To ensure a wide choice, buy your tree early in the season. Water it every day, and prevent needle loss by storing it in a shed, garage, or greenhouse with good natural light for a few weeks before bringing it inside. Display your tree in a cool place indoors, keeping it well watered, and repot it in the New Year.
When to plant: Late winter to early spring.
At their best: All year round.
Time to complete: 1 hour.
You will need: Large plastic pot, broken clay pot pieces, soil-based ericaceous potting mix, sturdy gloves, well-rotted organic matter – such as manure, all-purpose granular fertilizer, clippers.
When the festive season is over, store your tree for a few weeks in a shed, as you did before bringing it into the house for Christmas. Water it frequently, and don’t allow the soil to dry out.
Prepare a new container
Buy a plastic pot, which will be light and easy to move around, one size larger than the original container. Put some broken clay pot pieces over the drainage holes at the bottom and add a layer of soil on top.
Remove the tree
Wearing heavy-duty gloves, squeeze the tree’s pot around the sides to dislodge the root ball, and then slide it out. Place the tree in its new pot.
Check that there is 2 in (5 cm) between the top of the root ball and the pot rim. Fill in around the roots with soil mixed with some fertilizer.
Water the tree well. Trim back the stems lightly with clippers to create a cone shape. If there are two stems at the top, cut one back to a bud to leave a single “leader.”
Tips: Trimming firs
Fir stems end with a three-pronged fork; to trim them, cut out the middle prong, which will stimulate bushy growth along the stem. Do not cut the single, main “leader” stem at the top.