Artificial Christmas tree - Wikipedia

Artificial Christmas tree – Wikipedia

An synthetic Christmas tree is a man-made pine or fir tree manufactured for the particular goal of use as a Christmas tree. The earliest synthetic Christmas bushes had been wood, tree-shaped pyramids or feather bushes, each developed by Germans. Most fashionable bushes are manufactured from polyvinyl chloride (PVC) however many different forms of bushes have been and can be found, together with aluminum Christmas bushes and fiber-optic illuminated Christmas bushes.

Historical past[edit]

The primary synthetic Christmas bushes had been developed in Germany throughout the 19th century,[1] although earlier examples exist.[2] These “bushes” had been made utilizing goose feathers that had been dyed inexperienced.[1] The German feather bushes had been one response by Germans to continued deforestation in Germany.[3] Developed within the 1880s, the feather bushes grew to become more and more standard throughout the early a part of the 20th century.[3] The German feather bushes finally made their technique to america the place they grew to become relatively standard as properly.[4][5] In actual fact, the usage of pure Christmas bushes in america was pre-dated by a sort of synthetic tree.[2] These first bushes had been wood, tree-shaped pyramids lit by candles, they had been developed in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, by the German Moravian Church in 1747.[6]

Sorts of synthetic bushes[edit]


An instance of an vintage feather Christmas tree

Feather Christmas bushes, initially of German origin, grew to become standard in america as properly. Feather bushes had been initially manufactured from green-dyed goose feathers which had been connected to wire branches.[4] These wire branches had been then wrapped round a central dowel which acted because the trunk[4] Feather Christmas bushes ranged broadly in measurement, from a small 5-centimeter (2-inch) tree to a big 2.5-meter (98-inch) tree bought in malls throughout the 1920s.[5] Typically, the tree branches had been tipped with synthetic crimson berries which acted as candle holders.[4] The branches had been broadly spaced to maintain the candles from beginning a fireplace, which allowed ample house for ornamentation.[4] Different advantages touted for feather bushes included the elimination of a visit to the tree lot and the shortage of shed needles.[4]

In 1930 a British-based Addis Housewares Firm created the primary synthetic Christmas tree produced from brush bristles.[7] The bushes had been produced from the identical animal-hair bristles utilized in bathroom brushes, save they had been dyed inexperienced.[2]


Aluminum bushes had been manufactured in america, first in Chicago in 1958,[8] and later in Manitowoc, Wisconsin the place the vast majority of the bushes had been produced.[9] Aluminum bushes had been manufactured into the 1970s,[8] and had their top of recognition from their inception till about 1965.[10][11] That 12 months A Charlie Brown Christmas aired for the primary time, and its detrimental portrayal of aluminum Christmas bushes is credited for a subsequent decline in gross sales.[8]


Most synthetic Christmas bushes are produced from PVC plastic. PVC bushes are fire-retardant however not fire-resistant.[2] Many of those bushes are made in China; from January to August 2005 $69 million price of synthetic bushes from China entered america.[12]

The prelit tree has turn out to be more and more standard in america and Germany as properly, as a consequence of added ease of not having to string one’s personal lights. Sorts of lights standard at present embody incandescent lights (additionally known as “mini lights”) and LED lights (the place every bulb has its personal socket, stopping the entire string from going out ought to one bulb burn out).[13][14] Prelit bushes are topic to the necessary laws for the protection requirements {of electrical} merchandise and have to fulfill security requirements authorized by a nationally acknowledged testing laboratory reminiscent of UL (Underwriters Labs), CSA (Canadian Requirements Affiliation), ETL (Intertek), GS, BS and RoHS.[15] Synthetic Christmas bushes could also be “frosted” or “glittered” and designed for outside makes use of with UV components.[16] Plastic bushes can are available a wide range of completely different colours,[2] and one kind got here with built-in audio system and an MP3 participant.[17]

