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Living Christmas Trees

 
Ben Zumeta
Posts: 113
Location: Redwood Country, Zone 9, 60" rain/yr,
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Last winter we brought one of our coast redwood saplings inside for the holiday. She did great in its 10gal felt pot in a bright corner with 4hrs light at most. She grew more than the other trees outside, and got water only once over a month. She would have done okay without any. I say "she" because we later planted this tree in honor of a neighbor-friend who passed away this year. I found this to be a vastly more meaningful celebration of the evergreen in the winter, even if she held only the lightest of ornaments. A live, vibrant 4ft redwood that has 2000yrs of potential life ahead of her is a beautiful thing without decoration! Its occurred to me after seeing many locals cutting their own Christmas trees where I go xc skiing, that this living xmas tree idea could be commercialized to great benefit to the environment. Why couldn't we raise trees in plantable pots/bags and then plant them to celebrate the ebbing of winter? They would be much less likely to burn too. I don't think this would cost more than what dead trees do with the right species. Of course some people will insist on a stiff dead branch to hang their insane number of ornaments, but I think a large portion of people would see the value of a living tree even if it cost a little more. Any thoughts? Feel free to make a profit off this idea or point me to someone who is!
 
Travis Johnson
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My local Walmart and Home Depot carries them now. I think it is an idea that is catching on.

The biggest issue is a lot of people cannot care for their own pets, much less a tree that looks well off until it reaches the critical point. That is, a live tree is like sheep, by the time you note it is under stress and unhealthy, it is too late to resuscitate it. So they let it go unwatered all winter until the ground thaws out and they can plant the thing, by then it is either dead, or dies from the shock of being replanted.

Still your idea is great. I have planted many trees and a few special ones for those who have departed.

Please accept my sympathies for the loss of your friend. I know loss is a part of life, but to grieve is normal too. I hope your tree grows for as many years as you anticipate in their honor.
 
Wes Hunter
Posts: 143
Location: Seymour, MO
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Yep, it's being capitalized on already.  The idea was even on Shark Tank a couple of years back.

Interestingly, there is a religious aspect to the cutting down of a tree, where the actual felling represents the death of Christ, and putting the tree up represents the resurrection.  For those to whom such symbolism is important, a living, potted tree doesn't quite, well, cut it.
 
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