ornaments that are breakable, have small, detachable parts or metal hooks, or that look like food or candy on higher branches where small children can't reach them. Green floral wire, which can be twisted firmly around branches, is a great way to hang fragile ornaments. More durable Christmas ornaments like shatterproof or knitted ornaments can be placed on lower branches.

      Pets - Keep pets out of the room in which the tree is placed, especially if you can't be there to supervise. Cats are known for leaping onto Christmas trees, especially when pursued by another pet. Use a ceiling hook to keep the tree from toppling. Both cats and dogs can knock down and break glass ornaments, then cut themselves on the pieces. Pets may also gnaw on electrical cords for Christmas tree lights. So hide them when possible, or help prevent injury by purchasing a pet-proof cover for the wiring.

      Avoid using artificial snow sprays, to which some people are allergic and may cause lung irritation if inhaled.

      Turn off tree lights when you go to bed or leave the house. Use only UL-approved electrical decorations and extension cords, and check to be sure no cords have frayed since you last used the lights.

    • Christmas Tree Recycling Information

    • Real Christmas trees are biodegradable and can benefit the environment even after providing family memories during the Christmas season. One of the most common ways to recycle a Christmas tree is to have it chipped into biodegradable mulch for landscaping. Some communities have a pick up date or drop off point to recycle the trees. Check with your local tree farm or community about local recycling programs.


      City of Indianapolis:

      Drop-off locations for tree disposal are:

      Broad Ripple Park (1610 Broad Ripple Ave.) south lot

      Ellenberger Park (5301 E. St. Clair St.) west of pool in main parking lot

      Garfield Park (2432 Conservatory Drive) MacAllister Center

      Gustafson Park (3110 Moller Road) near the front entrance

      Krannert Park (605 S. High School Road) north parking lot

      Northwestway Park (5253 W. 62nd St.) near the recycling bins

      Perry Park (451 E. Stop 11 Road) soccer field parking lot

      Riverside Park (2420 N. Riverside Drive) tennis court parking lot

      Sahm Park (6801 E. 91st St.) soccer field parking lot



      City of Greenwood (Proper):

      Street Department crews will be out for the month January to pick up Christmas Trees. Please remove all ornaments and tinsel from your tree and place them curbside for free pickup. Since we will be recycling the trees, please do not bag them.

    • Selecting Your Christmas Tree

    • Be sure to know what size (height & width) of tree you need.

      Measure your ceiling height where the tree will be displayed. Trees in the field look smaller than they really are.

      The type of tree you choose depends on your personal preferences. Click here to to discover tree varieties and their characteristics.

      To do a freshness test gently grasp a branch and pull it toward you. Only a few needles should come off in your hand if the tree is fresh. Shake or bounce the tree. Some loss of brown needles is normal but falling green needles is a warning sign that the tree is dry.

      Once you have purchased the perfect tree keep it fresh throughout the Christmas season.

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