It’s not just white or multicolor, either: You can also select a Mardi Gras–like mode with white, green, and pale purple lights. Despite its size, this 4.5 foot-tall tree still looks plenty life-like, thanks to nearly 400 full, hinged branches that come pre-lit for extra convenience. Living trees have color variations and other “imperfections,” and that’s part of what tells the eye that they’re real. 3.0 out of 5 stars It’s okay. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Shop Nearly Natural Alpine Artificial Christmas Tree with 150 Lights and 405 Bendable Branches online at Macys.com. In one review we saw, a buyer wished the tree had come with some touch-up paint, but they still gave it five stars. Setup is similar to that of our other picks. This model lacks the company’s PowerConnect feature, in which the lights connect when you attach the central pole. We’ve set up enough artificial Christmas trees to know that with care, decoration, and attention to detail, any of them can look beautiful. It hit all of our testing criteria (highly rated, available at 7.5 feet tall, and prelit with color and clear LED lights), and in online images it appeared casually unkempt without veering too far from the familiar holiday cone. Bonus: they come pre-lit. And we invited everyone in the office to share their preferences and impressions of the trees over the course of two weeks. Then we strung the lights strategically—since we were placing the tree in a corner, we put them only on the side of the tree facing the room. Not beautiful out of the box: Setup is hardly effortless with a fake tree, as we saw consistently during our firsthand tests. It makes setup that much quicker. At 7.5 feet high and almost 5 feet across (59 inches, to be exact), the tree is generously proportioned; it’ll fill the corner of almost any living room. There are many, many more competitors than what we list here. All it took was one call to customer service, a $15 charge, and 48 hours before Ben had a replacement cord in hand and the tree was merry and bright once more. (As with any artificial tree, strategically placed ornaments will help.). And a climate-controlled space (converted basement, storage closet) is always preferable to an uninsulated attic or garage. Where to buy a real Christmas tree - and what is the best to buy? Wrap with a long string of mini white lights and dispense with decorations to complete a look to remember. The wide, flared base of the Balsam Hill European Fir quickly tapers into a narrow point in its top two-thirds, with lots of individual branches randomly poking out far beyond the main silhouette. We rely on advertising to help fund our award-winning journalism. John Lewis & Partners Gabriel Gold Unlit Christmas Tree, £209, Balsam Hill's Nordmann Fir Christmas tree, from £189, Very's Grizedale Pre-Lit Christmas Tree, £89.99, Next Forest Pine Christmas tree, From £50, Fraser Fir Upswept Pre-Lit Mixed Tips Christmas Tree, £129.99, Doris Brixham Driftwood Christmas Tree, £225. In the dark, any properly fluffed tree, from the cheapest to the most expensive, looks very good. Enjoy your tree, whichever one you prefer.”. For a long-term investment in a truly excellent artificial tree, Balsam Hill’s most popular “species” is hard to beat. We had no issues with the lights, but all the same troubleshooting tips from our other Balsam Hill pick apply here. Simply hang your favourite baubles and decorations from this stylish wooden version that will last for years. The incandescent version of the Vermont White Spruce uses separate strings for each mode, so if you prefer all-white or all-color, only half the number (810 bulbs) are illuminated—which produces an effect that’s not appreciably different from that of the Downswept Douglas Fir’s 750 lights. So spend a bit of time tugging individual bulbs into a position where they shed their light broadly. Not messy: Fake trees don’t scratch up the roof of your car in transit or cover your hands in sap when you’re moving them or setting them up. The Balsam Hill Alpine Balsam Fir is the sparsest of the bunch—skinny, with wide gaps between its branches. Although the quality of this line appears statistically comparable to that of a National Tree model, the overall purchase is a weaker value in comparison. But a higher percentage of polyethylene generally means a higher price, and as with real trees, bigger sizes come with bigger costs. (The tree is covered by a three year warranty.). If you figure you can get at least a few years out of this tree, versus paying an average of about $80 annually for a live one, you’ve got yourself a bargain. Police vow to seize e-scooters and fine riders £300 amid boom in Christmas sales, How to look after poinsettia plants: tips on how often to water and where to display them, What to do with your Christmas tree in January. The best way to think about who should get an artificial Christmas tree is to compare the benefits and drawbacks of fake versus live Christmas trees. This refers to the number of needles; the higher the count, the fuller the tree will look. satisfaction guarantee. (He also noted that when live trees get thrown out, they often become free mulch for public parks—in effect, they’re recycled.) And nobody will