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When does your Christmas tree go up?

Christmas tree

I’m pleased to say I’ve welcomed December with open arms – stocking up on mulled wine, nibbling on a mince pie or two and putting up our Christmas tree. This year the pièce de résistance is some giant baubles!

OK, I was a little premature putting my Christmas tree up in the last weekend of November, but I like to enjoy the festive month knowing that everything is ready.

Yes, I’ve already done the shopping and wrapped the majority of presents, but this means I can use the time to catch up with friends, family and loved ones over the month ahead.

My Christmas tree antics have generated some office discussions about when it’s the ‘right’ time to put up a tree – and whether a fake is fine or only the real thing will do.

Which? Convo team member Alex told me that he’s bought a tree that’s collected and replanted for reuse the following year. Although I use an old artificial tree that has been passed down to me, I love the idea of a tree that can be reused year-after-year.

And with Convo editor Patrick wearing his Christmas jumper (sorry Patrick, your ‘winter’ jumper) through the cold months, I think there are a few of us that like to get into the festive mood nice and early.

Fake vs real Christmas trees

On our Facebook page you’ve been discussing the real vs fake dilemma. Jenn told us she has an artificial tree for practical reasons:

‘I once had a real one and I was still hoovering the needles up in June.’

Rose-Marie has a solution to this dilemma:

‘Get a non-drop real tree that doesn’t drop needles. Expensive but worth it. Getting my tree this Thursday.’

And Arthur told us he buys a real tree for nostalgic reasons:

‘A real tree every time, the smell of it always reminds me of Christmas as a child.’

When do you put your Christmas tree up – and do you go for a fake tree or the real thing? Perhaps you’re like Anne and her husband who rotate their chosen trees:

‘We have to take it in turns! He likes a white artificial tree (gross!) And I like a big tall real tree so the fairy at the top is bent over!! White tree this year alas!!’

Lesley-Jane Smith says:
7 December 2014

Our family have always gone with the 12 days of Christmas. Every year I ask my mum when the 12 days start, and every year we cant remember if it is …. up 6 days before, down 6 days after. OR 12 before and 12 after. AND every year we go with 12 and 12. We have been dong this since the 60’s.
Viva the artificial tree, simply no mess.


Counting from Christmas Day [the first day of Christmas], the twelfth day is January 5th. The convention is that Christmas decorations should be taken down then as the Twelfth Night is the end of the festival. Increasingly, January 6th is the dismantling day and I notice around where we live that many houses are still festooned with dangling strands of twinkling lights, Father Christmas is still being bidden to go up to the chimbley and relieve himself of some parcels, and the tree still stands proud in all its sparkling finery. Perhaps some folk will take their lights down this weekend but more and more are leaving them draped along the gutters for years on end.


” In the British Empire (including the American colonies), Wednesday 2 September 1752 was followed by Thursday 14 September 1752.”

Under the Julian calender this new-fangled 6th January has no basis whatsoever : )

And just for fun many countries started the new year on Christmas day.