In the next few weeks thousands of families in our area will be putting up Christmas trees as part of their holiday traditions. A couple decades ago, displaying a Christmas tree left consumers with only one option, a real evergreen. But in today’s world families are faced with another option, an artificial tree. There are numerous factors such as preference and tradition that help families decide which option is right for them but many families find themselves asking which option is better for the environment.

The answer is surprising to some, but buying a real tree for the holidays is more eco-friendly than an artificial one. But what is even more surprising is that homeowners actually have a third option when it comes to Christmas trees, potted trees.

Why Are Artificial Christmas Trees Bad For The Environment?

  • The creation of artificial trees uses fossil fuels and releases carbon pollution.
  • Artificial trees are non-recyclable.
  • Artificial trees are non-biodegradable, meaning they will never be broken down by the environment but instead clutter landfills for eternity.
  • 85% are imported from China, according to the National Christmas Tree Association (NCTA), adding to their overall environmental footprint.

Why Are Real Trees Eco-Friendly?

  • Real trees are recyclable and are reused in erosion prevention and natural habitats. Read more about Christmas Tree Recycling.
  • Real trees are biodegradable.
  • Contrary to popular belief Christmas trees are grown on tree farms not harvested from forests. These tree farms preserve green spaces and are responsible for absorbing carbon from the air.
  • For every tree bought approximately 3 new trees are planted.
  • Grown locally decreasing their overall environmental footprint.

What Are Potted Trees And Why Are They The Most Eco-Friendly Option?

Potted trees are live trees with their roots still intact. They can be purchased from local garden centers and are kept inside and decorated like any other Christmas tree for approximately a week after which they are planted outdoors and grow happily for the rest of their lives. These trees can be planted on your landscape or donated to parks and watersheds. There are even Potted Christmas Tree Companies that will deliver these trees to your home then pick them up after New Years and plant them throughout local communities. Potted trees provide all the benefits of real trees without the guilt and environmental harm of cutting down a tree.

Learn more about Potted Trees:
10 Reasons to Buy a Potted Christmas Tree
Live Christmas Trees
Living Christmas Tree Guidelines

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Samantha Huff

Samantha Huff is the marketing coordinator at RTEC Treecare. She enjoys learning about the technical aspects of trees and the insects and diseases that prey on them. She hopes that these articles can help homeowners gain control of their tree and shrub maintenance by being aware of the signs and symptoms of unhealthy trees.

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