There are plenty of places in Los Gatos to pick out this year's Christmas tree, including:
- Four Winds Christmas Trees, 19679 Skyline Blvd., 408-464-2707
- Patchen California Christmas Tree Farm, 22217 Old Santa Cruz Highway, 408-353-1615
- Summit Christmas Tree Farm, 23868 Summit Rd., 408-354-3595
- Peppertree School Tree Lot, corner of Lark Avenue and Winchester Boulevard.
- Green Thumb Nursery of Los Gatos, 15796 Winchester Blvd., 408-395-6050.
Do you know of any other farms in Los Gatos where you can cut your own? What are some other local spots to peruse trees, wreaths, etc?
With so many options, picking out a Christmas tree can sometimes make you feel like you're in " A Charlie Brown Christmas." Any given tree can either be too short, too tall, too bald, too bushy or have a myriad of other problems.
So how can you tell which tree is the right one for you? To help select your favorite tree, the characteristics of the more popular species are listed below.
Douglas-fir: This tree is generally available as a sheared tree and is the most common species found on tree lots.
It has a nice fragrance and a medium-to-good shelf life. Because of the thick, bushy crowns, they do not lend themselves to large or heavy decorations.
This species is the easiest to grow because it is relatively problem-free. It requires seven to eight years to mature as a Christmas tree.
Noble fir: This species is considered the “Cadillac” of Christmas trees. It grows in a more open pattern, has stout branches, luxurious green needles, a long shelf life and a nice fragrance. It is popular with families that have large or heavy ornaments.
It is the most expensive tree because it takes eight to ten years to mature and is the most difficult species to grow.
Grand fir: This sheared tree is the most fragrant of the native species. It has an attractive needle that makes it a popular choice as a flocked tree.
Grand fir trees require eight to nine years to grow and have a medium shelf life.
Fraser fir: This North Carolina native has strong branches that will hold heavier ornaments. The needles have a pleasant fragrance and a long shelf life comparable to a noble fir.
Fraser fir trees are difficult to grow because of the many pests that threaten them. They require eight to 10 years before they are ready for harvest.
Norway and blue spruce trees: These are generally available only at choose-and-cut farms. They will hold heavy decorations. Some consumers think they are child- and pet-proof because of the stiff, prickly needles.
Spruces require eight to nine years to mature as Christmas trees and have a medium shelf life.
Tips for caring for your tree:
Once you make it home with your tree, cut one-quarter inch off the butt and place the tree in a water stand. The stand should be large enough to hold at least one gallon of water after the tree is placed in it. Check the water level daily. A typical six-foot tall tree can drink one gallon of water each day and remain fresh for two to three weeks.
TELL US: Where did you buy or cut your Christmas tree in Los Gatos? What kind is it? Share in the comments below.