Our family has always made it a tradition to go out in to the country and cut our own Christmas tree – just like they did on National Lampoons’ Christmas Vacation, (only without the fire) We have listed below several places that offer live trees. Contrary to popular belief, cutting down a live tree is not bad for the environment. (See our last paragraph for more on this.) It’s a great way to show your kids where trees come from and teach that there is more to this world than just sidewalks and streets.
Don’t worry about bringing anything because saws are always provided. However, you will want to have warm boots, warm gloves and warm hats, depending upon the weather. We always take at least an hour to pick out our tree, then you have to cut it and bring it up to the front, which will take more time as well. You will find there is a dead, peaceful stillness out in the country that you can’t find anywhere else. Some places have lots according to size, and you might want to ask about this before going back to find your tree. Also, beware of place that “dye” their trees, this is a tale – tale sign the trees aren’t healthy.
When picking out your tree, you will need to keep in mind the space you have including height and width. The trees look a lot smaller outside than they do when you get inside. You will also want to pick out the kind of needles you prefer. Make sure you look at all four sides of the tree, and make sure there is a single straight trunk. We like to pick out a tree that is full of a lot of branches, and has the soft needles. Certain trees are better for certain kinds of lights as well.
Be sure you go to a place that has a shaker. If you don’t, you’ll have needles all over the room after Christmas is over. The tree farms will also wrap your tree to make it for a safe voyage home. This is not suggested if the weather has been below freezing for a while, because it will cause the needles and branches to break. After searching, cutting, and bringing it to the front, your tree gets measured, shaken and wrapped and you pay per foot. Most outdoor trees range from $45 – $65 or more. They will help you get your tree on top of your car, or inside the back of your car. If you have a hatchback, you can leave the window open and have the top sticking out the back. (the kids love this)
Also, your tree will need a lot of water when it gets home. Make sure you water it right away (we put it in a bucket of water right away.) The trees have a natural tendency to cover up any cut with it’s own sap, and if you wait too long, the tree will actually block any water from coming in. If you’re not ready to bring it inside, you can keep your tree outside for several days. You will also want to water your tree every day. And, you will need a tree holder that can hold water in the bottom. Larger trees can take up to a gallon or more a day! We sometimes let the tree adjust to warmer temperatures in the garage before bringing it inside.
After the first few days, your tree will take less water, and continue to decrease it’s intake, but continue to keep watering. Also, spraying the tree with a plant watering spray will also keep it fresh and alive. Humidity in the room will also help. If you can find them now, there are automatic tree watering systems that will keep the tree watered for days. (or make your own, but that’s another story)
Now, for taking down your live tree. What do you do with the tree after Christmas. Some people just put the tree out on the curb and let the city take it. However, if you have a large yard, and / or a pond, you can just put it out back and let the birds and wildlife benefit from your tree, and remove it in the Spring.
It can provide cover for small animals, and for fish in the pond. The pine cones provide food and cover for the birds.
Dudeck’s Pine Country Nursery, 9255 N. 300 E. Rolling Prairie , 219-778-4805. www.dudeckspinecountry.com/
Guse’s Tree Farm, 6177 W. 1450 S. Wanatah, 219-733-9346. www.gusechristmastrees.com
Hensler Nursery, 5717 N. 750 E, Hamlet, 219-867-4192. www.henslernurseryindiana.com
McClure Tree Farm, 4677 N 525 W, LaPorte, IN 46350, 219-363-7689. www.mclurechristmastrees.com
Salisbury Pines, 12299 S. Long Lane, Hanna, 219-797-4745. Known for it’s very large trees, 4 different kinds.
Glasgow Christmas Tree Farm, CLOSED THIS YEAR, 7719 S. Sand Rd., Union Mills, IN 46382, 219-608-0645 Facebook
Hennings Christmas Tree Farm, (Pre-cuts OPnly) 7160 W. 1400 N, Demotte, 1.4 miles We of Halleck on Division Rd, 219-869-1159 or 219-987-2195 Facebook
Lee’s Trees: 15284 N. 300 West. Trees cost $30 for you-cut; pre-cut trees cost $10 per foot. Cash and check only. 219-869-8573; www.facebook.com/leevvtrees
Christmas in Northwest Indiana:
5 Holiday Traditions – Thru Dec 31st – 5 Things to do For the Holidays Your Family Will LOVE!
Valparaiso Tree Lighting And Winter Fest – TBD
What’s on Theatre Stage this year TBD
Candlelight Tour in Laporte TBD
Winter Lights Drive Thru – Valparaiso Nov 19th, 2022 Thru Dec 31st, 2023
Holly Days in Valparaiso – Friday, Dec 2nd, 2022
A Christmas Story Comes Home – Hammond Indiana Nov 14th – Jan 3rd, 2023
Christmas At Barker Mansion – Michigan City Thru Dec 2nd Dec 28th, 2022!
FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS DRIVE THRU – Michigan City Dec 5th thru Jan 3rd 2021!
The Nutcracker – 8 shows – Dec 8th – 11th (Indiana University)
Michigan City Snowflake Parade, Sat. Dec. 3rd , 2022
Find Things to Do For Christmas, Click here.
(ALL ON ONE PAGE)