Top 10 Choices for Christmas Trees
From Carol Nufie, Christmas Guide to Interior Decorating.
1) Fraser Fir
The Fraser Fir may be the perfect holiday tree. Its attractive 1" needles are silvery-green and soft to the touch. Because there is space between the branches, the Fraser is easier to decorate than some trees. The firm branches hold heavier ornaments. The trees grow to almost perfect shapes, and as long as the cut tree is kept properly watered, the Frasier Fir has excellent needle retention.
2) Noble Fir
The Noble Fir is deep green in color and has unusually lovely branch shape. Boughs of this tree are often made into fresh wreaths. Its branches are sturdy yet the needles are not too sharp to decorate easily. Like the Fraser Fir, the Noble's branches have good spacing between branches so it's easy to hang ornaments on them.
3) Colorado Blue Spruce
A Colorado Blue Spruce has a nice pyramidal shape with strong limbs that can hold heavy ornaments. The Blue Spruce is known for its lovely blue foliage which can also appear silvery. If your decorating scheme does not include this bluish tint, this tree may not be right for your home.
4) Grand Fir
The Grand Fir has a glossy dark green color with needles that are 1 to 1 1/2 inches long. This tree is soft to the touch and may not be able to hold heavier ornaments. It's a pretty tree htat grows as high as 300 feet and it's becoming more popular for homes.
5) Balsam Fir
The Balsam Fir is a beautiful dark-green color with airy, flexible branches that may not be able to hold heavy ornaments. It has an attractive form, it holds its needles well, and gives off a pleasant fragrance for your home.
6) White Fir (or Concolor Fir)
The National Christmas Tree Association notes that "Needles are usually 1/2 to 1 1/2 inch long, pointed or notched at the tip, bluish-green when young turning dull green with age.... As a Christmas tree, white fir has good foliage color, a pleasing natural shape and aroma, and good needle retention.
7) Eastern White Pine
Branches from the White Pine are often used in garlands, wreaths, and centerpieces due to their long, feathery, soft needles. Though it is a beautiful tree, branches can be a bit too flexible to support heavier decorations. Its lush fullness also makes it difficult to squeeze in ornaments. The White Pine needles last a long time when properly watered.
8. Douglas Fir
A Douglas Fir is beautiful Christmas tree with soft shiny green needles. It may be difficult to decorate if the branches have been sheared into a perfect conical shape, leaving too little space between branches to hang decorations. If this variety of tree is available, you might want to take an unbreakable ornament with you when you buy a tree to see if you can put decorations on it. Choose a Douglas Fir that is freshly cut and keep it well watered.
9) Scotch Pine
You'll want to wear gloves when decorating a Scotch Pine, since its needles can be sharp as pins! Also, due to heavy shearing, there may be little space between branches for ornaments. The Nat'l Christmas Tree Association notes "the Scotch pine is known for its excellent needle retention and good keepability. It resists drying and if permitted to become dry does not drop its needles."
10) Norway Spruce
The Norway Spruce is a beautiful tree but does not hold its needles well, and should be purchased just just a week or so before December 25th. The National Christmas Tree Association notes that the "overall color of Norway spruce is fair to excellent, but needle retention is considered poor unless the trees are cut fresh and kept properly watered."