Corporations reminiscent of Mountain King, Barcana and the Nationwide Tree Firm have marketed more and more reasonable PVC bushes made to intently resemble Douglas fir, Ponderosa pine or different widespread forms of Christmas bushes.[4] Throughout the 1990s bushes not solely began appearing extra reasonable however some additionally smelled extra reasonable.[4] Many of those extra fashionable fashions include pre-strung lights and hinged branches which merely needed to be snapped into place.[4] Extra not too long ago, firms reminiscent of Balsam Hill have begun to make use of (PE) plastic molded from pure tree branches in an effort to create extra reasonable synthetic Christmas bushes.[18][19]


A stand-alone the wrong way up Christmas tree

Developments in synthetic tree consumption have continually developed and plenty of designer and different forms of synthetic Christmas bushes have appeared available on the market. Fiber optic bushes are available two main varieties, one resembles a conventional Christmas tree.[17] The opposite kind of fiber optic Christmas tree is one the place your entire tree is manufactured from wispy fiber optic cable, a tree composed completely of sunshine.[17] David Gutshall, of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, obtained a patent for the latter kind of fiber optic tree in 1998.[20]

One Dallas-based firm affords “holographic mylar” bushes in lots of hues.[2] Tree-shaped objects produced from such supplies as cardboard,[21] glass,[22] ceramic or different supplies might be present in use as tabletop decorations.[citation needed] Upside-down synthetic Christmas bushes had been initially launched as a advertising gimmick; they allowed customers to get nearer to ornaments on the market in retail shops in addition to opened up ground house for extra merchandise.[23] There have been three kinds of upside-down bushes, these bolted to the ceiling, stand alone bushes with a base, and half-trees bolted to partitions.[24]


The custom of placing up and adorning a Christmas tree is nothing new. It’s the iconic image of the vacation and has turn out to be a focus within the properties of those that take part in Christmas festivities. It’s a ritual exercise that many have fond reminiscences of and there’s a nostalgia to having an actual tree. Nonetheless, there was a change from basic to fashionable and this modification occurred when quite a few different artifacts grew to become plasticized. The tradition of Christmas intersects with the tradition of plastic, and so the factitious Christmas tree is born. Its reputation has grown since its invention, creating a brand new demand. “Experiences cite a 34 p.c drop in dwell tree gross sales the previous decade, and a 30 p.c rise final 12 months alone within the sale of faux bushes, to 9.6 million”.[25] A requirement for plastic begins with economics: how low-cost plastic objects are in comparison with their non-plastic counterpart. “…unsure financial instances guarantee extra People can be taking a look at Christmas bushes as an funding…a single synthetic Christmas tree prices 70 p.c lower than the acquisition of ten actual Christmas bushes over the identical time frame”.[26] All of this blended with our comfort tradition that enjoys the convenience of recent applied sciences, the factitious Christmas tree has blossomed into the vacation staple that it’s at present.

In 1992, in america, about 46 p.c of properties displaying Christmas bushes displayed a man-made tree.[27] Twelve years later, a 2004 ABC Information/The Washington Submit ballot revealed that 58 p.c of U.S. residents used a man-made tree as an alternative of a pure tree.[28] The actual versus synthetic tree debate has been standard in mass media by way of the early 21st century. The talk is a frequent subject of stories articles throughout the Christmas vacation season.[12][29] Early 21st century protection of the talk centered on the lower in pure Christmas tree gross sales, and rise in synthetic tree gross sales over the late 1990s and early 2000s.[28][29]

The rise in reputation of synthetic bushes didn’t go unnoticed by the Christmas tree farming business in america. In 2004, the U.S. Christmas tree business employed the promoting company Smith-Harroff to spearhead an advert marketing campaign aimed toward rejuvenating lagging gross sales of pure bushes.[12] A 1975 ballot by Michigan State College confirmed the explanation why customers had been starting to choose synthetic over pure Christmas bushes.[4] The explanations included security, one-time buying, and environmental accountability however the largest cause respondents gave pollsters was no messy needle clear up.[4]


A typical 1.8-meter-tall (6 ft) recycled PVC Christmas tree made by Oncor

Most synthetic Christmas bushes are manufactured within the Pearl River Delta space in China.[30] Between January and September 2011, over 79.7 million {dollars} price of synthetic Christmas bushes had been exported to america. The variety of synthetic Christmas bushes imported to United States rose 139 million in the identical nine-month interval in 2012. Promoters of synthetic bushes spotlight them as handy, reusable, and of higher high quality than synthetic bushes of previous. Supporters additionally be aware that some residence buildings have banned pure bushes due to hearth considerations.[30]

