Best/worst Xmas tree you can remember.

Or in between. Sometime in the mid '60s my mother brought home an aluminum tree. Looked like strips of aluminum foil but as I remember felt like razors. Not many ornaments on it. No lights. On the floor was a color wheel that squeaked as it went around, casting weak red/blue/yellow/green reflections. That was it’s one and only appearance. The next year we went back to “normal.” (Probably something flocked with artificial snow.)

Any particular Christmas tree that stands out in your memory?

Worst/ugliest was this artificial we had when I was a baby until I was a teen. It was second hand to start with and flocked within an inch of its life. And it never looked right with all the more antique ornaments we had from my Gramma. But ugly as sin and more I still sometimes miss it.

A bunch of my frat buddies went out at night to cut some ornamental trees from a mall. They brought them back and distributed them throughout the house.

They had been coated with deer urine.

The worst Christmas tree we had was one we cut down from a tree farm in the foothills. Someone must have been burning brush with poison oak in it shortly beforehand. After getting it set up and making decorative wreaths with the trimmings I broke out in the worst case of poison oak I’ve ever had. Ended up in the ER and later on steroids to deal with the inflammation. My hands were so bad I could hardly do anything.

My first husband and I cut down our tree one year, a lot harder than it sounds. Luckily we chose one that looked almost too small out in the field because when we got it home it nearly brushed the ceiling.
It didn’t have poison oak or deer urine on it though. Just lots of sap.

My aunt and uncle had one of those. They were the “thing” at the time – all sleek and modern, with no wires connecting bulbs, just glints of colored light from the color wheel reflecting off the tree. The color wheel at my relatives’ house didn’t squeak, though. And they had a model railroad set up at the base, going around the tree, that added a nice touch*

I can’t cite a single example for Best Christmas Tree. When I lived in Salt Lake City, I used to go to the Festival of Trees. People would cover Christmas Trees with handmade, generally themed ornaments, which would be gathered in the Salt Palace at the beginning of December and put on display. Then they were auctioned off to local businesses to put on display, the proceeds going to charity. It was one of the many unbelievably wholesome and family-oriented LDS-driven activities in SLC, which I cannot fault. In some cases the people involved made the trees themselves from scratch.

I saw some really impressive and labor-intensive trees at these events. I’ve since seen that other places have Festivals of Trees, but I’ve never gone to any since I left SLC.

http://www.examiner.com/article/the-2012-festival-of-trees-salt-lake-city-utah

*There’s a tree like this in one of the flashback sequences at Dr. Manhattan’s apartment. I like the image of the then-nearly-naked Dr. M cursing as he sets up an aluminum tree. Except that he wouldn’t have to – he could do it all with his mind. Come to think of it, he could create it all with his mind.

Aluminum Christmas trees! I can just barely remember seeing a few of those when I was a little kid. An older couple that lived on our street had one that they used every Christmas until about 1985. They had the little round 4-color spotlight thing, too. (It didn’t work very well.)

Worst Christmas tree I’ve heard of: the grandma of a friend of mine (thrifty older lady) decided to decorate a 6 foot stepladder as a Christmas tree. Wrapped it with lights, put a star on top, put the gifts on the stairs of the ladders.

Best one: my Mom spent several years collecting and making a hundred or more miniature ornaments (nothing bigger than a half-inch or so), tiny strings of miniature lights, a miniature model train set, a hand-sewn mini tree skirt, the whole nine yards. The whole thing was about a foot tall. It was the cutest thing, though it’s been a few years since she’s gone to the bother of setting it up.

I did this when my daughter was very young so she could have a Christmas tree in her bedroom. Mine was not as elaborate - only about 20 ornaments, one string of lights, no train, and I used a linen holiday napkin for a tree skirt. It was so much fun to put together, and she loved it. :slight_smile:

Deer urine. Sure. I take it that’s their story and they’re sticking to it…?

So many questions:

What was coated with deer urine? The frat brothers or the ornamental trees? I’m guessing the trees.

