Christmas trees: the great debate

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas - but what type of tree will you be rockin' around this year? Mumsnetters get to the root of the matter

Team Artificial's proposition

1. Fake trees take up less room

"I've never had the space for a real tree, so ours is a fake with pine-scented decorations."

2. They're child- and pet-resistant

"With two dogs, a cat and a toddler, artificial is the way to go for the time being."

3. They're cheaper in the long run

"You don't have to spend money every year on a tree, just whip out the old one. Then I get to spend money on new decorations instead!"

4. They look just as good as (if not better than) the real ones

"A lot of the fake trees are quite realistic nowadays and with enough baubles and ribbon sorry I'm a tinsel snob ours looks festive enough."

5. They don't require you to have your hoover on permanent standby 

"I had a real one once. I thought I'd love the 'proper' Christmas feel of it. Ha! Bloody pine needles. Never again. I've had my lovely fake one for years and it still looks great."

6. They involve less carnage

"I don't like the thought of cutting down a tree just to bring it inside, decorate it and then chuck it out in January - it makes me sad."

"Growing up it was always tradition to go and buy a real tree. Dad always insisted on one with a root ball so we could plant it in the garden. Every year he did, and we spent the next three months watching it slowly die."

7. You can buy them with lights already attached. GENIUS.

"Fake with lights for us. Three cats mean that a real one is a bad idea and a pre-lit one means no more untangling fairy lights. Win all round."

8. AND they come in any colour you like

"I've always loved white artificial trees - there's something magical about them."  

"We have a two-foot purple fake tree complete with decorations."

Team The-Real-Deal's proposition

1. They evoke memories of Christmases past

"When I was a child we would drive around for ages in the dark - listening to The Eagles in our mustard-coloured Skoda - looking for the biggest Christmas tree we could find. Then all get squashed up with the tree and that gorgeous tree smell."

"When my parents picked me up from school for the holidays we used to stop at a lovely garden centre and choose our tree, and then have coffee and marshmallows."

2. Going out to buy the tree is a key part of the tradition

"Love the the excitement (or tediously long, torturous process according to my husband) of going to choose the perfect tree on the first day of December!"

"The kids see the tree purchase as one of the most exciting days of the year."

3. Yes, fine, the needles. But come on: they aren't THAT much hassle...

"Pine needles are the only thing I don't mind sweeping up."

"It's the gift that keeps on giving - you find pine needles in the sofa all year round."

4. You can't beat that glorious pine smell

"Pine forests in winter are my favourite smell and this just brings a little bit of it home."

5. You don't need a place to store it throughout the year

"We don't have a lot of storage space, so a real tree is more practical in terms of having to find somewhere to keep it for the other 11-and-a-half months."

6. They actually benefit the environment

"These trees wouldn't be grown if there weren't a market, so at least for the years they are growing, they're emitting oxygen and being 'green'. For every tree cut down in a pine plantation, another one is planted."

"I have the wood all ready for the fire from last year's tree."

7. The bottom line is, it isn't Christmas without a real tree

"I had a fake one and it just looked so sad and sparse and well...fake! Like it was pretending to be Christmas."
"For me, it's like the difference between having real or fake flowers in your house. You don't need to water artificial flowers, or throw them out, and the real ones wither and die, but that's part of having them in the house. They are a sort of link between inside and outside, and even convincing replicas will only ever be decorations, rather than nature in the home."

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Last updated: about 23 hours ago