5 Different Types of Christmas Tree

With Christmas tree season nearly here, you’ll soon be facing a decision about the type of real tree you want to celebrate the holiday. It can be confusing, though, to choose among the assortment of different Christmas tree types. Like shopping for anything, however, the more you know, the better choice you can make based on your individual needs and preferences. As far as the best types of Christmas trees, growers across the United States report that their top sellers are the Scotch pine, Douglas fir, white pine and balsam fir, in that order.

Here’s some information on the types of Christmas trees we offer at Eckert’s, including our white pines that you can cut yourself. Compare their qualities, advantages and disadvantages, to give yourself some guidance in picking out a tree this year.

Balsam Fir – The balsam fir, which grows abundantly in the northeastern U.S., from Minnesota to Maine, as well as in large sections of eastern and central Canada, is one of the most popular types of Christmas trees. It’s known to be the most fragrant of all the Christmas tree varieties, and it also lasts a long time. People like its eye-pleasing conical shape and soft, dark green needles. Although the balsam fir has good needle retention, its boughs are a bit flexible. Therefore, lightweight ornaments work best for decorating.

Douglas Fir – The Douglas fir is another easy-to-find, popular Christmas tree in the U.S. According to the National Christmas Tree Association, Douglas firs are popular because of their perfect pyramid shape; soft, dark green or blue-green needles; and full appearance due to how the needles radiate out in all directions. Also, when the needles are crushed, Douglas firs give off a sweet smell. Their needle retention is good, but they must be watered frequently. Some Christmas trees drink up to a gallon of water in 24 hours. Like the balsam fir, Douglas firs don’t hold heavy ornaments well, so it’s best to keep decorations lightweight.

Fraser Fir – The Fraser fir is well-liked for its short, dark green needles which are soft to the touch, as well as its pleasant pine fragrance and good needle retention. It is also an outstanding tree for decorating because its branches, which turn slightly upward, are stiff and can manage heavier ornaments. Some growers have labeled the Fraser fir as the “Cadillac of Christmas trees.”

Eastern White Pine – This evergreen has soft, flexible, blue-green needles, and the trees themselves can grow quite tall. Although its branches are not ideal for ornaments, the white pine can be perfect for those who want the tree itself to be the focus. This tree also doesn’t have much, if any, fragrance, making it a good choice for those who have smell sensitivities. Lastly, the white pine is pleasantly affordable.


Blue Spruce (Colorado Blue Spruce) – As its name implies, the blue spruce has a unique, blue/silvery appearance, so it can be lovely as part of a wintry décor theme. Its needles are sharp and its branches stiff, allowing the blue spruce to hold heavier decorations. Be careful, though, because the sharp needles can prick. This same quality keeps tree-climbing cats and nosy dogs away, so that can be an advantage. Although the blue spruce doesn’t have much of a fragrance, it scores high on needle retention.


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