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Let Trees Ignite Your Spirit Not Your House

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RALEIGH — Ho, Ho, Hot. It hardly seems like the time to spend $50 on a Christmas Tree when its 80 degrees outside. That's exactly the problem for tree sellers.

When it comes to Christmas trees, we have all heard the advice. Check the needles to make sure they are not dried out and shake the tree to make sure the needles are not falling off. This year, that advice may be more helpful than ever.

It's the time of year when people are in search of the perfect tree. But with nearly 80 degree temperatures, you have to be careful your holiday season doesn't go up in smoke.

"Some of those trees can burn very quickly. In less than a minute some trees will be completely consumed, nothing left but the limbs," said Raleigh Fire Department Chief Earl Fowler.

Christmas trees and warm weather do not mix. Trees drying out from heat is a big problem this season. Scott Finley says he's come up with the perfect solution.

"Try to get it as fresh as possible with the roots still in the ground," said Finley.

Not bad advice considering the Christmas tree season is lasting longer and longer.

"Approximately 2 weeks before Christmas and almost 2 weeks after," said Finley.

But experts say two weeks is the maximum time to keep trees safely in your home. So, the fresher the tree, the better your odds of not sparking a fire. The best cut is a fresh cut when it comes to trees.

"If it's been out of water for some time, it will seal the bottom of that tree, so it makes it difficult for the tree to take water," said Frank Barick of Back Acres Tree Farm.

Also, make sure your tree is free of any dry needles, so the only thing lighting up in your home will be the decorations on your tree.

It's also a good idea not to place a tree near heat sources like fireplaces and make sure electrical wires used for the lights are in good working condition.

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Ericka Lewis, Reporter
Rick Armstrong, Photographer
John Clark, Web Editor

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