notice, especially when it's covered with your lovely decorations. The literature also confusingly mentions checking to see if a fuse has blown in the plug, and if so, to replace it with one of the included replacements. Realism obviously isn’t a point of comparison between the Winchester White Pine and our other competitors. The effect is especially striking in a dark room or in a corner that doesn’t receive a lot of natural light in the daytime. It comes with a sturdy metal stand and has memory wire through the branches to help them stay perfectly in place. The all-PVC branches are tightly compressed, leaving huge gaps between them. When we viewed our test models as plain green trees, the Vermont White Spruce looked most like the real thing. We spent 200 hours researching and tested 20 types of essential cookie-related items to find the best gear to make holiday baking fun and stress-free. With 1,867 lifelike polyethylene branch tips, the Downswept Douglas Fir is thickly foliated and shows no gaps after fluffing. And we found that the Winchester White Pine lost more of its needles while we were fluffing than any other tree in our test. Virtually all contemporary artificial trees have branches permanently mounted on hinges on the center pole. The wheels make moving the tree into position and back into storage much easier. Bring the holiday spirit to any room with this Christmas tree. Verified Purchase. According to Jen Petersen, director of public relations for Balsam Hill, the largest growth trend for the company has been in its “most realistic” options. Once trees are fluffed, lit, and decorated, they can all look great in their own way. A reader asked about Bethlehem Lights, a tree brand that’s primarily sold through QVC. wide), making it perfect for tighter spaces, without sacrificing looks. Shop our Holiday Gift Guide. Finally, it’s widely available, easy to set up, and competitively priced. The earlier you set up your tree, the better. Artificial trees are made of petroleum-based plastics and are manufactured mostly in China, where environmental laws are less stringent. Share: share via email. This option has slightly fewer lights, at 600, and they’re incandescent (not LED), which puts it at a disadvantage in durability and total lifespan. The Home Decorators tree’s most valuable asset is the 600 Twinkly bulbs pre-strung on it, which retail on their own for several hundred dollars. Instead, this model requires you to manually connect standard male/female plug connectors near where the segments of the tree come together. Having the tree at home ready to go once Thanksgiving wraps up means one fewer errand and one less expense at a busy, budget-straining time of year. Next's 7-foot Christmas tree is perfect for someone who would like an easy to assemble option that can also be easily packed up for next year. National Tree Company offers a warranty for its realistic prelit trees taller than 6.5 feet, such as our pick, that covers manufacturer defects for five years from the date of purchase. There are some forgettable blinking settings (where the bulbs shut on and off as if someone were flipping a light switch), but all in all, the versatility of this color-change mode is an excellent feature worth seeking out, on this or any other National Tree species, because it really sets the tree apart from the pack of more basic alternatives. The National Tree Company 7.5-foot Winchester White Pine (WCHW7-300-75) is our pick for fans of kitsch or people who just want something fun and funky. Those branches aren’t prominently visible, but they do add visual density—helping give the impression of an especially“full” tree. Artificial trees offer a lot of versatility, as this space-saving version of our pick proves—if you don’t want a tiny tree in a small room, consider a slim model with a minimal footprint. Although live-tree farms contribute marginally to the consequences of fertilizer and pesticide use, they add value to land that might otherwise be valuable only to developers. Placed side by side against our other picks, the Pencil Slim looks bizarre, and it was nobody’s first (or second or third) choice. Find helpful customer reviews and review ratings for Nearly Natural 6ft. But we worry that the remote could disappear or stop working over the decade-plus you can expect the Vermont White Spruce to last. And in an unusual touch for a tree of its price, the light strings connect automatically when you stack the tree’s three sections together, thanks to cables and plugs that run through the “trunk.” That’s much easier than the usual process of hunting down bare plugs among the foliage and manually hooking them together. Low maintenance and low stress: There’s no need to water a fake tree or to shimmy underneath the thing to secure it in its stand. Between artificial and live trees, which is greener? If you’re willing to buy and hang the lights yourself, it’s a great option for not a lot of money: The tree is usually about $160, and after stringing it with an inexpensive 500-bulb set of incandescent lights and two packages of cheap but pretty baubles, we had an attractive tree for $225 total—a great deal if you can get at least a few years out of it. In that way, our 500-light string stretched “twice as