Perhaps there is no symbol to be associated more closely with the celebration of Christmas, the decorated Christmas tree. And while most modern kids wait for their presents under the Christmas tree, the tradition of decorating a coniferous tree has many old roots. Ancient pagans have attributed special powers to evergreen plants. They used them to protect their homes from malicious spirits, and then for decoration. In many Pagan religious traditions, the decoration of an evergreen tree is associated with celebrating the longest night of the year and the return of nature to life. This element is present in the celebration of the healing of the Egyptian god Ra. Also in Saturnalia, organized by the early Romans in honor of Saturn, the god of agriculture. In northern Europe, Celtic priests, called Druids, also decorate their temples with evergreen twigs as a symbol of immortality.
Linking the decorated Christmas tree to the holiday is rooted in Germany, where Christian Lutherans began to bring deciduous trees into their homes.
Legend has it that Martin Luther himself sees the sparkling candlelight on the background of dark green pine branches. This sets the beginning of the tradition of hanging lights on the Christmas tree. The popularization of this ritual is associated with Queen Victoria. Unlike its predecessors on the throne, it is very popular among its subjects. After a picture of the queen and her family in an iconic London newspaper in front of a decorated Christmas tree, fashion is spreading rapidly. It then encompasses the entire Christian world. At present, between 34 and 36 million live Christmas trees are produced each year, with over 95 percent of them coming from specialized farms.
With the popularity of this tradition, it is necessary to address issues related to the impact of Christmas trees on ecological balance. Many people consider the use of artificial tree for more ecological choice. Recent studies, however, show that in most cases even a cut tree is a better option as long as its origin is legal. Undoubtedly the most environmentally friendly solution is the decoration of a live tree in a pot. It can be planted after the holidays.
When choosing a tree you plan to plant, it is important to be sure a few things.
- Its origin: When buying a live tree you can ask the merchant for documents certifying its origin from a Bulgarian nursery. This will exclude the possibility that your tree is a victim of poaching or a species that could not survive after planting in Bulgarian climatic conditions. Most common in Christmas trees are white fir, white and black pine and plain spruce.
- Root volume: It is necessary that the top of the tree corresponds to the soil volume in the pot. The draining of the tree depends on the fine part of the root structure. For example, for a 1 meter tree, the pot must be at least 25 liters. The tree can then be grown in the pot until a maximum of two years before being planted.
- Home Location: Coniferous trees should not be placed near a direct heat source. They need a cool, bright room and daily watering with good drainage. Prolonged exposure to heat by decorative lamps may cause the needles to dry and fall. It is not advisable for the tree to remain in a heated room for more than 14 days. After this period, you can take the pot on a terrace or in a garden where you can stay until it can be planted in the spring.