Christmas trees need proper care

Published 12:00 am Friday, November 24, 2000

L’Observateur / November 24, 2000

LAPLACE – It’s the season for buying Christmas trees. Many families buytheir trees this weekend and keep them until after New Year’s Day. However,to keep a tree fresh and green through the holiday season, the following suggestions are offered by Louisiana Agricultural and Forestry Commissioner Bob Odom for tree-buying and proper care: Large trees look beautiful on the lot or tree farm, however it could overcrowd your home. Know the size of the space where you plan to placeyour tree, both height and width.

If the tree will be in a corner or against a wall, it allows you to find a tree that is not uniform all around, which could save you money and time.

Check the freshness of the tree by grabbing a branch. A fresh tree willshed few needles.

Once you have the tree home, place it in a bucket of water in a sheltered, cool place (such as a garage or carport), protected from wind and sun until you are ready to place it in the home.

Before placing it in the tree stand make a new, straight cut across the base of the trunk a half-inch above the original cut. Place the tree in a standthat will hold a gallon of water or more. Check the water daily and refill asneeded.

Never place a tree near fireplaces, radiators or TVs. Lighted candles orother open flames should never be used on or near trees.

Test all light cords before putting them on the tree. Do not use worn orfrayed wiring or electric cords.

Do not let wrapping paper and electric toys accumulate under the tree.

Always unplug electric lights when leaving the home or going to bed.

Consider recycling the tree through agencies using them for wetlands restoration.

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