A fresh-cut, real Christmas tree is generally serviceable from just after Thanksgiving to somewhat after Christmas, if it is truly fresh when set up and then well cared for. If you buy a tree, but don't plan to set it up for a few days or longer, store it in a cool location out of the wind and sun. Trees dry out rapidly on warm, windy days with direct sunlight on them. Cut 1/2 inch from the end of the trunk and place the tree in a container of cool water to help it stay fresh.
For more information on selecting the perfect tree for your family, tree care, and tree removal, read Tips for First-Time Buyers of Real Christmas Trees.
Check all electric lights and connections before decorating your tree and home.Do not use lights with worn or frayed cords and NEVER use lighted candles on your tree. Don't overload electrical circuits. Place your tree away from fireplaces, radiators, television sets and other heat sources. These elements can prematurely dry your tree. And be sure to turn off all decorations before retiring at night and any time you leave home.