The holidays are coming up quickly and soon my house is going to be filled with family members and close friends. Last year, my family and I traveled to be with extended family. I remember one of my children commenting on the unique look of the tree in that house.
I remember thinking that I had never seen a tree like that before; however, I really liked the look and appearance. This year, I decided that I was going to take a look at multiple types of trees before making a decision. Quickly, I realized I was overwhelmed by all of the choices! If you ever find yourself in a similar position to mine, I’ve summarized the various types of Christmas trees below, so take a look!
If forced to pick, my favorite is the Blue Spruce.
Table of Contents
- Types of Christmas Trees by Species
- 1. The Balsam Fir Tree
- 2. The Fraser Fir Tree
- 3. The Canaan Fir Tree
- 4. The Douglas Fir Tree
- 5. The Grand Fir Tree
- 6. The Noble Fir Tree
- 7. The Concolor Fir
- 8. The White Pine Tree
- 9. The Scotch Pine Tree
- 10. The Virginia Pine Tree
- 11. The Blue Spruce Tree
- 12. The Norway Spruce Tree
- 13. The White Spruce Tree
- 14. The Arizona Cypress Tree
- 15. The Leyland Cypress Tree
- 16. The Red Cedar Tree
- B. Christmas Tree Decoration Styles
Types of Christmas Trees by Species
There are multiple tree species used for Christmas trees. All of them have their distinguishing qualities. Some trees have needles that fall off faster than others. Other trees might be known for their bright green color. Sometimes, a miniature tree is better for the mantle. Regardless, it is important for you to understand some of the basics regarding the different Christmas trees so you can make the right decision for you and your family.
1. The Balsam Fir Tree
The Balsam Fir tree is one of the most popular species used for Christmas trees. This is an evergreen tree, meaning that it retains its color throughout the entire year. It has a beautiful, conical shape along with dense, dark-green leaves. The leaves are flat and resemble needles. This makes it perfect for those looking for a traditional Christmas tree. In addition, the leaves on this species of tree have a few hints of silvery-white that look good in Christmas wreaths and bouquets, contributing to other purposes. Finally, this tree also emits a spicy Christmas scent that most people associate with this time of year. The branches on this tree are strong, making it great for decorating. The Balsam Fir is a small to medium-sized tree; however, it is more than large enough for the typical family!
2. The Fraser Fir Tree
The Fraser Fir is another common choice for those looking for a high-quality Christmas tree. This tree has a strong, pleasant scent along with yellow-green branches. The branches on this tree angle slightly upward, making them perfect for keeping ornaments and other decorations in place. The leaves look like needles and spiral across the base of the tree. This tree can grow up to 50 feet in height. Many people like this tree because of the conical shape, the strong branches, and the even distribution of the leaves. The bright colors ensure this tree stands out from the crowd.
3. The Canaan Fir Tree
The Canaan Fir is known for its similarities to both the Balsam Fir and the Fraser Fir. This tree is often described as a cross between the two. It has a richer green than the Fraser Fir; however, the fragrance is not quite as strong. This is another evergreen tree, just like the Balsam Fir, and will retain its color throughout the entire year. The leaves on this free are flat and shaped like needles. The Canaan Fir comes from the mountains of West Virginia and is relatively new to the Christmas tree market; however, it still excels at this purpose and is quickly becoming a popular choice. Like the Fraser Fir, its branches are strong enough to hold multiple types of ornaments.
4. The Douglas Fir Tree
Anyone who is looking to make a strong statement with their Christmas tree will want to go with the Douglas Fir. This tree has a beautiful, iconic, pyramid shape with dark green leaves that are sure to stand out from the crowd. Furthermore, this tree also emits a powerful fragrance that is one of the richest among Christmas trees. The leaves on this evergreen plant are soft and flat. In the wild, the Douglas Fir can grow to heights of over 300 feet. Almost half of the Christmas trees grown in the United States come from this free species. The branches, like the other fir trees, are very strong.
5. The Grand Fir Tree
The Grand Fir has been aptly named. This tall tree can grow to heights of more than 230 feet and is native to the Pacific Northwest and Northern California. The tree has a yellow-green appearance with needles that often contain both colors. The color makes it a unique choice among Christmas trees. Some of the needles even have a beautiful white stripe on them. The Grand Fir has thick foliage that emits a powerful, spicy Christmas tree scent. While this tree is popular along the West Coast, it has become a common choice across the entire country. The branches on this tree are also strong enough to hold a variety of decorations.
