Sunday, December 5, 2010

Rent or Adopt a Christmas Tree

Now that Sinterklaas is on his way back to Spain, those of you with Dutch partners will be allowed to set up your Christmas tree (at least that is how it works in our household - something about it being sacrilegious to put up a tree when the dear St Nicholaas and his Pieten have not yet visited).

Every year we traipse in search of a prize specimen to grace our front room, hoping that the tree we pick will actually last until we have seen the new year in and doesn't lose so many needles that we are still finding them under the sofa at Easter. For this reason we have actually considered an artificial tree until we see the price of the things, and wonder where we will store it in our 'loftless' house. So each year we end up getting a real tree - though still not exactly cheap. I also can't help considering the environmental impact of this tree that sits in our house for a month. One of millions chopped every year......

According to, there is little between an artificial tree and a real tree when it comes to is environmental friendliness - they just have different impacts. Of course an artificial tree can never give off the seasonal, festive smell of the pine needles of a real one; an artificial tree does of course mean you are not extracting pine needles out of your feet for six months of the year....

One suggestion on is to rent a Christmas tree - this gives the tree a longer life as it can be used three to five times before its life is over. The idea is that you pay a 'statiegeld' (yep, like you do with some bottles) and after Christmas you deliver (or it gets picked up) the tree back for it to be replanted. This is popular with companies.

You can also adopt a tree, returning it every year to the kwekerij where it is replanted and looked after so you can pick it up again the following year. Visit for more information.

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