Christmas Tree Care

With the right knowledge and care, your Christmas tree can stay fresh longer than you think! The key ingredient to freshness is water and our guide will help you ensure your tree is getting as much water as it needs.

  1. Give your tree a fresh cut, removing at least ½ an inch of the trunk’s base. We’re happy to give any cut Christmas tree purchased at Ken Matthews Garden Center a fresh cut at the time of purchase.
    • If you choose to give your tree a fresh cut yourself, make the cut perpendicular to the trunk. Do not cut at an angle or a v-shape, doing so can make it more difficult to keep the tree in the stand and will reduce water intake.
  2. Get your tree into water as soon as possible. Most trees can go a few hours after cutting and still be able to take up water; however you may need to make another fresh cut if your tree goes too long without water.
  3. A traditional reservoir type stand is the most effective type at providing a consistent supply of water for your tree. The stand should provide at least 1 quart of water per inch of trunk diameter.
  4. Use a stand that fits your tree and avoid whittling down the outer layer of a tree’s trunk to make it fit into a stand that is too small (the outer layer of a tree is the most efficient at absorbing water).
    • Drilling a hole in the base of the tree trunk does not increase water intake.
  5. Add Prolong to the water reservoir. Prolong encourage your tree to absorb more water than it normally would, thus extending the life of your tree.
    • The temperature of water used to fill the reservoir is unimportant and does not affect water uptake.
  6. Check the water level daily and add more water as needed. Never let the reservoir go dry.
  7. Keep your tree away from heat sources such as fireplaces, heaters, heat vents and direct sunlight.
  8. Test your tree lights before putting them on the tree. If the lights are worn or get too hot, replace them with a new set.
    • Use care not to overload electrical circuits and extension cords.
  9. Always turn off your tree when leaving your home or going to bed.
  10. Monitor tree frequently for freshness throughout the season. If your tree is dry, remove it from your home.

If your tree is still relatively fresh after Christmas, consider placing it outside in water and using it as a bird feeding station during winter.