This post was originally published on DIY Network’s blog Made + Remade in December 2014.
I can tell you one thing you won’t want to be dealing with at 2am – a fallen Christmas tree. I suspect my own err was loading on the ornaments too early; the weight of the ornaments (which of course were hung with more concentration in the front of the tree than in the back) in addition to continued settling of the branches, forced our tree to land smack in the middle of our living room. And in the wee hours of the morning, it’s not a sound that you forget very easily. It’s not too late, everyone. Do what you can to secure your own Christmas tree.
Let’s face it. If you have a real tree, you can’t expect that it has grown vertically or evenly, even if it looks perfect at the tree farm or staked for display at the store. Remove the roots – its balance – and anything could happen.
The most pertinent advice I can offer regarding securing your Christmas Tree is that once you have it in the stand and as upright as possible, let the branches settle indoors for 24 hours. Monitor it closely. During this time, you’ll be able to re-adjust your tree so that its position is ideal, and it’s not willing to sway when you tug and push on the trunk.
Weight on the branches is always going to be a concern of mine after having lost almost all of our fragile ornaments (protecting our hardwood floors from water spills, another valid concern), so I’ve taken to using shims beneath the side of the tree stand that faces into the room, not so much to force the tree backwards, but as a way to reinforce that if it’s going to tip, it’ll tip into the corner of the room and catch itself. Also a good tip if you have a pushy toddler or pets that are inclined to be toying with your decor.
Check your tree daily, whenever you water it, and if it seems wobbly, be sure to adjust it.
- Loop and knot a piece of long fine gauge wire around the mid-upper trunk. Tie the long ends of the wire to a hook (like this one) on the wall using a double-sided sticky mounting square. While it may not be enough to prevent a tip 100%, it will be enough to provide some balance. Best of all, you can monitor the tension or slack in these wires to easily check if your tree is shifting in its stand.
- Installing eye hooks into your wall to support it is a more secure method that has been known to work – this is a good tip if you’re dealing with a 10-footer with a higher center of gravity in a little stand.
Share more helpful ideas with us in the comments.