Gift of the Month, Christmas 2015 - Living Christmas Trees

Even though we can banish the cold and dark of winter with electric lights and central heating, there is something inherently comforting about the vibrant green of evergreen trees in the depths of winter. When the majority of plant life is deeply asleep, those splashes of vibrant green remind us that not everything is cold, dormant or artificial.


History of the Christmas Tree

Just as evergreen trees bring comfort and cheer to us modern folk, ancient people also connected with evergreens. Long before the advent of Christianity,  pagan communities across Europe would decorate their homes with evergreen boughs, and adorn living trees with metal, as a reminder that the Sun God would return to banish the harshness of winter, and bring life back to the landscape.

The advent of the modern Christmas tree happened in the 16th century, as part of the German Renaissance. It had become common practice in Medieval Europe for biblically themed plays to be incorporated into church services. At Christmas time, common themes would be the Nativity story and the story of creation (as Christmas eve was the feast day for Adam and Eve), with the garden of Eden being depicted by the 'paradise tree'. Through the years these plays became increasingly rowdy and debauched, less about Christian themes and more of a source of fun , so were eventually banned altogether.

Having had one of the most enjoyable parts of Christmas service made unavailable to them, people began to set up "paradise trees" in their homes to compensate for the public celebration they could no longer enjoy. The earliest Christmas trees (or evergreen branches) used in homes were referred to as "paradises." They were often hung with round pastry wafers symbolizing the Eucharist, which developed into the cookie ornaments decorating German Christmas trees today.

A Living Christmas Tree...

Is a modern Christmas tree.

These days, with environmental issues at the forefront of our minds, questions have been raised about the impact of both artificial and cut Christmas trees. Artificial trees are usually made from PVC, a type of non recyclable plastic made from fossil fuels and invariably end up in a landfill site somewhere after a few Christmases when they get tatty and old. Some people also shy away from cut Christmas trees, as cutting down a tree is essentially killing a tree that has been growing for years.

Living Christmas trees are a modern solution.

Decorate the tree outdoors to make sure it stays alive. Pot growing your Christmas tree will restrict its size for up to ten years, meaning it can be kept at a manageable size for you to decorate every year. Move it near the window so you can enjoy the view of your lit up Christmas tree.

A living Christmas tree

We sell a selection of living Christmas trees, which are ready and waiting to be delivered to your friends and family in time for Christmas 2015.

Shop our full range of living Christmas trees here.