Easy Being Green | Living Christmas trees

For a living Christmas tree, try the holly and the ivy

Pines, junipers, hollies, ivy topiaries and rosemary plants are available for living Christmas trees at most garden centers. These plants are available in various sizes from trees you can use on tabletop or floor or even for outdoor decorating. These plants are sold in nursery containers to make watering and drainage easy. • Be sure to buy a large saucer to place under the tree to hold water so it doesn't damage the table or floor. These plants will require watering frequently during the holidays. The living Christmas trees are grown under ideal conditions and pruned in the traditional Christmas tree shape. These plants do not normally grow this shape. • Some of the plants are slow growers, like hollies and junipers. Hollies will grow in sun or shade. Pine trees, junipers and rosemary require full sun. English ivy topiaries will grow outdoors or indoors. Norfolk Island pines are tropical plants that must grow indoors during the winter. Some of the plants available at garden centers:

Rosemary .

The fragrance of the rosemary will scent an entire room, but the plant dries out quickly in the house, so water often. Rosemary is an evergreen; plant in full sunlight outdoors. It will grow 3 feet tall and 3 feet wide.

Pines and cypress

Try eldarica, Pinus eldarica (40 feet tall and 20 feet wide); Japanese black pine, Pinus thunbergiana (20 feet tall and 20 feet wide); Austrian pine, Pinus nigra, (25 feet tall and 15 feet wide); Leyland cypress, Cupressocyparis leylandi, (30 feet tall and 25 feet wide).

Hollies

Nellie R. Stevens holly (10 to 20 feet tall and 5 to 10 feet wide); Mary Nell holly (8 to 10 feet tall and 5 feet wide); yaupon holly, which can grow 20 feet tall but is slow to grow and easy to prune.

Junipers

They have fine, scalelike foliage and are fragrant. Skyrocket, with blue-green foliage, will grow 15 feet tall, and Eastern red cedar will grow 40 feet tall and 25 feet wide.

Ivy topiary trees

Use these beautiful trees for indoor and outdoor decorations. They last for years and are easy to keep pruned.

Houseplants

Norfolk Island pines are available to grow as indoor plants.

For a living Christmas tree, try the holly and the ivy 12/20/08 [Last modified: Thursday, November 4, 2010 1:10pm]

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