How Christmas Trees Work

Christmas trees, Park Plaza Hotel
Christmas trees wrapped in lights stand against the Park Plaza Hotel in Grand Army Plaza on Dec. 6, 2020 in New York City. John Lamparski/Getty Images

When you think of Christmas, you probably think of a Christmas tree. In fact, the Christmas tree is one of the most recognizable images of the season. Almost everywhere you go, it's the focal point of people's holiday decoration. You adorn your tree with ornaments. You pile your gifts under it. And you gather around your tree to sing Christmas carols and drink eggnog.

­The growing and selling of fresh Christmas trees is big business. About 26 million real trees were purchased in 2019, according to the National Christmas Tree Association. There are close to 15,000 farms growing Christmas Trees in the U.S., and over 100,000 people are employed full or part-time in the industry, it reported.


But how do you choose a pretty tree, and how do you keep it from drying out and turning into a fire hazard during the holidays? In this article, you will find out everything from how and where the trees are grown to how to select and care for your tree through the holiday season.