far,” visually, as it would have if we had wrapped the entire tree. Shop Nearly Natural Artificial Christmas Tree with 100 Clear LED Lights online at Macys.com. It’s also likely why, unique among our test trees, the Vermont White Spruce has built-in wheels on its stand. This design means that they all unfurl into place quickly when you set up the tree. But depending on your personality type, therein might lie the problem—what is “just right” when you’re going for a natural, untouched look? At first glance you might think it reminiscent of Charlie Brown’s sad fixer-upper, but it’s a distinctively Scandanavian look that would appear at home in a “how to hygge” lifestyle spread. It has the same type of (but fewer) realistic branches, and its 300 LED bulbs change from white to multicolor to a mix of the two. It's for a corner next to a window shutter, and I didn't want a real tree for fear of insects in my bedroom. Create a traditional Christmas setting with this artificial Christmas tree Easy and stress-free, it boasts tiers of evergreen foliage made up of 405 easy-to-bend branches for all your favorite holiday accents. Also, what was once a genuine health concern—the use of lead as a PVC stabilizer—is no longer an issue in most artificial trees sold in the US, according to National Tree Company and the American Christmas Tree Association, which represents artificial-tree companies. When he’s not here, he’s on his bike. Email; share via facebook. There are enough of those branches to give the tree a notably full appearance, with no obvious gaps. But the risk of lead exposure from a contemporary artificial Christmas tree is likely to be minimal to nonexistent. PVC ones are cheaper and are cut to look like needles - sometimes unsuccessfully. But, I’m never looking back. We looked for prelit trees that had roughly 100 bulbs (or more) per foot of tree height; fewer than that can make the lighting appear sparse. Durable: A good artificial Christmas tree can last a decade, whereas live trees last a single season. A smart plug lets you control “dumb” devices like lamps and fans or even put them on a schedule. You could use all-white for a more sophisticated look during a grown-up holiday party, for example, and use the multicolor mode when the mood is more festive. John Lewis goes to great lengths to achieve this luxurious mix of gold and green branches with gold glitter tips for an added festive touch. The needles are molded from real Nordmann fir cuttings, so their tips are semi-flat and colored dark green on top with a silvery-white shade underneath. Get free shipping on qualified Classic Nearly Natural Artificial Christmas Trees or Buy Online Pick Up in Store today in the Holiday Decorations department. In keeping with the budget-oriented mindset, we bought the cheapest decent set of lights we found at the local big-box store: a 500-light string of incandescents from Home Accents Holiday, for which we paid $35. Shop for natural decorated christmas trees at Bed Bath & Beyond. Verified Purchase. Create a winter Christmas scene with this Flocked Vermont Mixed Pine Artificial Christmas Tree boasting soft looking foliage flocked with a snow-like effect throughout 1680 bendable branches for accenting with holiday accents. This pick’s intentionally rough-around-the-edges silhouette and dual-color needles make it a perfectly imperfect option. That’s a much easier way of doing it, and our testers preferred it. Puleo is not as widely available as some other brands, but its quality ranks among the best. National Tree Company’s 7.5-foot Feel Real Downswept Douglas Fir with dual-color LEDs (PEDD1-D12-75) is our pick among artificial Christmas trees. Read honest and unbiased product reviews from our users. They can be quite similar to the real thing, but their plastic branches have a uniform appearance and a strange shine that tells the eye they’re unnatural. At just 32 inches, it’s barely half as wide as the 59-inch Downswept Douglas Fir, so it doesn’t look like any pine you’ll find in nature; it’s more like a cypress. When we asked our staff to pick a “most lifelike” tree from among our eight test models, the Vermont White Spruce was their consensus choice. It’s proudly unrealistic, sporting an all-white trunk, branches, and PVC needles lit by 500 white incandescent bulbs. If you’re ready to bring up the Christmas spirit, we recommend Balsam Hill Blue Spruce Artificial Christmas Tree. If any of its 500 incandescent bulbs are blocked by the foliage, they create a dark patch that stands out against the internal glow of the tree. X "Close Cart" Skip to content. Epiphany 2021: When should I take the Christmas tree down and what are the traditions behind the Twelfth Night? free returns. Studded with pinecones, this tree is prelit with 750 lights, and users love its "pretty look," though it … He has anchored our unequaled coverage of air purifiers and water filters since 2015. Even our staffers who prefer live trees found it beautiful. This 7ft tree particularly stands out because of its robust shape, and has recently been reduced in price. 