We also found that the Winchester White Pine is more sensitive to light placement than our other picks. (It’s the only one of our picks that comes unlit.) In a design common to modern artificial trees, the Downswept Douglas Fir’s branches are all permanently mounted on hinges on the center pole (older artificial trees required you to attach branches individually via sockets). The Vermont White Spruce’s lights connect automatically, like the Downswept Douglas Fir’s, via plugs within its trunk. Twinkly dominates most of the market and offers the majority of the features mentioned above, but there are a few other options if you’re looking for smart features without so many bells and whistles. The Downswept Douglas Fir’s all-white settings give off a subtle straw-gold tone (versus pure white) that many of our staffers praised. In keeping with the budget-oriented mindset, we bought the cheapest decent set of lights we found at the local big-box store: a 500-light string of incandescents from Home Accents Holiday, for which we paid $35. On top of a nearly equivalent price, QVC charges a hefty shipping fee. Think of it as a way to get to the fun part of decorating just a little bit faster. Even inexpensive trees can look very good from across the room, and more expensive trees—those with a high proportion of realistic branch tips—can look truly real. Low maintenance and low stress: There’s no need to water a fake tree or to shimmy underneath the thing to secure it in its stand. The wheels make moving the tree into position and back into storage much easier. Are you tired of boring white Christmas tree lights? Be sure to check any tree lights for exposed wires, and never hang ornaments directly from the wires, as the weight and/or sharp points on a hanger can compromise and expose the protective coating. It simply gives you more customization and control over the lights, the schedule, and other features that often require finicky controls. If you want a smart Christmas tree—one that you can turn on and off with your phone or voice commands—there’s not much out there for you right now. Even guide author Tim Heffernan, a committed fan of incandescent bulbs with minimal gimmicks, happily admitted that these are some wonderful effects. Although they won’t deceive anyone under direct light and close observation—they’re still a bit too slick—in the dark and under the soft glow of its 1,800 lights, a smattering of these unkempt, upswept branch tips flashing their pale underbellies creates a lovely overall visual texture. Puleo is not as widely available as some other brands, but its quality ranks among the best. Farm But that small girth means it can fit in spaces where a full-width tree can’t. The Downswept Douglas Fir, like most contemporary prelit trees, features LED bulbs rather than traditional incandescents. (He also noted that when live trees get thrown out, they often become free mulch for public parks—in effect, they’re recycled.) Shop Evergreen Classics 7.5-ft Holiday Symphony Pre-lit Traditional Artificial Christmas Tree with 435 Multi-function Color Changing LED Lights in the Artificial Christmas Trees department at Lowe's.com. A healthy and well watered tree caught on fire immediately but eventually went out (though it’s important to note that their test tree had no ornaments or lights on it, and stood against a concrete wall), while a dry, unwatered tree burned furiously. XODO DL1 Indoor/Outdoor WiFi RGB String Lights 35ft 100LED, Smart Controlled by App, Infinite Color String Lights for Christmas Tree Or Around House, Works with Alexa, Google Home, Siri (35ft) 3.4 out of … Although live-tree farms contribute marginally to the consequences of fertilizer and pesticide use, they add value to land that might otherwise be valuable only to developers. Most trees make you hunt down the plugs on each section and either hook them together or draw them down through the tree to a common power-strip-like master plug. Although the quality of this line appears statistically comparable to that of a National Tree model, the overall purchase is a weaker value in comparison. Balsam Hill’s 7.5-foot Nordmann Fir Color + Clear LED tree comes from the company’s “most realistic” line, a category that has increased in popularity over the past few years. All it took was one call to customer service, a $15 charge, and 48 hours before Ben had a replacement cord in hand and the tree was merry and bright once more. The Vermont White Spruce’s high number of realistic branches—those made of polyethylene and molded from real branches—also make this tree particularly heavy relative to our other picks. We’re highlighting this model in particular because, like the branch-tip construction, its lights are the same as those on our pick, the popular and widely appealing Downswept Douglas Fir. Upgrade your lifestyleDigital Trends helps readers keep tabs on the fast-paced world of tech with all the latest news, fun product reviews, insightful editorials, and one-of-a-kind sneak peeks.Digital Trends may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. And the stiff, matte-green PVC “needles” make them look like bottle brushes. If you have the budget, though, a smart Christmas tree opens up features that you just can’t match with other options. Orchestrate an exuberant musical performance during this Christmas season with the evergreen classics® 7.5 Feet holiday symphony™ spruce artificial With no decorations on the tree, its horizontal lines are pretty symmetrical when you view it straight-on, even when it’s at full fluff. The dual coloured bulbs can be changed from warm white to multicoloured lights. Our pick is the Wyze Plug for its simplicity and low price. These trees come in different shapes and sizes from under 4 … Another benefit to smart Christmas trees is that there are numerous effects available to users. The incandescent version of the Vermont White Spruce uses separate strings for each mode, so if you prefer all-white or all-color, only half the number (810 bulbs) are illuminated—which produces an effect that’s not appreciably different from that of the Downswept Douglas Fir’s 750 lights. Control your tree from your mobile phone (up to 6 unique LED strands) Countless preset color mod This pick’s intentionally rough-around-the-edges silhouette and dual-color needles make it a perfectly imperfect option. There’s voice control, too. Smart LED Christmas Tree Lights $29.95 $59.95 You Save 50% ( $30.00 ) Length 5M (197") Good For Small Tree 10M (393") Good For Most Trees 20M (797") Good For Very Large Trees Also, what was once a genuine health concern—the use of lead as a PVC stabilizer—is no longer an issue in most artificial trees sold in the US, according to National Tree Company and the American Christmas Tree Association, which represents artificial-tree companies. Safer: A New York Times article found that while around 160 home fires a year involve Christmas trees, the National Fire Protection Association reports “a disproportionate share of Christmas tree fires involved natural trees.” In 2019, a local CBS news station based in Washington D.C. attempted to light an artificial tree on fire with a lighter, but didn’t succeed until they poured around a gallon of gasoline over it. The most obvious benefit of a smart tree isn’t that it is prestrung, but that the lights themselves can be manipulated and changed at will. Because the lights are already smart, there’s no need for a smart plug — you can set schedules and control them with your voice, assuming the light brand you choose works with smart assistants. If you’re looking for the most affordable option, a $25 smart plug can add smart features to your existing tree and lights. 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