Christmas Tree

Christmas Tree: Beautiful in the living room, Glorious in the street, a photo project by Gabriel Mauron. This is exactly why I am not getting a real christmas tree over the holidays. How do you explain the dumping on the street to a little one?

24 Comments leave a comment below

  1. Some cities (at least DC does) recycle used christmas trees for mulch. So it’s not so bad after all!

  2. yeah its pretty easy explaining this to the little one, she knows what wood chips are because they line the playground and the Department of Parks and Recreation is who handles our trees (NYC).

  3. In Los Angeles you can rent a live Christmas tree in it’s planter. The tree is delivered to you, you keep it for 2 weeks, water it, and then picked up after Christmas. You can even reserve the same tree year after year so that you can see how much it has grown! All for about the same cost as purchasing a premium chopped-down Christmas tree. Cool business idea.

  4. It’s Christmastime, let’s kill a tree!!

    Never understood it, we use our pretty fake tree every year and just light some holiday scented candles : )

  5. I’ve never had a Christmas without a (formerly) live tree and I can’t imagine Christmas without one. It makes the whole house smell like pine (one of my favorite smells.) and the experience of going out and picking out a tree, decorating it and taking everything down after the holidays has always been part of the whole ritual.

    The way I explain it is that everything has a time and a place and that this trees purpose was to make us happy this Christmas and next year we’ll go out and find our new tree.

    Recycling is a nice way to end the cycle but there’s nothing destructive about the process either way. The trees that are grown for Christmas trees are grown for Christmas trees. It’s not like they’re going to grow up into giant redwoods if I go out and buy a fake one. There’s not enough space on tree farms for them to keep growing ad infinitum and the fact that they exist helps to reduce greenhouse gasses and clean up other pollutants.

    Sure there’s an environmental cost in chopping them down and shipping them but how is that different from manufacturing and shipping artificial ones? The fact that they can be flat packed and shipped more efficiently has to be offset by the fact that they’re manufactured in a plant somewhere instead of being grown and harvested.

    I like the idea of the live trees in theory, but any ecological benefit in them being replanted afterwards has to be weighed against the added fuel cost of delivering them one by one to each home and picking them up afterward. It’s something I’ll look into for next year.

    There’s no need for anyone who doesn’t connect emotionally to a real tree at Christmas time to feel the need to go out and get one, but if you’d to have one, I wouldn’t let the fact that that it’s going to be temporary get in the way and I’ll bet you’d have no problem explaining it to Ella and swissmisster.

    I didn’t mean for that to go on that long and get all lecturey but I just really love Christmas trees.

  6. Just think of all the land used for growing the Christmas trees that the local wildlife call home.

    Compare that to getting a plastic one made from oil, a substance we will one day run out of and and chances are the tree will end up in a landfill anyway.

    Please keep buying the real ones, that land might just have a good chance of staying natural rather than being deforested, at least it is earning its living……

  7. if we weren’t meant to cut down trees God wouldn’t have made them out of wood..

  8. There’s a company here in the UK (and I’m sure others around the world!) who have recently started to hire out live Christmas Trees. When Christmas is over, they come and collect them and replant them to you can request the same tree the next year should you want to! A much better idea!

    We bought a small live tree with roots this year and intend to repot it (we have a large but concreted balcony) and try to look after it for next year. Will see how that goes.

    I do hate to see all these dumped trees :-(

  9. nice photos…

    i did the very same thing for channel 4 a few years ago…

  10. Here in Switzerland, our tree will be recycled. We bought it at Ikea for Sfr. 35 and got a coupon for Sfr. 25 to use in January. Sfr. 10 for a tree and it gets recycled was well worth seeing my 4 year old daughter smile so much when decorating the tree and devouring anything put under it.

  11. A friend of mine has taken a similar series of photos, in London:

  12. This so reminds me of the Charlie Brown Christmas tree I used to put up in my room each year when I was a kid.

  13. a few years before that, in 2001 , a young french photograpfer did a nice xmas trees subject which was also abandonned trees on paris sidewalks
    quite interesting
    you’ll find them here

  14. Amazing NYC photographer Maura McEvoy did a lovely series of post-Christmas Christmas trees in 2009. Find it on her blog here:

  15. Take your tree to Mulchfest!
    or if you are in the south, Louisiana recycles all Christmas trees by creating barriers along the coast to help prevent coastal erosion.

  16. my memory is bad, but i think i heard that real christmas trees are actually grown on plots of land meant to sustain the constant cycle of growing and cutting, and they are ultimately recyclable or biodegradable, whereas fake trees are retired after a few years and are often made of unrecyclable materials or pvc, which is toxic to the environment?

  17. We can always turn them in to rockets!

  18. I saw my neighbor do the same with his. This is why I think artificial takes the win.

  19. I tell my nearly 3 year old a special truck takes the tree away to become food for other trees, but he usually is most interested in the special garbage truck part…

  20. Get a live Norfolk Pine. Beautiful, graceful tree. It will last for years as a houseplant with proper care.

  21. i did the same project last year.

  22. This is exactly why I made a Treearoo – the reuseable, customized, xmas (or present) tree;)