17 of the best artificial Christmas trees and where to buy them, John Lewis & Partners Gabriel Gold Unlit Christmas Tree, Balsam Hill's Nordmann Fir Christmas tree, Argos Home Grey Ombre Christmas tree, £30, Very's Fraser Fir Upswept Pre-Lit Mixed Tips Christmas Tree, The ancient religious practice of 'chalking the door' on the rise. Frontgate mostly competes with Balsam Hill in the premium category, as it focuses on super-realistic and super-expensive trees. But that small girth means it can fit in spaces where a full-width tree can’t. Buy top selling products like Puleo International 7.5-Foot Natural Fir Pre-Lit Narrow Artificial Christmas Tree and Vickerman Natural Alpine Christmas Tree… In fact, one Wirecutter staffer thought it was the most luxe-looking of the eight trees we tested. Although this Balsam Hill tree is still unlikely to fool anyone peering at it up close, it’s a great option for anyone interested in buying their first artificial tree but worried they’ll miss the individuality of a cut or live tree. Be sure to check any tree lights for exposed wires, and never hang ornaments directly from the wires, as the weight and/or sharp points on a hanger can compromise and expose the protective coating. When you buy a The Holiday Aisle® Nearly Natural 3' Green Artificial Christmas Tree with 50 Clear Lights online from Wayfair.ca, we make it as easy as possible for you to find out when your product will be delivered.Read customer reviews and common Questions and Answers for The Holiday Aisle® Part #: HLDY7717 on this page. Everyone loves how real it looks and the LED lights that save a ton of time The remote is handy, because it means you don’t have to root around behind the tree when you want to change the lighting modes. Christmas Palm Artificial Tree with 150 Warm White LED Lights, Green at Amazon.com. (For smaller homes, we recommend the 6.5-foot version.). It’s one of a number of new trees, from multiple manufacturers, that come with app-controlled LED lights that you can program directly or set to multiple pre-programmed patterns—pushing their abilities beyond the seven or eight presets that most white-plus-color trees come with. Since then we’ve shopped for trees online and in person at several big-box stores, tested several over the years, and spent hours examining trees at House of Holiday—New York City’s largest holiday shop—whose owner Larry Gurino “love[s] to geek out over artificial trees.” Wirecutter supervising editor Courtney Schley has interviewed the American Christmas Tree Association, which represents artificial-tree makers, to understand the industry itself, including the manufacturing processes, sales and design trends, and statistics. free shipping. Puleo is Larry Gurino’s favored brand at House of Holiday; like National Tree, Puleo is a New Jersey–based, family-run business. It looks great with an artificial robin sat in the snowy bits – just a suggestion! Most trees make you hunt down the plugs on each section and either hook them together or draw them down through the tree to a common power-strip-like master plug. To make a tree (of any price or level of realism) look good, you have to “fluff it,” a tedious but necessary process in which you manually separate and arrange the branch tips to give the tree more volume and a more realistic shape. But the process is much faster given the tree’s narrow shape. It extends 3' wide from a tin metal planter and will make holiday decorating a breeze for years to come. Like the Vermont White Spruce, the Nordmann Fir is pricey—depending on the size and lighting, you’re looking at anywhere from $600 to $1,800. These realistic tips generally make the tree look fuller, with fewer gaps, and add a sense of realism when viewed up close (within 6 feet). It represents a huge step up in price from our top pick, typically costing $1,200 to $1,800. Accidents do happen though, like the time a robotic vacuum belonging to Ben Frumin, Wirecutter’s editor in chief, severed a section of his Downswept Douglas Fir’s electrical cord after gobbling up several inches near the light-controlling foot pedal. You might not be surprised to learn that within the industry there’s no consensus answer—the American Christmas Tree Association and the National Christmas Tree Association, which represent the artificial-tree and live-tree industries, respectively, both claim the “greener” title. When you buy Nearly Natural, Inc. Nearly Natural 36" Pine & Berry Christmas Tree or any Home Decor product online from us, you become part of the Houzz family and can expect exceptional customer service every step of the way. On the other hand, of course, keep your tree for years and years and it will start to pay you back in terms of carbon footprint; whereas a 'real' one will always have to be transported, used and disposed of every year. The best artificial Christmas trees for 2020 - and where to buy them It isn't Christmas until the tree is up, and a quality faux fir is far from faux pas If a section of a light string malfunctions, the culprit is usually a single bulb that came loose, whether it has burned out or not. Create a traditional Christmas scene with this Northern Tip artificial Christmas tree boasting a collection of rich, evergreen foliage, intricately designed with +680 branches to personalize with your favorite holiday accents. 