Fortunately, there are Christmas tree growers and suppliers who will deliver to your door to keep your spruce spruce and your car boot bootiful. Tree farm owners point out that it is usually better to buy direct from the grower to ensure a better chance of getting a freshly cut tree and a guarantee that it was grown in the UK. There are also distributors who use reputable, smaller independent UK growers to provide a wider service, so they are worth supporting.
Pines and Needles is a family business started when brothers Josh and Sam Lyle, then aged 13 and 15, filled a horsebox with trees from the family farm and took them to London to sell. Their trees are grown on its plantation in Perth, Scotland, with delivery price options starting at £19.95. For an extra fee, the delivery person will put the tree up for you, with lights. (Or buy in person from their sites in London.) The firm also offers a full Christmas home decoration service, with indoor and outdoor lighting, handmade holly and mistletoe garlands, and bespoke table centrepieces.
Send Me A Christmas Tree grows 60,000 trees on its sites in the Sussex countryside, and is a growing business, planting more trees than it sells. It offers free 48-hour delivery to anywhere on the UK mainland, giving this service added value. Farmer and business owner Tom made this cute infographic on why to buy a real tree, This year’s cut-off date for trees and festive wreaths is 20 December 2013 with last delivery on Saturday 21 or Monday 23 December.
Scottish Christmas Trees is an award-winning family firm growing sustainably managed Christmas trees (for every one it fells, it plants another) on its managed plantations in Dumfries and Galloway. It cuts to order, and says if there is a genuine problem with your tree, they will send another free of charge. Delivery costs vary but a standard mainland charge for a tree costing between £30 and £125 will be £9.95. Here’s a very nice Scottish man to tell us about the kinds of trees they grow:
The British Christmas Tree Growers Association is the trade association for specialist tree growers, and promotes trees grown sustainably. With more than 320 members selling eight million trees a year, they know a thing or two about needle drop. Sort your Scots pine from your Norway Spruce, and search by postcode to find a retailer near you, many of whom deliver. For an extra fee, some will take the tree away again at the end of the season.
Crocus, the hugely popular gardening site, has small to medium trees in pots, good for tabletops, that can be planted outside after Christmas. A 1-1.2m Nordmann in a pot complete with rootball, for example, is £39.99. It also has gardening gifts, so you can tick off some Christmas shopping at the same time, and Christmas lighting, such as these delightful leaf skeleton lights for £24.99, made with preserved rubber tree leaves. Last delivery is 21 December.
Deliver Me A Christmas Tree delivers traditional and non-drop trees grown in Kent to London and the Home Counties. Delivery is £12.99 per order and, for the eco-customer, there is a collection and recycling service, at no extra charge. Tree prices vary depending on how you want it: au naturel, with stand, with lights, installed and/or decorated; from £34.95 for a four-foot Nordman Fir to £298.86 for a 12-footer with 480 LED lights. Last orders are on 22 December, with deliveries in London right up until Christmas Eve.