Christmas Tree Storage: The Ultimate Guide

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If you have an artificial tree, you need to figure out how to store it through the year until you’re ready to display it for the holiday season. Learn about the different options and proper Christmas tree storage techniques and tips to keep your tree looking new year after year!

An artificial Christmas Tree decorated with gold ribbons and ornaments and dried orange slices.

For years we bought a fresh Christmas tree every year. Then, we would go together and pick out the perfect tree to bring home and decorate. Although I love that tradition, I don’t always love the care a real Christmas tree requires.

So we experimented a couple of years ago and bought a fake Christmas tree. I resisted it for so long because I love that fresh tree smell and the tradition of picking a tree together as a family. But now that I’ve had some time to adjust my expectations, I have to admit, and I’m thrilled with the change!

There’s just one thing I had to figure out: how to store our tree until the following year. Without proper storage, a fake tree can end up with:

  • Bent branches
  • Broken lights
  • Lost needles

Like many of you, I don’t have a ton of space for Christmas storage. So, rather than going out and renting a storage unit for all this stuff, I got real focussed on maximizing the space I do have. Seriously, my holiday decorations are stacked like a Tetris game.

Do you have an artificial Christmas tree? If so, you’ll want to check out these Christmas tree storage tips to protect your tree so you can use it for years to come!

Pink Christmas tree and christmas decorations white and gold color.  Christmas background. Happy New Year and Xmas Christmas concept.

Benefits Of Having An Artificial Christmas Tree

Before I jump into how to store your Christmas tree, I want to take a moment and cover some of the benefits of having a fake Christmas tree. I know there’s a lot of debate about whether to use or buy a real tree every year or buy an artificial tree and use it for multiple years.

Investing in an artificial tree means NOT having to deal with things like remembering to water the tree, falling needles, bugs, sap, and the time and effort it takes to find the tree and then dispose of it. There are several other reasons to invest in an artificial Christmas tree, too.

Here are a few more to consider:

  • A good artificial tree costs about 3-4 times what we used to pay for a fresh tree every year. That’s a larger upfront investment. But, we intend to keep this fake tree for at least 10 years, making it more economical in the long run.
  • Do you love colored Christmas trees? Artificial trees come in a variety of colors to add some fun to your decor (want a “white Christmas”? Get a white tree! want a “weird Christmas”? Get a yellow Christmas tree!).
  • Artificial trees are allergy-friendly.
  • Don’t love the hassle of stringing (and un-stringing) lights? Buy a pre-lit artificial tree!
  • Less worry about the tree catching fire.

Artifical christmas tree  against a bright white background.

Artificial Christmas Tree Storage Options

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There are several factors that will help determine how you store your artificial tree. Things to consider include:

  • Will you store your tree decorated or not decorated? 
  • Will you store your tree assembled or unassembled?
  • Do you want to store your tree in a heavy duty cardboard box, plastic container, or Christmas tree storage bags?

Each of these questions is important because their answers will help determine the best way to store your tree so that it stays protected and beautiful every year.

Storing Decorated Christmas Trees

Professionally decorated Christmas trees have ornaments and other elements attached using wire which means you can’t fold up the branches when you store your tree. 

If you have your tree professionally decorated, you need to plan how to store your permanently decorated tree. A box won’t work. Instead, you’ll need a large Christmas tree storage bag for assembled trees.

artifical Christmas tree with a beautiful decor in a bright interior.

Storing Your Tree Assembled Or Unassembled

Unless your tree is permanently decorated, your decision here will come down to if you have the desire to take your tree apart each year and whether you can store it fully assembled.

If you choose to take it apart each year, you can store it in a Christmas tree storage box or bag. However, if you decide to leave it assembled, you will need a Christmas tree storage bag large enough to fit around the size (height and circumference) of your tree.

Which Christmas Tree Storage Container To Use

If you choose to break down your artificial tree each year, you have more tree storage container options than you do if you leave it assembled. For example, you could use the cardboard box it came in when you bought it, a duffle-type dual zipper Christmas tree storage bag, or a plastic Christmas tree storage box.

I’ve not had much luck finding plastic storage boxes for Christmas trees online, but I do see them at big box stores fairly often, especially at the end of December/beginning of January.

This decision will come down to your storage space and personal preference based on your tree’s fit.

Eco-friendly artificial tree for the new year. A bare Christmas tree stands against a white wall. Traditions for a family holiday.

Basic Christmas Tree Storage Process

Assuming you don’t have a permanently decorated Christmas tree, here is the basic process for storing your tree after the holidays, whether you’re using boxes for Christmas tree storage or bags:

  1. Remove all the ornaments, garlands, and lights (unless it’s a prelit tree).
  2. Take your tree apart, remembering to disconnect any prelight light strands between the sections.
  3. Fold up your tree sections. You can tie it with twine or a rope to hold each section closed and protect the limbs. I like to go a step further and wrap it in a piece of fabric because I feel it’s more secure and protects better.
  4. Gently place each section into your Christmas tree storage container.
  5. Close and secure your container and store it away until next year.

Pro Tip: FREE Christmas Tree Light Storage

I got this tip a few years back, and it’s a good one. To store your Christmas tree lights (or any holiday lights), cut a piece of cardboard and wrap the land strands around and tuck in the end. You can then store your lights like files. This method of storage helps protect the lights and keeps them completely untangled. It’s not pretty, but it works great!

Set of 12 Luxury Winterberry Glass Baubles. Retro styled image of vintage Christmas decoration in a box. Christmas holidays composition. Box filled with christmas multi-colored baubles.

Tips For Effective Christmas Tree Storage

  • Accumulated moisture can harm your tree (especially if it is prelit). Store it somewhere away from humidity or water.
  • Heat and sunlight can also damage your tree. Try to store it indoors in an area that’s dark, cool, and protected.
  • If you have several Christmas decor storage containers, add labels to everything to make finding what you need easy.
  • Take care not to place your tree somewhere that it can get knocked over or fall. I recommend storing it (if possible) horizontally on the floor and against a wall.

I hope these artificial Christmas tree storage tips help you find a storage solution that not only works for your home throughout the year but also keeps your tree looking brand new for years to come!

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