There are three common types of Christmas trees: Fir, Pine, and Spruce. Popular Christmas tree options for Fir trees include Balsam Fir, Douglas Fir, Grand Fir, Fraser Fir, Noble Fir, and White Fir. Scotch Pine and Eastern White Pine are recommended options if you prefer Pine Christmas trees. For Spruces, the best types of Christmas trees are Norway Spruce and Colorado Blue Spruce.
Let’s jump into the details of each tree to help you choose the right Christmas tree for this holiday season.
Fir trees look similar to Pine trees, but a major differentiating element is a unique attachment between their twigs and leaves, which look like needles. These traditional Christmas trees have a suction cup-like base that attaches their leaves to twigs. You can use these types of Fir trees as Christmas trees.
If there’s any description such as the Quintessential Christmas tree, it should rightly be bestowed on the Balsam Fir. Its scientific name is Abies Balsamea. This Christmas tree is endemic to Canada and the Northern region of the U.S, so it’s a typical winter plant. It’s one of my favorites because of its 1-inch long soft, rich green needle-like leaves.
This fresh tree can take on the shape of a cone or pyramid while growing. It’s the perfect Christmas tree for your outdoor space because it can grow as high as 90 feet. Its leaves and branches are flat, making it a common choice for holiday garland and wreath makers. To preserve the Balsam Fir, keep it away from hot areas. Otherwise, it would dry out irreversibly.
This living Christmas tree is one of the most likely Christmas trees you’ll see if you decide to take a tour of the neighborhood during the holiday season.
The Douglas Fir tree is another classic Christmas tree. It’s known to be one of the densest Fir trees. When this Christmas tree is trimmed to take on a conical shape, it can be too dense to hang heavy ornaments on. However, this barely stops it from being a Christmas favorite because it’s readily available and affordable. It’s one of the best-selling Christmas trees.
The Douglas Fir is the official state tree of Oregon, which adds to its popularity. This conifer is not regarded as a true Fir tree because it’s not under the Abies classification. It’s under Pseudotsuga. Several other common names for this real Christmas tree include Yellow Fir, Douglas Spruce, Douglas Pine Oregon Pine, and Douglas Spruce.
Douglas Fir is one of the tallest Christmas trees, and it can grow to a massive height of 300 feet in full maturity. This beautiful tree is endemic to Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. Unlike the Balsam Fir, it’s a tropical plant and can thrive in hot areas. A significant drawback of this tree is its lifespan.
Compared to other types of Christmas trees, it doesn’t last as long as other trees, so cut it a few weeks or days before the holiday season.
This Christmas tree is scientifically termed, Abies Brandis. Its dark green needles can grow up to 2 inches in length. Its branches and leaves are soft to touch, making it a better option for heavier ornaments. The Grand Fir is also known as one of the most fragrant Christmas trees. Its scent is a hybrid of citrus and the typical Christmas tree scent.
Grand Fir was made popular by native Americans who commonly used it because of its aromatic properties. They believed it prevented ailments and used it as an air freshener for their homes. I recommend the Grand Fir for everyone who want the double benefit of a beautiful Christmas tree and a fresh, pleasant scent in their home.
This tree is also referred to as Giant fir, Great Silver fir, Vancouver fir, etc. It’s native to the Northern region of California and the Pacific Northwest. It can grow up to 230 feet in height, making it one of the tallest Abies species in the world.
The Fraser Fir tree is one of the most popular Christmas trees. Its soft needles are silvery-green. Unlike the Douglas Fir, it’s not densely packed. This tree has some space between its branches, which makes it more suitable to decorate with fancy embellishments and ornaments.
These trees grow in a triangular shape, which makes them beautiful plants. I recommend you cut part of the trunk when you bring the Fraser Fir home from the tree farm. This will let the plant take in enough moisture. Also, ensure you water the plant daily so it will keep its leaves and scent for as long as the Christmas season.
The Noble Fir stands out thanks to its conical shape and blue-green needle leaves. Spikey bracts top off its signature look. The botanical name of this real tree is Abies Procera. It is endemic to the Northwest region of the Pacific Coast and the Cascade Range. This Christmas tree is also referred to as Red Fir.
The Noble Fir is the tallest fir tree because it can grow to an incredible height of 260 feet. This makes it the ideal tree for decorating industrial buildings or the outdoor space of a tall home. Its branches, though flexible, are sturdy, which makes them commonly used for making fresh wreaths.
Similar to the Fraser Fir, this Christmas tree should be partly cut at the trunk to let it absorb water. You must water it every day.
This specie is botanically termed Abies Concolor. It’s also referred to as the Concolor Fir. It’s native to the western region of North America. Its needle leaves are predominantly white but, in some cases, blue-green. Its conical shape is formed through the way leaves grow outward and upward.
The white fir is among those types of Christmas trees that come with a pleasant scent which you can get when you crush its leaves and branches. Unlike other firs, the white fir is more tolerant of little water supply. This makes it ideal for those who plan to travel during the festive season and won’t be able to regularly water the tree.
The Scotch Pine is a very popular Christmas tree in the U.K. It’s also called Baltic Pine or Scots Pine. Its botanical name is Pinus Sylvestris. This tree is endemic to Asia and Europe. I strongly recommend you to be careful if you intend to go for this tree because its needle leaves are very sharp.
The Scots pine can grow to a maximum height of 115 feet. This tree has an incredibly long lifespan, at least 150 years. Its leaves can grow up to 4 inches in length, and these leaves shed once in three years. Since it has great needle retention, you can easily ship it across the country.
Eastern White Pine
This tree is the most unique-looking pine tree. Its botanical name is Pinus Strobus. Other common names for the Eastern White Pine include Weymouth Pine and Northern White Pine. It is native to the eastern region of North America. It looks different from other pine trees because its ultra-thin needles grow in bunches and can be as long as 5 inches.
Its unique look makes it an easy target for making centerpieces, wreaths, and garlands. Despite its visual appeal, the flexible nature of its branches makes it unsuitable for heavy Christmas decorations. So if you’re using an Eastern White Pine, decorate it with lighter ornaments, garlands, and tinsel. It can reach a maximum height of 80 feet and half of that for its width.
Its botanical name is Picea Abies. The Norway Spruce is also referred to as the European Spruce. It is endemic to Europe’s Central, Eastern, and Northern regions. Despite its native origins, it’s very popular in the U.S. It can reach a maximum height of 60 feet and thrive in tropical climates.
This tree is a stunner but has a very short lifespan when cut from the tree farm, so I recommend getting it a week or a few days before Christmas. This tree requires soil that neither drains moisture too quickly nor holds it for long. I recommend watering it a minimum of once daily to ensure it stays alive.
Colorado Blue Spruce
This tree is the official state tree of Colorado. Its botanical name is Picea Pungens. The Colorado Blue Spruce is also called Green Spruce, White Spruce, or Colorado Spruce. This tree is native to certain states, including Wyoming, New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Idaho. In wild vegetation, this conifer can grow up to 75 feet in height. However, it hardly exceeds 60 feet in gardens or parks.
Solid and firm branches and a pyramid shape make up its typical physical appearance. This is one of the best trees to get if you want to hang heavy Christmas decorations on your trees. Another feature that sets this tree apart is its rich silvery-blue foliage with its sharp needle leaves.
Wear gloves to decorate the Colorado Blue Spruce to avoid injuries. This tree thrives in warm regions, so if you reside in a temperate region and want to grow this tree, plant it in the late winter or early spring.
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