There may be additionally a sturdy marketplace for synthetic Christmas bushes in Poland. An estimated 20 p.c of all Christmas bushes bought in Poland are synthetic, and plenty of are made domestically by particular person households. One producer from Koziegłówki[who?] acknowledged that each different home was a man-made tree producer. The bushes are produced from a particular movie which is imported largely from China or Thailand. Total households participate in manufacturing and the bushes are bought all through Poland with some being exported to the Czech Republic and Slovakia.[31] The primary synthetic Christmas tree producer in Poland is in Piła.

Environmental points[edit]

Basic points[edit]

The talk concerning the environmental influence of synthetic bushes is ongoing. Usually, pure tree growers contend that synthetic bushes are extra environmentally dangerous than their pure counterpart.[32] On the opposite aspect of the talk, commerce teams such because the American Christmas Tree Affiliation, proceed to refute that synthetic bushes are extra dangerous to the surroundings and keep that the PVC utilized in Christmas bushes has wonderful recyclable properties.[33] One researcher at Kansas State College known as the concept synthetic bushes are eco-friendly an “city delusion”.[34]

Lead contamination[edit]

Previously, lead was usually used as a stabilizer in PVC, however it’s now prohibited by Chinese language legal guidelines.[citation needed] Most PVC supplies for making synthetic Christmas bushes are actually utilizing tin as a stabilizer.[citation needed] PVC was utilized in a number of the 2007 recalled Chinese language toys.[35] A 2004 research discovered that whereas normally synthetic bushes pose little well being threat from lead contamination, there do exist “worst-case situations” the place main well being dangers to younger kids are current.[36] The lead writer of the 2004 research, Dr. Richard Maas, famous in 2005: “We discovered that if we go away one in all these bushes standing for every week, and we wipe underneath the tree we’ll discover massive quantities of lead mud in lots of circumstances underneath the tree”.[37]

In 2007, U.S. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) requested the Shopper Merchandise Security Fee to research lead ranges in Chinese language imported synthetic bushes.[35] Lead-free synthetic Christmas bushes do exist; for instance, one U.S.-based firm makes use of barium as an alternative of lead as a stabilizer in its PVC bushes.[35] A 2008 U.S. Environmental Safety Company report discovered that because the PVC in synthetic Christmas bushes aged it started to degrade.[38] The report decided that of the 50 million synthetic bushes in america roughly 20 million had been 9 or extra years previous, the purpose the place harmful lead contamination ranges are reached.[38]

See additionally[edit]


