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The not-so-traditional Christmas tree

It is the merriest time of the year again: Sinterklaas has only just arrived and many of us are already preparing for Christmas. Everywhere you see Christmas lights popping up and sporadically a beautifully decorated Christmas tree. Do you want to give an original Christmas gift this year? Send a stone pine as a 'living Christmas card'! It is not only very modern to have a 'different kind' of Christmas tree, also in old traditions all kinds of evergreen species were brought into the house in the winter - not just pine trees. You can read about this exactly and why our baby stone pine trees are perfectly suitable as a Christmas gift in this blog.


Midwinter green

No one knows exactly where the Christmas tree tradition as we know it today comes from, but there are many predecessors. For example, the Egyptians decorated their homes with evergreen palm fronds in honour of the rebirth of their sun god Ra, to celebrate the triumph of life over death and the lengthening of the days. The Romans also brought evergreen branches into their homes to celebrate Saturnalia: a festival to honour the god Saturn and to celebrate the end of the agricultural year. The Celts decorated their temples with evergreen branches as in honour of eternal life and the Vikings believed that their sun god Balder preferred evergreen trees. They therefore decorated their houses with it to protect against the evil spirits that would come out in the darkest time of the year. The common thread in all these traditions is that evergreen trees and plants are reminiscent of the return of greener times after the end of the dark winter season.



Oh, Christmas tree

Decorating a pine tree is believed to find its origin in Germanic tradition. During the Yule time and specifically on Midwinter Night, the longest night of the year, a green tree was placed in the centre of the village and decorated with apples and other ornaments. The story goes that Martin Luther was the one who started the Christmas tree as a Protestant Christian tradition. After a walk through the forest, he was so inspired that he wanted to bring it home to his family. He did this by taking one of the trees and decorating it with candles, which were supposed to represent the starry sky. What was first seen as a pagan tradition was then gradually incorporated into Christian celebration. In the Middle Ages, trees were brought into homes throughout Northern Europe during the winter. The people who could not afford a real tree stacked wood in the shape of a pyramid, which they decorated to resemble a tree.



Modern Christmas tree

Even without Christmas as a religious celebration, many people nowadays have a Christmas tree in their home. Its festivity offers light in the dark wintertime and the greenery reminds us that in the spring the days will get longer, and the trees will sprout again. So, it doesn't really matter what kind of tree you get or give as a gift. You increase the (Christmas) ambiance with each of our evergreen trees. If you would still like a pine tree, we suggest that you go for a stone pine. Nice to give and to receive.

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