Okay, you have eaten a lot of turkey, stuffing, and more pumpkin pie than you care to admit; now it is time to trim the tree for another year. The big question, do you prefer a real tree with a fresh pine scent (with the crazy pine needles embedded in the carpet until Easter) or the practical, cost effective option of an artificial tree, that will last forever.

The American Christmas Tree Association, (ACTA), is reporting its members are seeing significant growth in the sale of Christmas trees compared to same time sales last year.    According to a survey conducted by Nielsen at the end of last year’s Christmas season, more than 94 million American households, or 79 percent of all households, displayed a Christmas tree in their home.  This represents a slight increase overall in the number of households displaying a Christmas tree in 2013 year compared to the prior year.

Of those trees, 80 percent were artificial Christmas trees and 20 percent were real Christmas trees.

The Nielsen survey also showed a 1.5 percent increase from 2012 in the number of real trees displayed and a one-half percent increase in the display of artificial trees.

I personally remember Dad saying, “Come on kids, pile into the station wagon and let’s go get our tree!” I never did the real lumberjack experience of cutting it down and dragging it to the car, but it sure was cold, standing in that Christmas tree lot, trying to pick that perfect one!  Oh the memories!

I continued this tradition in my family for many years, then it just became such an expensive venture, even though, the kids still miss the real tree experience!

It used to be so much cheaper to buy a real tree, this year, a 7 ft. - 8 ft. Fresh-Cut Fraser Fir Christmas Tree at Home Depot costs $42.98 or a  9 - 10 ft. Fresh-Cut Fraser Fir Christmas Tree at Home Depot costs $84.98.

If you are feeling adventurous, visit Choose & Cut Frasier Firs located on 48th St NE One Mile off of Highway 63 in Rochester, MN.  Take Highway 63 and go east at 48th St N.E. The farm is one mile off the Highway to your right.  (507) 289-8811.

Trees 10' and above are priced at the farm.

Trees 8' and below 10' are $10/foot.

Trees below 8' are $9/foot.

Generally, the price for an artificial tree is about $70.00, based on the type of tree, if it is pre-lit, and the size.  Usually there is at least a ten year warranty included.  At Home Depot, a 9 ft. Pre-Lit Noble Pine Artificial Christmas Tree with 800 Clear lights is on sale for $119.00.

When browsing the Home Depot website, I found a15 ft. Pre-Lit Midnight Spruce Artificial Christmas Tree with SureBright Clear Lights for $1,899.00.

Whichever type of tree you choose,enjoy the holiday season with peace, love, joy and many Christmas tree memories!