Saying a flocked tree is just a white tree barely scratches the surface. Although flocked trees are truly white, their essence goes beyond color. Flocking a tree involves the application of faux snow to the tree branches to make the tree look like a pine tree in the mountains during a snowstorm. So, going by this, a flocked Christmas tree is a tree covered in flocking material, so it looks like it is covered in snow. In many cases, the flocking material is made up of water, cotton fibers/cellulose fibers, spray adhesive (e.g., corn starch), and fire retardant.
Flocked vs. Frosted Christmas Tree
Flocked and frosted Christmas trees share one primary similarity – both of them have a faux snow effect. However, they are not quite the same. A flocked Christmas tree comes covered in a thick layer of artificial snow. The snow aims to mimic what you’ll find outdoors after a heavy snowfall.
A frosted Christmas tree comes swathed in a thinner layer of artificial snow. This makes it look like it has just received freshly fallen snow.
Owing to its thick snow layers, a flocked Christmas tree may appear slightly weighed down. Contrarily, a frosty tree will not be weighed down; it’ll maintain its original form. However, its tips will look snowy thanks to the snow dusting all over.
Lifespan of an Artificial Flocked Christmas Tree
A flocked artificial Christmas tree typically lasts many years. With proper handling, it can even last longer than expected.
In many cases, flocked artificial trees come with a warranty of 10 years. So, you can expect them to last at least ten years. But they could even last up to 15 years if handled and stored properly.
Longevity is one thing the artificial ones have over real ones. That aside, if your stored artificial flocked tree loses some flocking, you can always flock them again.
Lifespan of a Real Flocked Christmas Tree
Unlike a pre-lit tree, when you flock to a real tree, it only lasts around 2 to 4 weeks. However, with proper care, you might be able to extend its lifespan to an extent.
Storing a Flocked Christmas Tree
- Remove the decorations on the tree.
- Plan to store the tree before the off-season. This way, you’ll keep the tree from accumulating debris and dust.
- Brush the tree branches to remove any debris on them. You could use a feather duster or clean microfiber cloth for this.
- Cover the tips of the branches with gift tissue paper.
- Cover the tree. For this, you may use a tree bag. A tree bag will keep the tree compact, making it easier to store. It will also protect the tree from water damage. You may also cover the tree in plastic wrap.
- Ensure you store the tree vertically because if you store it horizontally, more of the flocking would be lost.
- Store the tree in a cool, dry place.
How to Care for Flocked Real Christmas Trees
- Keep the tree away from heat and in a cool, dry spot.
- Avoid using incandescent lights on the tree as they emit a lot of heat. LED lights are preferable since they do not emit heat.
- Keep kids and pets away from the flocked tree for their own safety. The material can be toxic if ingested.
You may water your real flocked Christmas tree. While they may be flocked, real flocked Christmas trees are still real. As such, they may still need to be cared for like real trees.
Then again, they typically do not need as much water as an unflocked tree. The flocking typically locks in some moisture. So, the tree can make do with infrequent watering.
How to Remove Flocking On Your Christmas Tree
For any reason, if you decide to remove the flocking on your tree, follow these steps:
1. Remove all the holiday decorating items on the tree.
2. Take the tree out to an open space.
3. Lay a wide piece of trap or drop cloth beneath the tree to catch the flocking as they fall.
4. Shake the tree vigorously to remove as much flocking as you can.
5. Then, use a vacuum to remove the remaining flocking. You may brush the branches before vacuuming. Doing this will dislodge the flocking, allowing for easier removal.
6. If the tree still has residual material, you can clean it with a clean, damp cloth. You may dampen the cloth with water or acetone – acetone is faster. If you use acetone, use a gas mask and ensure you mop the acetone off with a water-dampened cloth.
Are Flocked Trees Messy?
When tree flocking is done correctly, there will be little or no mess. This is especially true if the flocking process was done by a professional. Typically, when flocking is done professionally, the flock material is sealed. This way, bits from the Christmas tree are less likely to drop off.
If you flock to your Christmas tree by yourself, you may end up with a fair amount of mess during the flocking process.
Doing the flocking in an open area makes cleaning up easier. Also, you could cover the floor on which you’re flocking with a large tarp or something similar. This will also ease the clean-up process.
Is a Frosted or Flocked Tree Recyclable?
A flocked or frosted tree is typically not recyclable.
Are Pets Safe Around Flocked Christmas Trees?
If you have pets and kids around, you must keep them away from the tree since flocking can harm them. Flocking can be mildly toxic to cats and dogs if consumed. Better to use a different kind of tree.
What Happens If a Flocked Tree Gets Wet?
When a flocked tree gets wet, the flocking itself may remain unaffected by moisture, but the tree might get damaged.
Are Flocked Trees More Expensive?
For obvious reasons, flocked Christmas trees are typically more expensive than unflocked ones. The cost of the flocking and the application process are two possible reasons for the price difference.
Can a Flocked Christmas Tree Go Outside?
A flocked Christmas tree is best left indoors. Taking it outside exposes it to the elements, especially moisture and wind. These could wash the flocking off or even damage the tree.