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Dreaming of a Green Christmas

Updated on December 20, 2010

The smell of pine trees always reminds me of piles of Christmas presents with my name on them. It’s a memory of pure joy and innocence. That smell is one of my favorite things about December, which is why I puzzle over the popularity of fake Christmas trees. Today I saw a huge aisle of these fake trees at the store while buying some LED lights for my little Noble fir. (By the way, the mini LED’s are amazing. They’re battery powered and will probably last through December without ever being plugged in.)

Beyond the amazing pine smell, buying a real tree is an environmentally friendly choice. There seems to be a rumor spreading that fake Christmas trees are better for the environment because they save poor trees from being cut down. In fact, fake trees are made of non-recyclable PVC material, and Christmas tree farming is actually a great economy to support. The trees are grown year around and are replanted immediately after they’re cut down. In the smog-strewn Inland Empire where I used to live, there was a huge Christmas tree farm off the 10 Freeway that was like a green haven in an industrial wasteland. And yet fake trees seem to be the rave these days. In an age when global warming is the fear, shouldn’t we be supporting tree farms and their CO2-consuming benefits?

Not only does having a fir tree in the house smell wonderful, but it makes you feel great as well! Since we brought home our little tree from the farmer’s market, the air in the house is much fresher. Real trees is why I love Christmas. If you get the chance, support tree farms instead of big corporations this Christmas!

I explore the phenomenon of our changing Christmas culture in my article on greenanswers.com. Check it out: http://greenanswers.com/news/210314/dreaming-green-christmas-tree 

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