Taking a trip to a Christmas tree farm is kind of magical. It usually marks the beginning of the holiday season — the event that gives the go-ahead to start drinking egg nog and adding whisky to your weekend pancake syrup. To have the best possible experience, check out a few of our tried and true tips for cutting down a Christmas tree.
Tips for picking out a winner:
- View the tree from all sides, look for bald spots (bald spots can be okay as long as you're not viewing the tree at home from all sides).
- Don't cut down the first tree you like. I'm going to lose some of you on this one, but for the perfectionist, it's the only way: Tie tinsel (or something) to all the trees you like, then take photos of each tree. Trust me, it will save you from walking back from tree to tree one thousand times, forgetting which ones you actually liked. Just be sure to remove all the tinsel once you've chosen your tree.
- Try to pick a tree with a straight stump.
- Lay the saw level to the ground and cut the tree as far down as you possibly can at the stump.
- Kneeling cushion, or blanket (cardboard works in a pinch)
- Measuring tape
- Friend/family member with the most Nick Offerman-like qualities.
- Tinsel or ribbon to mark the trees you like.
- Cordless Reciprocating Hacksaw (most tree farms will provide a bow saw, but it's always a good idea to call ahead to find out.)
- Bungee cords, nylon paracord or ratchet tie downs (most farms provide some sort of rope but I've found it to be less than adequate).
- Something adorable. Flannel, plaid, a knit sweater. Obviously something that will look great on Instagram. Check on the weather and dress accordingly.
- A boot and/or hip flask if you're not the one wielding the saw. Trust me, baby it's cold outside. And even if it isn't...
- Snow boots or rubber boots, as it always seems to be crazy muddy out there.
- Work gloves. Sap and sharp pine needles abound.
- Always remember to be considerate of the tree farmers and look before you step. Tiny saplings are usually sprouting up everywhere and you don't want to crush any tiny trees! Enjoy your experience and be sure to take lots of photos!