  1. ^ a b Forbes, Bruce David. Christmas: A Candid Historical past, (Google Books), College of California Press
    , 2007, pp. 121–22, (ISBN 0520251040)
  2. ^ a b c d e f Perkins, Broderick. “Fake Christmas Tree Crop Yields Particular Issues Archived 2008-09-08 on the Wayback Machine”, Realty Instances, December 12, 2003, accessed December 15, 2008.
  3. ^ a b John, J. A Christmas Compendium, (Google Books), Continuum Worldwide Publishing Group, 2005, p. 129, (ISBN 0826487491).
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j ok Marling, Karal Ann. Merry Christmas!: Celebrating America’s Biggest Vacation, (Google Books), Harvard College Press, 2000, pp. 58–62, (ISBN 0674003187).
  5. ^ a b Silverthorne, Elizabeth. Christmas in Texas, (Google Books), Texas A&M College Press, 1994, p. 62, (ISBN 0890965781).
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  9. ^ Andrews, Candice Gaukel. Nice Wisconsin Winter Weekends, (Google Books), Large Earth Publishing, 2006, p. 178, (ISBN 1931599718)
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  11. ^ Pinto, Barbara. “City Leads Aluminum Christmas Tree Revival”, ABC Information, December 18, 2005, accessed December 14, 2008.
  12. ^ a b c Garofoli, Joe. “O Christmas tree, are ye actual or pretend?,” San Francisco Chronicle, by way of Scripps Howard Information Service, December 16, 2005, accessed December 14, 2008
  13. ^ “Simplify Your Christmas Adorning”. CBS Information. December 4, 2010. Retrieved July 16, 2015.
  14. ^ Deck the Halls’ Safely: CSPS Estimates Greater than 15,000 Vacation Adorning Accidents Throughout November and December”. US Shopper Product Security Fee. Retrieved July 17, 2015.
  15. ^ “Selections Abound for PVC Christmas Timber this Season Archived 2009-01-10 on the Wayback Machine”, Vinyl Information Service (The Vinyl Institute), December 3, 2008, accessed December 15, 2008.
  16. ^ a b c Neer, Katherine. “How Christmas Timber Work Archived 2008-12-24 on the Wayback Machine”,, December 2006, accessed December 15, 2008.
  17. ^ Johnson, Kirk (November 27, 2010). “How Pretty Are Your Polyethylene Branches”. The New York Instances. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  18. ^ Jameson, Marni (December 2, 2011). “Singing the Praises of Faux Christmas Timber”. Solar-Sentinel. Retrieved July 2, 2015.
  19. ^ Chartrand, Sabra. “Patents; A bunch of merchandise supply new methods to make the vacation season just a bit bit extra creative”, The New York Instances, December 14, 1998, accessed December 15, 2008.
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  21. ^ “Glass Christmas Tree Archived 2008-12-27 on the Wayback Machine”, Diablo Glass College, one-day course itemizing, accessed December 16, 2008.
  22. ^ “Demand Grows for Upside Down Christmas Tree”, (Audio), Nationwide Public Radio, “All Issues Thought-about”, November 9, 2005, accessed December 16, 2008.
  23. ^ Wilson, Craig. “Faux bushes flip Christmas on its head”, USA At this time, November 10, 2008, accessed December 16, 2008.
  24. ^ Langer, Gary. (2004, December 23). Ballot: Faux Christmas Timber Develop In style. Retrieved from ABC Information:
  25. ^ Palmer, J. B. (2008, December 3). Selections Abound for PVC Christmas Timber This Season. Retrieved from Vinyl Information Service: “Tree Selections”. Archived from the unique on 2013-12-13. Retrieved 2013-12-13.
  26. ^ “Vacation bushes in oversupply,” The New York Instances, November 30, 1992, accessed December 14, 2008.
  27. ^ a b Langer, Gary. “Ballot: Faux Christmas Timber Develop In style,” ABC Information, December 23, 2004, accessed December 14, 2008.
  28. ^ a b Muñoz, Sara, Schaefer. “Struggle Earlier than Christmas: Actual Timber vs. Fakes Archived 2016-01-21 on the Wayback Machine,” The Wall Avenue Journal, December 21, 2006, accessed December 14, 2008.
  29. ^ a b Langer, Gary. “Ballot: Faux Christmas Timber Develop In style”, ABC Information, 23 December 2004, accessed March 29, 2009.
  30. ^ “Pining Fir the Holidays Archived 2009-01-13 on the Wayback Machine”, Warsaw Voice, December 19, 2002, accessed March 29, 2009.
  31. ^ Hayes, Sharon Caskey. “Grower says actual Christmas bushes are higher for surroundings than synthetic ones”, Kingsport Instances-Information (Kingsport, Tennessee), November 26, 2008, accessed December 14, 2008.
  32. ^ “Details on PVC Utilized in Synthetic Christmas Timber Archived 2008-12-29 on the Wayback Machine”, American Christmas Tree Affiliation, official website, accessed December 15, 2008.
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  35. ^ Maas, Richard P. et al. Synthetic Christmas bushes: how actual are the lead publicity dangers? (Summary by way of PubMed) Journal of Environmental Well being, December 2004; 67(5): 20–4, 32, accessed December 15, 2008.
  36. ^ “Lead Present in Vacation Decorations Archived 2008-06-16 on the Wayback Machine”, WSBTV (Atlanta), November 29, 2005, accessed December 15, 2008.
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