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Choosing a Christmas tree is a needling issue

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For some reason Christmas gum trees never caught on in Australia, so our countrymen and women are left searching high and low – and often pay highly – for an actual pine tree to adorn our Christmas loungeroom wonderland.

The question of real or synthetic is one that is often debated by many, so we've put together a list of pros and cons that will hopefully help you come to a decision and avoid any festive season arguments.

Depending on which part of the country you come from, you might remember the family going out hunting for the perfect pine. You might have bought it, you might even have pinched it but finding your own tree can be crucial.

The smell of a freshly cut pine tree is as much a part of Christmas as tinsel for many of us. Of course, finding pine needles until June is also a big part of Christmas for those who pine for pine.

Dragging a dusty old box out of the shed and putting together a fake tree is the stuff of happy memories for many others though and that makes wood or plastic a near impossible choice for anyone who hasn’t yet decided. It can be a simple question of cost but that can go either way.

If you can find a freebie then a real tree is hard to beat. If you can’t find a free one the price can be a bit steep, depending on where you live and some shops aren’t exactly charitable when it comes to pricing the plastic variety.

The absolute cheapest solution though is to wait until after Christmas and go with plastic. You’ve seen how the department stores stock up for Christmas – they’ve got more trees than they can ever sell and a few days after December 25 they want them gone.

So if money is going to be the deciding factor, get in 365 days before Christmas and pay about $20 max. Over the course of the life of the tree, you’ll save your $20 in petrol alone.