By Susan A. Neufeld
Mountain Communities – As decorations continue to be put up, we want to remind you to water your live Christmas tree. When a Christmas tree is cut, more than half its weight is water, With proper care you can maintain the quality of your tree. Below are a few safety tips and facts on how you can keep your tree alive longer.
- Watering is critical, A freshly-cut tree ca consume a gallon of water in 24 hours!
- Never let the water level go below the tree’s base. Too little water causes resin to form over the cut end of the trunk. Once that happens, the tree stops absorbing water and dries out quickly.
- Indoors, keep the tree away from heating ducts or heat sources. Keeping the tree away from heating sources will keep the tree from drying. In fact, the lower the temperature the better the tree will do.
- Check the stand daily to make sure that the level of water does not go below the base of tree. With may stands, there can still be water in the stand even though the base of the tree is no longer submerged in water.
- Continue to monitor your tree for dryness. Run your fingers across needles to determine if they are dry and brittle. If the needles break easily or fallin your hand, the tree is dry. If the needles are soft and flexible the tree should remain fresh at least three to four weeks before drying to an unacceptable level.
Keeping your tree watered will keep your tree from drying. A dry tree can easily catch fire. U.S. Fire departments responded to an estimated average of 200 home structure fires per year that began with Christmas trees in the 2011 – 2015 season.
Stay safe and have a happy holiday season from the San Bernardino County Fire Department.