O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree — should you get a real or fake one?

It's a debate that comes up every winter season. Some will say that a live Colorado pine is a holiday tradition, while others will advocate for the convenience of a reusable tree. I've been on both sides of the aisle.

My extended family is staunchly pro-real tree. As a kid at my grandma's house, I remember getting our tree delivered on Christmas Eve. We'd decorate it that night before opening presents in the morning and leave it up through January.

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I love that tradition, but now that I'm a mid-twenty-something with roommates, I'm a little too lazy for it. Instead, I put my fake tree up at the beginning of December and take it down whenever I get around to it (this can take months...don't judge me).

So, should you get a real or fake tree? That's up to you, but there is an argument in favor of the former: the environment.

Dan Otis // Unsplash
Dan Otis // Unsplash
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According to The Nature Conservancy (TNC), a real tree actually helps to fight climate change and support forests, even though a farmer had to cut it down.

"Out of the 350-500 million growing on tree farms across the U.S., only 30 million trees are harvested for Christmas each year. Buying real trees will help keep tree farms in business — and in turn keep their lands covered in the healthy forest habitat that wildlife depends on to survive," said TNC. "And what's more, once all the festivities are done, these trees can be recycled and given a second life."

Artificial trees, on the other hand, are less easily recycled and often end up in landfills. However, The New York Times notes that reusing your fake tree does lower its environmental impact.

If you do decide to get a real tree, you could cut it down yourself — in Larimer County, that is. Find out how to cut your own Colorado Christmas tree here.

Do you prefer real or fake Christmas trees? Let us know your thoughts in the poll below.

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