6. The Noble Fir Tree
Like the Grand Fir, the Noble Fir can grow to heights of 230 feet. This evergreen tree is known for having branches that are thick yet evenly spaced. The Noble Fir is also from the Pacific Northwest, making it a popular choice in that region. The needles and branches on this tree tend to curve upward. This makes them perfect for holding heavy Christmas ornaments without breaking. This tree has a powerful, dark green appearance that will grab the eyes of everyone in the room. This tree also has a beautiful scent that is tightly associated with the Christmas season.
7. The Concolor Fir
The Concolor Fir is also commonly called the white fir. This is due to its blue-green color that has a slightly lighter appearance than other types of Christmas trees. The needles are flat and pointed at the tip. As this tree gets older, the color tends to progress from blue to green. This tree can grow close to 200 feet in height. The Concolor Fir tree emits a similar fragrance; however, it isn’t as strong or powerful as some of the other fir trees. Regardless, the branches on this tree are still incredibly sturdy and will withstand the weight of Christmas ornaments.
8. The White Pine Tree
The White Pine tree has needles that tend to grow in clusters or bundles. The tree has a blue-green hue and the branches are pointed at the tips. The branches on this tree are flexible. They also do not emit a scent, making it a good choice for families who don’t like the smell of fir trees. The White Pine tree cannot hold heavy ornaments because they aren’t as strong; however, they can still hold something light. The White Pine tree is the largest pine variety in the United States. This tree can grow to heights of 230 feet.
9. The Scotch Pine Tree
The Scotch Pine tree is a popular Christmas tree option. This tree has a dark green color along with sturdy branches that can hold multiple Christmas ornaments. This tree can reach heights of 115 feet. The needles progress from a blue-green in the fall to a dark-green color during the winter. The needles tend to grow in clusters. This pine is known for its long needle retention, meaning that there is far less to clean up with the Christmas season ends. This tree is also Scotland’s national tree!
10. The Virginia Pine Tree
The Virginia Pine tree is one of the easiest to identify. It has short needles that twist and grow in pairs. The Virginia Pine tree features branches that are relatively short yet also dense. Many people who buy this type of pine tree try to keep the branches trimmed. This is a smaller Christmas tree that will grow to heights of about 70 feet. It has a bright green color and emits a mild fragrance that many people find charming. Those who are looking for shorter branches should take a look at this option.
11. The Blue Spruce Tree
The Blue Spruce, also called the Colorado Blue Spruce, is beloved for its unique color. The branches have a silver-blue color that glistens in the sun. The needles tend to curve upward at the end. This tree is native to the Rocky Mountain Chain. The branches on this tree grow in a dense manner and create a conical. Many of said the Blue Spruce has a shape that is perfect for Christmas trees. This tree is also the state tree of Colorado. The branches on this tree are strong, making them ideal for decorations. This tree also has a powerful, spicy scent.
12. The Norway Spruce Tree
The Norway Spruce is a beautiful, evergreen tree that can be found across the world. It has a beautiful, bright green color along with leaves that are shaped like needles. The leaves are pointed at the end. This tree has a mild fragrance that is pleasant during this time of year. Of note, this tree does not have great needle retention. Therefore, to prevent the tree from losing its needles prematurely, individuals and families need to make sure they water this tree properly. This will allow the tree to maintain its appearance throughout the Christmas season.
13. The White Spruce Tree
The White Spruce is also commonly called the Canadian Spruce and the Skunk Spruce. This species is a large tree that can reach heights of more than 130 feet. The tree has blue-green needles that are both short and sturdy. It emits a pleasant fragrance that most people enjoy. The branches are sturdy and will withstand the weight of Christmas decorations. Many people enjoy this tree because it has a unique color along with sturdy branches. With proper care, this tree will hold its needles well.
14. The Arizona Cypress Tree
The Arizona Cypress has been appropriately named as this species is native to the Southwestern region of the United States. This is an evergreen tree that will grow to a height of about 60 feet. The leaves on this beautiful tree have a blue-gray appearance. The branches grow in a conical shape that makes it pretty to gaze upon. The branches on this tree are relatively strong and will withstand the weight of Christmas decorations. While this tree is more popular in the Southwestern United States, it has been spreading across the country.
