Is it even Christmas without the smell of pine needles? Fake trees are all well and good, but sometimes you crave the real deal. Heaving a dusty plastic tree down from an attic simply doesn’t warm the cockles anywhere near as much as a trip to the local Christmas market.
There are, however a few basic rules to observe. Listen and learn...
Know your Christmas trees
Read up on the Nordic spruce, Nordmann fir, Scots pine et al to decide whether you want to prioritise value over, say, needle retention. The only drawback to a real tree, after all, is that spiky green carpet come January.
Get to grips with dimensions
Don’t buy a tree until you know how high your ceiling is. Choosing the right tree will (obviously) depend on what your home can accommodate. Bear in mind that it will likely expand threefold once that netting has been snipped off. You can always chop away unnecessary branches (although remember, children under 12 should not handle chainsaws unsupervised).
When Christmas is over...
If you’ve not arranged a tree pick-up, your local council should offer a tree recycling service. See www.londonrecycles.co.uk for details.
RECOMMENDED: Read our full guide to Christmas in London.