What possible benefit would coating ornamental trees in deer urine provide?

I think so that the people stealing them have a bad experience and don’t enjoy them.

When I was little we had some nice evergreens in the front yard, and my dad was always worried someone would chop them down one night for their own Christmas tree. He relaxed once they got big enough that no one would try.

I have an Ikebana vase something like this one, but made of jade. Inside the vase is a floral frog; a pincushion type thing to hold flowers in place.

Anyway, I like to find a sad/weird looking evergreen branch and use that, ironically, as my xmas tree. They are both my best and worst trees, simultaneously!

An old neighbor of mine had a huge evergreen stolen from the front of his lot one year. The following year he went along and topped them all. It looked like crap, but nobody ever stole another.

Last year, I bought an artificial Charlie Brown Christmas Tree. Still my favorite.

I remember as a kid (first or second grade) our live cut tree disappearing one day, to be replaced by my aunt’s aluminum tree. I cried for three days because it was so ugly. What I didn’t understand was that I had just been diagnosed with several allergies, including pine trees and dog dander. I didn’t take it as hard when our poodle was replace by a Boxer, for the similar reasons.

The worst was probably when I was a kid. My brother always brought us a freshly cut tree every year, but for some reason he didn’t show up. We waited until less than a week before the day, then went to a tree lot, which was depleted of all but the saddest looking specimens. We took one home and set it up; honestly, it looked like a palm tree. Most of the middle branches were missing, the ones on the bottom were raggedy, and there was a top cluster. I decorated it anyway, but it was a sad, sad tree. I would go into my bedroom and then walk back out, hoping that the lights and ornaments would magically make it look nice. No dice.

Two days later, my brother shows up with a tree. “Oh, you already have one.” No problem; I skinned that sucker in record time and chucked it into the back yard.

The best would be the year there was a huge snowfall after I decorated the spruce in our front yard. The snow dumped about eight inches on top of the lights and there was this ethereal glow as a result. People would stop and take pictures.

Oh OP, we had the same hideous aluminum foil monstrosity in my youth, too. After two years of suffering through it, my dad consigned it to the basement.

I think my best tree was also my worst tree. The first year my son was old enough to hang ornaments on the tree, he insisted on doing the whole thing himself, literally screaming his head off if anyone else tried to touch it. Because a 3-year old isn’t very tall, we had masses of tangled lights and ornaments on the lower 1/3 of the tree. The rest of the tree was naked. We took pictures of the results and tortured him with them for years afterward.

Theft deterrent. If you buy a tree from the dealer, they wash it off before handing it over.

Deer urine is something you can buy in Cabela’s or Bass Pro. Hunters use it to cover their own scent.

Our Christmas trees have always been very mundane and unmemorable, but I still remember this one Christmas tree, when I was 7 or 8, and we lived in Flint, MI. This was in the mid 70’s, when Flint (and my nice, middle-class neighborhood) was in the process of going from decent to crime-ridden and bad.

One of my neighborhood friends took me to another house in our neighborhood, where a little old lady lived, to help her put together her Christmas tree. It was a little silver aluminum tree, and we tried and tried to put it together, sticking the branches individually into these tiny holes in the trunk. We couldn’t get it together, so, fail. This old lady was so poor, I remember, she talked about how she couldn’t afford food for herself and stuff. I went home and told my mom about her and begged her to help that old lady with some money or food or something, but she wouldn’t. That made me really sad.

A couple of weeks later, I went back to the old lady’s house by myself to visit her, but she wouldn’t open the door because she didn’t know who it was, and I couldn’t make her remember me.

Flocking a tree is the devil’s work and anyone who says different is one of his minions.

That is all.

Many years ago a friend had a tree that at first looked odd, but by the time we left I wanted one just like it. The branches were almost bare and widely spaced, it barely reached the top of the front window and was almost twice as wide. All she had on it were strings of small white lights, no ornaments. I don’t know what kind of tree it was but it kind of looked like a large naked bonsai. It was stunning.