15. The Leyland Cypress Tree
The Leyland Cypress Tree is unique among the other Christmas tree options. This tree has leaves that resemble feathers with a green-gray color. The leaves on this tree grow upward, causing the tree to look like a pyramid. Unlike many of the other options, this tree does not have any fragrance at all, making it ideal for those who struggle with seasonal allergies. This tree grows quickly and can reach heights of about 70 feet. Even though the leaves feel like feathers, the upward trajectory makes them ideal for holding Christmas tree ornaments.
16. The Red Cedar Tree
The Red Cedar tree is also called the Aromatic cedar or the Eastern Red Cedar. This tree has dense branches that come together and form a pyramid shape. The leaves have an upward trajectory and are strong enough to hold Christmas tree ornaments. This tree has a dark, shiny, green color. These trees are commonly used throughout the Midwest; however, they are also rising in popularity across the country. This tree is often called the Aromatic Cedar because of its strong, spicy fragrance. Anyone who is looking for a tree with a unique shape should consider the Red Cedar!
B. Christmas Tree Decoration Styles
Now that the Christmas tree itself has been selected, it is time to decorate and design. There are multiple ways that someone can design their Christmas tree and this should be viewed on the opportunity to place a bit of personal style and flair on the holiday season. With this in mind, there are several ways that people can design their Christmas tree.
1. White Light Tree
Most people opt for several colors but another Christmas tree decorating strategy is to go with an all white tree (not to be confused with a white “winter wonderland” tree as shown below).
2. The “Lit Up Like a Christmas Tree” Tree
If you love an overly decorated tree (or your kids do like ours), the you can go all out to where you don’t even see the tree anymore.
3. The Classic Christmas Tree
The classic Christmas tree is about as straightforward as it gets. In this style, individuals and families hang a variety of lights and ornaments on the tree. There are multiple colors and styles of lights ranging from white lights to colored lights and even lights that alternate in a pattern. The ornaments come in many types and styles ranging from pictures of the family to classic Christmas ornaments and everything in between. Just be careful to keep these ornaments high off the ground if there are pets in the home!
4. The Christmas Card Tree
One of the unique ways that someone can decorate their Christmas tree is to use the cards they receive. Christmas a common time of year for people to get buried in Christmas cards. Take these cards and turn them into Christmas tree decorations. This is a great way to incorporate family members and friends into the Christmas tree itself. The cards come in multiple colors and styles, contributing to a unique Christmas tree. Combined with lights and garland, the tree will be a gorgeous example of everything that is important to the family.
5. The Ribbon Garland Christmas Tree
While ornaments and lights are popular, some people don’t like to overload on the glitz and glamour. Some might be looking for a Christmas tree that matches the rest of the décor in the room. This is where the ribbon garland tree can come in handy. Take ribbon garland and wrap the tree in red, green, and gold. Combine this with a variety of other Christmas ornaments and the tree is complete. There are multiple styles of garland ranging from single color to striped, plaid, and even polka-dotted. There are still plenty of unique options for a garland tree.
6. The Candy Christmas Tree
This Christmas tree is covered in a variety of candy (either edible or note). First, the tree is wrapped in lights or garland. Then, the gaps are filled in with a variety of candy. Think about using candy canes, lollipops, or other types of classic candy which act as ornaments. Of course, families with children should be careful not to let their kids devour the tree ahead of time! Anyone who is having trouble getting the candy to stay on the tree should simply poke a small hole in the package. Then, use a paperclip to hang the candy!
7. The Winter Wonderland Christmas Tree
Unless you get your hands on some spray-on snow, to get this type of Christmas tree, you’ll likely have to go the artificial route.
This is another popular Christmas tree decorating style. Make the tree the focal point of the room by placing some white cotton or a white rug underneath the tree. Then, hang a variety of ornaments from the tree such as snowmen, snowflakes, mittens, and more! While the winter wonderland Christmas tree is more popular in areas of the country that have a white Christmas, it can be used in a variety of settings. Try placing a snowflake on top of the tree as well!
8. The Blue Christmas Tree
There’s something tranquil and pristine about a blue-oriented Christmas tree like the one above.
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