There’s nothing quite like a real Christmas tree at the holidays. The sight, the scent, even the needles that start to fall to the floor as Christmas draws near — it’s all part of a beautiful and memorable holiday experience.


At Carney & Dement, we’re excited to announce our first-ever Client Appreciation Christmas Giveaway. To say “thank you” for a wonderful past year, we’re going to spend this week delivering live Christmas trees to our clients from 2017.


To our valued clients from 2017, a very heartfelt “thank you” from both of us. Please accept these trees as a token of our appreciation, and please take advantage of the Christmas tree care tips below to ensure your tree looks great through Christmas day. 


Your Guide to Christmas Tree Setup


Once you have a beautiful live Christmas tree, the first challenge is getting it into the house and decorating it while maintaining its shape and beauty. What’s the best way to do that?


Start by setting up your tree as quickly as possible. If you must wait a day or two, be sure to wrap the stump in a damp towel and leave it in a temperate place — cool but not freezing.


Once you’re ready to setup your tree, make a 1-inch cut at the bottom of the stump. Why? Because sap can dry along the bottom of the stump and prevent the tree from absorbing water — which is the last thing you want. A simple handsaw should do the trick. 


For the actual setup, you’ll need a tree stand. Look for a stand that can accommodate your size of tree (most live trees are between 6- and 8-feet tall). You’ll want a stand that also features four clamps, which will help you level your tree so that it stands perfectly straight. And, finally, be sure to get a tree stand that includes a water reservoir of 1 to 2 gallons.


After you get your tree inside, find the perfect spot in your home, and make small adjustments to the clamps to ensure the tree is standing straight. Then, go ahead and add lights and ornaments before sweeping up. The tree will shed needles as you move and decorate it, so you might as well wait until the end to clean.


And then there’s the sap conundrum. Christmas trees are covered in sap, and it can get everywhere: hands, hardwoods, carpet. But don’t worry — there are fast and easy ways to clean sap, too:


  • Hands: Pour a little vegetable or olive oil over the sap on your hands. Rub it in for about a minute, and then rinse away with warm water and dish soap.
  • Hardwood: Start by trying to ice it away. Rub an ice cube on the sap stain until it grows hard, then wipe away the water and use a fingernail or a blunt tool to pick off the sap. If that doesn’t work, soak the sap in oil soap for wood floors, and then dab with a towel and scrub with a soft brush.
  • Carpet: Soak a towel in either rubbing alcohol or hand sanitizer. Then gently dab the stain (no wiping) until the sap hardens and can be picked or pulled away from the carpet fibers.


Watering and Maintenance Tips: How to Care for a Real Christmas Tree


Caring for a Christmas tree is incredibly important. If you set it up and leave it sitting untouched in the corner for 4 weeks, it’s going to look droopy and dead by Christmas morning — and no one wants that.


Start with water. Your tree is incredibly thirsty, so make sure it has plenty to drink. How much water? Your live Christmas tree may absorb up to a gallon of water the first day. Check your tree stand’s reservoir each morning and top off as needed. If you find that the tree isn’t absorbing water during those early days, ask yourself: Did I cut an inch off the stump? Remember that sap dries on the stump and can block water absorption, which is why you must cut an inch off before placing the tree in the stand.


Some people swear by special home concoctions for keeping their trees looking nice and fresh through Christmas. Some add an aspirin to the tree stand’s water reservoir. Others use Sprite, Ginger Ale or other fizzy beverages. The science behind these home concoctions isn’t strong, but feel free to try them out and see what works for you. But, at the very least, keep your tree stand full of clean tap water.


Why is it so important to keep your tree in good shape? There are 3 main reasons:


  1. Aesthetics: A fresh tree is a beautiful tree. Failing to take care of your tree will lead to a dry, droopy tree by Christmas.
  2. Cleanliness: A fresh tree also loses fewer needles (though it will lose some), which means your living room will remain cleaner.
  3. Safety: And, finally, a fresh tree is a safe tree. The drier and deader your tree becomes, the more of a fire hazard it becomes.


After Christmas: Tree Disposal and Recycling


If you remember nothing else about disposing of a Christmas tree, remember this: Choose recycling over trashing. Recycling a Christmas tree gives it a second life as mulch or another material. Christmas trees are often used to make:


  • Paths for hiking trails
  • Bird feeders
  • Fish feeders
  • Erosion barriers
  • More


Here in Jackson, you can participate in the Chipping of the Green tree recycling project.  Donations start at drop-off locations in both North and South Jackson starting the day after Christmas — for those of your eager to clean up and turn your attention to the New Year.


Again, ‘Thank You’ From Carney & Dement


As the end of the year approaches, we’d like to again say “thank you” for a wonderful 2017. We so appreciate our past clients, and we look forward to serving even more homeowners and prospective homeowners in the New Year. If you’re considering buying or selling homes in Jackson, TN in 2018, we’d love to share our experience, knowledge and deep commitment to getting results for our clients.


Contact us today about buying or selling homes in Jackson, TN.