Do you have a special place to get your tree? Christmas trees are not hard to find but there are a few fun places to get your tree in the Zurich area. Zurich has three forests where you can buy locally grown trees and even has two days where you can cut down your own tree. We also like visiting a Christmas tree farm in the countryside, wandering through the large forest of trees searching for a perfect one, then cutting down a live one to take home. Here are some resources for all your Christmas tree needs.
When to get trees
Swiss and Europeans in general like to use live candles on their trees. So they tend to buy their trees closer to Christmas, ensuring a fresh tree that is less likely to explode when expose to a flame. So many tree lots don’t open until the second or third week of December and stay open until noon on Christmas Eve.
Some expats like me prefer to have our trees up all December long. There is only one place I know where you can get a tree as early as the last week of November: Forstgarten Albisgüetli in Zurich City. See below for details.
Zurich City Forest
In Zurich city, you can get trees from the Zurich city forests and on certain days, cut your own. Here are the 2016 dates from their website:
Forstgarten Albisgüetli, Uetlibergstrasse 355, 8045 Zürich
Trees already cut 21.Nov – 23.Dec, 8–17:00 (not Sundays), 24. Dec from 8–12:00
Cut it yourself: Sunday, 18. Dec from 11–16:00
Stadtgärtnerei, Sackzelg 25/27, 8047 Zürich
Trees already cut 16. – 23. Dec 2016 from 9–17:00 (Sunday from 9–17:00)
Werkhof Hönggerberg, Kappenbühlstrasse 149, 8049 Zürich
Trees already cut 20–23. Dec from 9–16.30
Cut it yourself at: Saturday, 17.Dec 2016 from 9–16:00
Many communities have a local tree farm, like Zollikon or Kilchberg Stockengut Farm, so you usually don’t have to go far and it’s nice to support local growers. There are lots of tree farms all over Switzerland. Not all of them advertise online, so just look for posters in your neighborhood and local community center. You can search online for Weihnachtsbäume or Christbaumverkauf.
We like Christbaumhof Horgenberg at Oberhofweg 27 8815 Horgenberg. They have a huge selection of living trees to choose from in several fields surrounding the farmhouse. You pick a tree, then get one of the workers to chainsaw it down for you and wrap it up.
In 2016, they start selling trees from Dec 10, open 9:00 to 17:00 daily, closed during lunchtime on weekdays. They also had hot punch and cookies, which the kids look forward to. Depending on the weather, it can be quite muddy, so have the kids wear rain pants and boots.
Know your tree
These tree types grow in Switzerland: Weisstanne, Fichte/Rottanne, and Waldföhren
These tree types are imported: Nordmanntanne, Blautanne, Douglasie. Some farms grow these varieties as well but they are less common and more expensive.
Home Improvement Stores
All the big home improvements stores and many grocery stores will sell Christmas trees starting around the second week of December. You will get a bigger selection at the superstores like Coop Bau & Hobby, Jumbo and Migros Do It + Garden. I noticed that Jumbo is advertising “Fair Trade” trees this year.
If you prefer an artificial tree (aka Künstliche Weihnachtsbaum), you can purchase these in Switzerland at Manor, Coop Bau & Hobby, Migros Do It + Garden , Jumbo, and online at www.kuenstlicher-weihnachtsbaum.ch
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