Real or Fake?

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Each year, Ontario households have the same annual debate: real or fake?

If you talk to your clients, you’ll hear opinions for, against and everything in between.

The answer? Whatever the client wants, Hello.

But what does the science say?

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Fallowfield Tree Farm, Ottawa

– Christmas trees are 100% biodegradable and, after the holidays, Christmas trees are usually chipped by municipalities to be used as mulch or for compost.

– Christmas trees are, except for cultivated forests, the most environmentally friendly crop around. This is because a tree is harvested only after minimum of about 10 years

-Christmas trees require relatively low inputs (e.g.irrigation) and to ensure future harvests, 90 per cent of the Christmas tree farm must remain in trees all the time.

– Christmas tree crops sequester carbon dioxide and provide significant wildlife habitat (insects, birds, mammals)

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Horton Tree Farm, Stouffville

Plants or plant cuttings in the home smell good and evoke meaningful connections with nature.  Historically, plants and trees that remained green all year had a special meaning for people during winter. Just as people today decorate their homes at Christmas with pine, spruce and fir trees, ancient people hung evergreen boughs over their doors and windows. In many countries people believed that evergreens would keep away witches, ghosts, evil spirits and illness.

I’m partial to live cut trees and live cut ornaments in and around our home.  But we have our fair share of plastic imitation-evergreen ornaments as well.  Imitation-evergreen trees are usually discarded after 6 or 7 years, which makes them a landfill concern.  Re-using imitation-evergreen ornaments and trees for 20 years can reduce your carbon footprint substantially, but it probably won’t get you on the Christmas Home Tour anytime soon.

 

 

 

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