To Tree or Not To Tree

By | December 3, 2012 at 7:27 am | No comments

Photo by Eva Rees via flickr

When tradition meets sustainable living, things can get complicated. From the food to the decorations, holidays can get a little tricky to navigate while trying to reduce your impact. That’s why, a few years back when I started to take eco-living really seriously, I felt conflicted about getting a Christmas tree. I really, really love holidays (as I’ve stated before), and I was pretty bummed at the idea that my living room wouldn’t smell like the interior of a lumberjack’s truck for the next two months. Yep, two, I’m one of those people.

So, I looked into it. Obviously, stick with that’s good for you, but here’s my argument for getting a live Christmas tree every year:

  • Generally (unless you drive out of state, I guess?) you’re supporting local businesses. Tree farms like the Double K farm in Lake Elmo, Minnesota use sustainable farming practices that keep their impact low and allow them to reuse root systems to keep their farming green.
  • While plastic trees seem like a good idea in theory, most consumers report throwing away their non-recyclable, non-biodegradable, plastic Christmas trees made out of PVC product. That’s bad news for the environment and your wallet.
  • When you’re done with the tree, you can mulch and compost it and reuse it in your lawn/garden/compost pile.

If none of those ideas quite sway you to live trees, you can also get potted trees that last up to five years and, if healthy, will flourish once replanted after it outgrows its pot. O


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