The Fraser Fir is more well known in the US than the UK but is gaining popularity because of its shape and scent. Often thought of as the best of both worlds between the Nordmann Fir and the Norway Spruce, it has a wonderful pine scent like the Norway Spruce but is considered a ‘non-drop’ tree like the Nordmann Fir. The Fraser Fir is now the best selling tree in the US for this reason and we expect it to give the Nordmann Fir a run for its money in the coming years!
The Fraser Fir tree originates in the United States in the South-Eastern states however is now also grown in the Scottish Highlands. The best selling tree in the US, the Fraser Fir is known for its pointed, bushy shape, its ‘non-drop’ needles and its wonderful citrus-like pine scent. Famously, the Fraser Fir is frequently chosen as the official tree of the White House and the Obamas were pictured receiving their Fraser Fir Christmas tree in 2012. Many consider the Fraser Fir as possessing the ideal qualities for an indoor Christmas tree, including excellent needle retention (even through shipping and transport), soft needles which are gentle to the touch, a ‘traditional’ Christmas tree fragrance and needles that point upward which make for easy decorating. It typically takes on average 8 years to grown a medium to large sized Fraser Fir and whilst it is most popular in the US, it is fast growing in popularity in the UK.
The Fraser Fir has a very traditional Christmas tree shape and is similar to the Norway Spruce in its pyramid-like appearance. Similarly, the needles of the Fraser Fir also gently point upward also like the Norway Spruce. For this reason, it makes for an excellent tree for decorating with Christmas tree ornaments and lights! The colouring is a beautiful deep green with a hint of blue. Despite having the same upward pointing needles as the Norway Spruce, the Fraser Fir’s needles tend to be softer. Whilst they are not quite as soft as the Nordmann Fir, they are still less prickly than the Norway Spruce and have far better needle retention. Fraser Firs are typically very dense however they tend to be more narrow around the base meaning they are a great choice for those with smaller spaces. Because of the density, you don’t have to sacrifice the full look of the tree whilst ensuring it still fits in your home!
Perhaps not the most exciting way to describe a Christmas tree, the Fraser Fir is nevertheless a great choice if you can’t decide between a Nordmann Fir and a Norway Spruce. It’s ideal if you want a full, bushy tree but are a bit limited on space as even though they come in various heights, they are usually more narrow at the bottom. The shape is full, the colour deep and the needles last well indoors meaning that the Fraser Fir can also be considered a ‘non-drop’ tree. The Fraser Fir will still lose some needles, however proper care for your tree (including keeping it well watered and away from direct heat sources!) will see it last well through the festive season. The Fraser Fir may be a newcomer for the UK, but with its wonderful scent and non-drop qualities, it is definitely a Christmas tree worth considering!