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Pick the best tree for you

Scotch Pine
If you want to showcase the natural beauty of your tree instead of piling on the decorations, this is the one to choose. The scotch pine's full shape looks beautiful on its own (and because the branches are tightly packed, there isn't a lot of space for ornaments.)

Balsam Fir
This is the tree for those who like to pile on all sorts of trimmings. It has enough space between its firm branches to house ornaments in a variety of shapes and sizes, from Chrismtas balls to longer, dangling ecorations. The balsam fir's short, flat needles are rounded at the tip and form a very soft, featherlike spray of foliage. They are deep green in color and are banded with white underneath.

Douglas Fir
Do you enjoy being greeted by the fresh scent of your tree when you walk into your home at Chrismtastime? Then try this one; it has a robust fragrance. But when it comes to trimmings, the branches don't have the firmness to hold heavy ornaments.

White Pine
This tree has a lovely fragrance and a rather airy appearance, with soft, feathery bunches of slender needles (they com in bundles of five and range from 2 to 5 inches in length). The white pine's long branches point upward slightly at the tips. Like the Douglas fir, this tree usually isn't able to support heavy decorations. Also, of the four trees that are described here, this one will probably shed its needles the soonest.

    How to Make It Last

  • Cut off 1/4-in. slice from the base of the trunk; this will help the tree to drink in water.

  • Place the tree in a water-holding stand immediately (get one that can hold 1 to 2 gallons); make sure that there are always at least a few inches of water in the stand.