Saturday, December 26, 2009

Do We or Don't We?

I've been stumped by whether or not we have a Christmas tree. I keep telling people we don't, but then I think maybe we do.

I don't think of us as having a Christmas tree.
  • We don't cut down or buy a tree.
  • We put up only 18 ornaments.
  • We don't put presents under the tree.
  • We don't gather around the tree during any part of the holidays.
But, in the corner of our living room, we do have a Norfolk pine, that's present all year.

We do put our 18 subtle ornaments on it.

So maybe we do have a Christmas tree?

Details on the tree:

Age: 22 years since it was purchased from a plant store
Height: 72"
Watering: once a week
Temperatures: Our house gets down to 50 most winter nights, but stays over 70 most of the time in summer
Relative Humidity: Our winter humidity is very low - like a desert - and this plant is still OK.
Special care: Likes to take summer vacation on the porch or shaded in the woods
Light: Eastern & southern light
Diameter of pot: 14"

Lower Branches: If your Norfolk pine is losing its lower branches, move it or repot it or otherwise correct the situation. Once it lose branches along the trunk, it won't sprout new ones from the bottom - it will just keep getting taller and more spindly.

Too tall? I've never had to do this, but if the tree was growing too tall, it would be easy to just trim back the new growth at the top of the tree.

One of my friends with a green thumb has two very large indoor Norfolk pines that she decorates with lights and ornaments. She does water them more often than I water plants, and they're in very large pots. She also mists them. She says the key to success for her plants is their summer vacation outside.

Now that I've blogged about the tree, perhaps it's time to de-decorate!? Or rest and regroup after holiday festivities.....or weave....


ladyoftheloom said...

Well, I like your tree. Yes you have a perpetual all-occasion, beautiful, oxygen giving tree.

Mr. Lady and I once had a multi-armed cactus that grew to about 4 1/2 feet over the years. We decorated T.C. (short for The Cactus) for the holidays with lots of things, among the ornaments little mexican hats from the tops of tequila bottles. Then, one year, he began to be sickly. Our cat had become accustomed to using his pot as a potty, undiscovered by us until too late. He died that year. So sad. Be careful of cats.

Hilary said...

I LOVE your tree........beautiful. And it is the spirit of the thing anyway, which I believe does not require more.

Colleen said...

Beautiful Norfolk Pine! We have one too, that I bought back over 10 years ago when I lived in CT and I wanted a "Christmas tree" that would live past December. And it sure did live on! It's too big now for us to carry outside - but up until a couple years ago, it spent every summer out, and I think it always came back in taller than when it left!
PS Have you see the giant Norfolk Pines in the atrium of the old Exeter High (where Seacoast School of Technology and Exeter Adult Ed are now)? They are AMAZING - I never did find out how old they are - but must be many years - they're SO tall!!!

Sharon said...

The tree is elegant. Wrap the pot in a red cloth and then there's be no mistaking your intent. Besides, it's what you say it is and ornaments pretty pretty seasonal to me!

alette siri ane said...

You do!I have done the same this year .Hope to have it many years to come.

Theresa said...

You do and it's a perfect Christmas tree!
Thank you for the complete run down on your indoor fir!

Susan H said...

Merry Christmas!!!! Sure sounds like a Christmas tree to me. My mom always had a Norfolk Pine in our front hall, but it never grew more than a couple feet tall. She didn't know about the summer vacation!

~ The Jolly Bee ~ said...

That sure makes de-decorating easy! I'm dreading this whole process, but I know it will make my house much less cluttered once all the Christmas stuff gets put away. Maybe, you're on to something here.

need_a_latte_mom said...

What a beautiful tree. I have attempted these several times and have killed the poor things every time. Great tips, I may try it again.

Leigh said...

I would probably just put lights on ornaments on the Norfolk pine. Last year we bought a potted arborvitae and decorated that. The plan was to plant it once we got moved (or plant it elsewhere if we didn't.) This year we almost didn't have a tree because of doing the living and dining room floors. Just a couple of days before Christmas we went out and cut down one of our own. There's less motivation with no young uns in the house, but with my son and DIL coming over on their first Christmas as husband and wife, I wanted to continue the traditions for whatever the future brings, especially if it includes grandchildren!

Benita said...

Well, technically, your Norfolk is dressing up for Christmas - not really a Christmas tree, but a tree with the Christmas spirit. I like that!

Delighted Hands said...

Its all-year greenery is a plus to your new room all year round! I like your ideas for others to have a successful Norfolk pine, too, I used to have one but it didn't move to FL well, Will have to try one again.

Life Looms Large said...

OK, it's official. Next year, if anyone asks me about our Christmas tree, I'll tell them we do have one. (I did get a lot of funny, perhaps pitying, looks when I told people that we don't get one.)

It can be our secret that the tree is always in our living room, and that it's just subtly Christmas-y during one month a year!

They really are nice trees and have been easier to take care of than I expected. I'm all about making the holidays more about joy and less about drudgery - so if this inspires anyone in that direction, that's great!