Christmas tree debate : LUSENET : Country Families : One Thread

We live in a sea of cedar trees-so naturally, we thought we would always have a nice live Christmas tree. Last summer, however, the kid's allergist said he strongly recommended against live trees. Being July and hot as blazes, I didn't think about it. Shopping yesterday, I priced artificil trees-GOOD NIGHT! I had no idea they were so expensive-I guess the cheaper ones are long gone. So, I'm wondering-do I pop the money(that is NOT in the budget)or go out in the back yard and chop one down and hope no one gets sick-or forget the whole Christmas tree thing? (I'd hate that- but we did it before when we were in a teensy rental house with no Christmas trees in the back yard.)

I know I know, I shouldn't have waited this long, but I honestly didn't think of it.

-- Kelly (, December 11, 2001


Kelly, did ou kids have reactions to the live trees you've had before? Can you give vitamin c or somehting else if reactions are not bad? Will you grumble everytime you put up an artificial one-about the money it cost or about it being artificial? Have you asked the rest of your family what they want? Is the tree put in a room where the kids spend most of their time? some people put their trees on their porch. We haven't had a tree the last couple of years, the first year I didn't miss it but the second one I did, this year, I doubt we'll have room cause of all the unpacked boxes.

-- Cindy (SE. IN) (, December 11, 2001.

I bought my tree at k'mart for $39.99 at about this time last year it is six and 1/2 foot and looks great. You can probably get one at walmart for the same price. It is worth the money cause they last for a long time and you don't have to worry about buying one every year.

-- melinda (, December 11, 2001.

If you don't want a live tree, and don't want to spend the money for an artificial tree, can you use a large "branch" or small sapling type tree from the woods. Just cut it off, put in a bucket of sand or rig it up somehow, then decorate the bare branches. I have seen some like this that are GORGEOUS! I hope you understand what I mean.

-- Melissa (, December 11, 2001.

Kelly, I understand your reluctance at hacking down a living tree just for a Christmas tree, try what we have done for many years, we find the prospect as tree tops, taller trees that fit the shape requirements ( these are not as full as commercial trees, but by the time they are decorated, they are beautiful) of a Cristmas tree.

We cut the top six or seven feet off, and the tree more than fills in the now empty top space the following years with many new branchs, matter of fact, I've been able to go back and reharvest off those same trees in subsequent years from the filled in tops.

If that won't work cause there are none that are tall enough, go ahead a harvest one that is in an area that you would rather not have a tree in anyway. The first three days are the worst for allergy causing outgassing of fumes/cedar oils, but after that the smell does not seem to bother us. Keep the tree somewhere where the smell won't affect the children's allergies until that three days passes, but some place as warm as the house, it's the heat that draws out the oils and smell.

-- Annie Miller in SE OH (, December 11, 2001.

This is totally unscientific, but worth a shot. Cedar trees are not blooming right now, so cut the tree, hose it off real good to get rid of any excess pollen leftovers, then take it in when dry. I know there may be an allergen component to the sap, but it would seem the biggest culprit is the pollen. Enjoy the tree, but watch the prices at WalMart and KMart as it gets closer to Christmas, and after. The price WILL drop, believe me. I got my tree after the holiday a few years ago for less than half price. I was also talking to a friend who picked up a 6ft artificial tree the other day at the dump, still in the box, for $4.00! You might also try thrift stores and yard sales. Good luck and God bless.

-- melina b. (, December 11, 2001.

Of course, the best time to buy an artificial tree is probably right after Christmas, or at least late in the season, but watch the sale adds. I would not put up a cedar with kids having allergies. Cedar must surely be the worst there is to bring them on.

-- mary (, December 11, 2001.

I'd go with the second-hand shops and thrift stores. Also check "Thrifty Nickel" type ads if you have any in your area. Our local version is called "The Penny Grader"; I have also seen a "Penny Saver".

-- Cathy N. (, December 11, 2001.

Hmmmm, this comes from a full-fledged member of the medical establishment, so beware..I am about to voice an unpopular opinion....ahem.....since you are surrounded by Cedar trees, unless your children wear masks outside, they are already exposed to cedar pollen, etc.....I see absolutely ZERO harm (UNLESS your kiddos have severe asthma) in dragging in a nice tree for this Christmas, themn hitting the stores after the holidays for a great bargain price on an artificial tree.....allergists often are prone to advocating a rather sterile environment for us takes severe allergies to truly have a problem with a tree in the house for three weeks.....if your children have a terrible problem with asthma, etc..then bite the proverbial bullet and get an artificial tree, otherwise, enjoy and pass the benadryl around once a week..God bless.

-- lesley (, December 11, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