Do you want an evergreen Christmas both during the holidays and beyond? Then you definitely have to choose a potted Christmas tree! Your house will smell like fresh pine during the holidays, and then you can enjoy its beauty in the garden – if you choose planting it afterwards – or you can keep it in its original pot, outdoors.
Anyway, if you consider buying a living Christmas tree this year, you better look for the varieties that are well-suited to your local climate and soil, in order to avoid wilting and drying pine needles.
A potted Christmas tree can be kept in its pot and moved outside to live after the holidays, and then brought inside each year for the holidays (never keep it indoors more than 7-10 days), but will require a fair bit more care than one that gets planted outside. A potted tree will dry out faster than one in the soil, so regular watering is a necessity, as is periodic re-potting to a larger container to allow for growth, and the fact that the roots are sitting in a pot above ground rather than in the ground may mean that additional protection is required in cold climates.
How to water a potted Christmas tree
- As with most houseplants, watering is the key of beautiful growing. Too much water will make your plant die of “trench foot”, too little watering and the leaves will turn brown and fall. It’s important that the container to have good drainage and to check periodically the saucer underneath for excess moisture.
- So, water the living tree regularly – a little bit everyday – and be prepared for dampness or water overflow under the pot in the saucer.
- To water the tree slowly so that the soil can absorb it, use ice cubes. Depending on the size of the pot, anywhere from one to three trays of ice cubes can be placed on the surface of the soil, where they will melt and gradually water the tree.
- Covering the soil with mulch can also help keep it from drying out as quickly.
- Overwatering can be absolutely detrimental to a potted Christmas tree.
- Check the soil of your tree every day—if it looks dry, water the tree – the bigger the tree, the more roots are packed into the soil, and the more thirsty the soil will appear.
- Don’t overwater, however tempting it may be!