O’ Tannenbaum ~ Living Christmas Trees

"Green" Alternatives to Traditional Cut Trees

December 19, 2014 | 3 Comments


living christmas trees
As a child in Iran strangely enough we had more German than American Christmases. The principal to my international elementary school was German, my mother having lived in Austria as a child, would make German/Austrian cookies for us and describe the wonderland that Salzburg was during that time of year. Every year we would sing the traditional O’Tannenbaum song in German, and the beautiful lyrics inspired in me a love for the tree. Needless to say I so love Christmas and all the yueltide kitsch that goes with it! I love all the details like eggnog, to old fashioned carols, to DIY ornaments with the sprites, and of course the tannenbaums in the living rooms. The one downside for me though, is the aftermath of the holiday when we see the trees discarded in gutters along neighborhood streets. As a sensitive tree-hugging child, I would actually cry seeing the tossed aside tree carcasses strewn about city streets. Well in these wonderful green times there are wonderful alternatives to having the traditional cut trees. Now we can have a vibrant, magestic tannenbaums delivered to our front door. With companies like The Living Christams Tree Company you can also adopt the same tree year after year building a bond with the potted tree. Another alternative is to buy a tree from a nursery and keep it in your back yard changing the pot as it grows bigger. I have also planted potted trees after its use so the tree can symbolize growth season after season with a  few outdoor decorations on its boughs. If you do end up buying a cut tree, it’s probably best to source an organic one with a site like Local Harvest which can direct you to a place near you. Some folks claim having a plastic tree is a green alternative, however this is not the case. First of all you will be inhaling PVC fumes among other carcinogens, and the plastic trees are usually from China so the regulations are not up to green standards. Not to mention they do not break down, and  eventually just end up filling up the land fills. If you do get a cut tree it can always be used as mulch and put back into the land.

Here is a guide to all the varieties of Christmas trees from Sunset Magazine, and how to choose the best one for your home.

For more eco-friendly alternatives for the home see The Local Rose.

01_livingtrees_120109
Left to Right, Top to Bottom:
1. Alpine Fir
2. Deodar Cedar
3. Australian Black Pine
4. Douglas Fir
5. Giant Sequoia
6. Norway Spruce

Lyrics to O’Tannenbaum

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree,
How lovely are your branches!
In beauty green will always grow
Through summer sun and winter snow.
O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree,
How lovely are your branches!

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree,
You are the tree most loved!
How often you give us delight
In brightly shining Christmas light!
O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree,
You are the tree most loved!

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree,
Your beauty green will teach me
That hope and love will ever be
The way to joy and peace for me.
O Christmas Tree, O Christmas tree,
Your beauty green will teach me. O Christmas Tree

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
How steadfast are your branches!
Your boughs are green in summer’s clime
And through the snows of wintertime.
O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
How steadfast are your branches!

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
What happiness befalls me when oft
at joyous Christmas-time
Your form inspires my song and rhyme.
O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
What happiness befalls me

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
Your boughs can teach a lesson
That constant faith and hope sublime
Lend strength and comfort through all time.
O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree,
Your boughs can teach a lesson.

 

3 comments

  1. Fee Dove Willow says:

    I love your photo and the “rosestory” that accompanies it. Your Christmas tree is lovely and its ornaments provide that strength and faith and joy because they were set in its branches and boughs by those who love and live a life of peace and happiness and a tenderness that lasts as long as the pine in the forest, their cedar sweet and their trees tall and majestic.
    May you have a joyous and wonderful Christmas and Holiday, dear Shiva Rose!:)

  2. Erin says:

    Every year I stand alone next to our beautiful tree and sing ‘O’Tannenbaum.’ Another tree-hugging girl over here on the east coast. 🙂 When I’m out in the garden or walking in the woods, I gently brush my hands against the trunks of the trees and I swear I feel the life and spirit of the tree flowing into me. Did you always dream of living in a tree-house as a child? I still do….

    • admin says:

      Beautiful words erin!~ yes I always did dream of living in a tree house by a stream . . . fairies and druids and all things magic ~

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