4. In our tests the tree emitted a faint chemical smell that largely went away after the tree had stood out of the box for 24 hours; the odor was gone completely after a couple of days. If you want one of the very best artificial trees available, we recommend the Balsam Hill 7.5-foot Vermont White Spruce Flip Tree Color + Clear LED. A healthy and well watered tree caught on fire immediately but eventually went out (though it’s important to note that their test tree had no ornaments or lights on it, and stood against a concrete wall), while a dry, unwatered tree burned furiously. Haley joked, “I feel like this process could break a couple up.”, National Tree Company Feel Real Downswept Douglas Fir, National Tree Company 7.5-foot Feel Real Downswept Douglas Fir (PEDD1-D12-75), Balsam Hill 7.5-foot Vermont White Spruce Flip Tree Color + Clear LED, Balsam Hill’s 7.5-foot Vermont White Spruce Flip Tree Color + Clear LED, Balsam Hill 7.5-foot Nordmann Fir Color + Clear LED, Balsam Hill’s 7.5-foot Nordmann Fir Color + Clear LED, Home Accents Holiday 7.5-foot Unlit Dunhill Fir, National Tree Company 7.5-foot Winchester White Pine (WCHW7-300-75), National Tree Company 7.5-foot Winchester White Pine, National Tree Company 7.5-foot Downswept Douglas Fir Pencil Slim (PEDD4-392D-75), National Tree’s 7.5-foot Downswept Douglas Fir Pencil Slim, Our pick: National Tree Company 7.5-foot Feel Real Downswept Douglas Fir (PEDD1-D12-75), Upgrade pick: Balsam Hill 7.5-foot Vermont White Spruce Flip Tree Color + Clear LED, Upgrade pick: Balsam Hill 7.5-foot Nordmann Fir Color + Clear LED, Budget pick: Home Accents Holiday 7.5-foot Unlit Dunhill Fir, Also great: National Tree Company 7.5-foot Winchester White Pine (WCHW7-300-75), Also great: National Tree Company 7.5-foot Downswept Douglas Fir Pencil Slim (PEDD4-392D-75), On fake trees, real trees, and harming the environment, close to half of all Chritsmas tree fires (PDF), as we saw consistently during our firsthand tests, whether fake trees or real trees are better for the environment, National Tree Company’s 7.5-foot Feel Real Downswept Douglas Fir, National Tree Company 7.5-foot Downswept Douglas Fir Pencil Slim, Home Decorators Collection Swiss Mountain Black Spruce Twinkly Rainbow Christmas Tree, The Best Gift Wrapping Ideas and Trim to Make Your Holidays Merry, Kitchen Basics for Hosting Your First Thanksgiving, The Best Holiday Cookie Baking Equipment and Gear. But a few trees in our test group run their wiring through the “trunk” (the metal pipe the branches mount to) and automatically connect when you stack the sections atop one another during initial setup. That’s impressive for a total outlay of $225, barely half the cost of the top-pick Downswept Douglas Fir and less than one-fifth the cost of the upgrade-pick Vermont White Spruce. The authors concluded that while the proportion of trees made with lead-stabilized PVC had “decreased only modestly” in the 20 years preceding 2004, “the amount of lead stabilizer used has apparently been reduced to a much larger extent,” suggesting a long-term trend toward low-lead or lead-free artificial trees. Price. At just 32 inches wide, it’s barely half the width of the Downswept Douglas Fir on which it’s based. People often overlook the fact that they’ll need to store an artificial tree for 10 or 11 months out of the year, Larry Gurino of House of Holiday pointed out. We urge you to turn off your ad blocker for The Telegraph website so that you can continue to access our quality content in the future. It may ease the sting to remember that you’re making at least a 10-year investment. If realism isn’t your cup of tea, or if you simply prefer the Jet Age look of a different-color tree, we recommend the National Tree Company 7.5-foot Winchester White Pine with Clear Lights (WCHW7-300-75). The stand comes with its own carrying case, and when you aren’t using the keys for fastening the trunk in place, you can attach them to a carabiner to ensure they won’t get lost in storage. Read customer reviews and common Questions and Answers for The Holiday Aisle® Part #: HLDY7717 on this page. Read more: Where to buy a real Christmas tree - and what is the best to buy? We’ve had our Xmas tree from Nearly Natural for over 5 years, at first I was a bit hesitant, as this was our first fake Christmas tree. Known as the most popular Christmas tree species in Europe, the Nordmann fir is renowned for its stately shape and rich green colour. This makes the “flip tree” system not just handy but also a practical necessity. Nearly Natural was founded in 2002 with over 75 years of botanical experience, we are pioneers in the artificial floral industry, providing customers wit... Browse. 7.5 ft. Cashmere Slim Artificial Christmas Tree with Clear Lights You've heard of "slim fit" jeans, right, You've heard of "slim fit" jeans, right, Well, how about a "slim fit" Christmas tree. Ditto the remote control for lights and the boxes of extra bulbs—each item has a dedicated interior pocket. In 2018, he established Wirecutter’s ongoing collaboration with The New York Times’s Smarter Living. Viewed from a distance, the shape looks like someone curtsying in a hoopskirt, and it’s cute. And with 750 bulbs, the Downswept Douglas Fir meets our recommendation of 100 bulbs per foot of tree height. 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