Christmas Trees

Christmas Tree Species Differences

November 07, 2022

The holiday season will be here soon, and millions of people will be shopping for the perfect Christmas tree to decorate for their home.  In North Carolina, there are a wide variety of Christmas tree species grown with characteristic features, including color, fragrance, shape, and more.  Here are some of the most common species and what makes them unique.

Fraser Fir

Fraser Fir is a popular Christmas tree with branches that turn slightly upward in a symmetrical pyramid shape.  The needles are dark blue green on the upper surface and lighter on the lower surface with great needle retention.  It has stiff branches and can hold heavy ornaments with a rich woodsy fragrance.

Leland Cypress

Leyland Cypress has a conical shape with excellent needle retention.  Its branches are flexible with dark green-gray needles and very little aroma – an advantage for people with allergies.  Branches do not support heavy ornaments.

Eastern White Pine

White pines have dense branching which gives them a full conical shape.  Their needles are 2 ½ to 5 inches long in bundles of 5 with a blue green color.  They have good needle retention with very little aroma which is good for allergy sensitive people.  They are not recommended for heavy ornaments.

Arizona Cypress

The Arizona Cypress grows in pyramidal shape and has many varieties.  Carolina Sapphire has layered branches with silvery blue-green needles.  Blue Ice is more compact and columnar with steel-blue needles.  They both have a citrus-like fragrance and their dead needles do not drop like the Leland Cypress.

Green Giant

The green giant has a pyramidal shape with rich green needles.  It has flattened branches with tiny scales and long-lasting needles that do not drop, so there is little cleanup after the holidays.  It has a sweet, musky aroma.

Virginia Pine

Virginia pine trees are small to medium in size with 2-inch needles that grow in pairs making the foliage dense.  The branches are sturdy and able to hold heavy ornaments.  They have a rich piney fragrance and stay green a long time.

Christmas trees can drink up to several quarts of water per day, so it is important to check the water levels several times a day.  An under-watered tree will cause the needles to dry, and the tree will lose some of its fragrance.  Integrity Tree Care is here to help you decide which Christmas tree species is best for you.

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