If you love the smell of a real Christmas tree over the festive season and aren’t afraid of the dropping needles come the end of December, here are some of the places across the district where you can pick out and buy your perfect tree (as well as where to purchase wreaths and floral decorations for your home, and information on when your old Christmas tree can be collected when it all comes to an end).
Top tip – pick a Nordmann tree as they don’t shed their needles!
Burcot Farm, in East Stratton, is open for Christmas tree sales from 20 November. You can book a time slot to walk around the farm and choose your perfect tree, shop for decorations and catch their famous polar bears and snowman. You can also order your tree online and get it delivered to your door.
Woodmann Trees, in Woodmancott, was established in 1984 after Mr and Mrs Dinesen purchased Manor Farm from Winchester College in the early 1970s, before spotting a market for growing Christmas trees in the UK. Today they sell over 75,000 Christmas trees each year to the UK wholesale market. Wholesale enquiries welcome!
Close to Hinton Ampner country estate, in Alresford, is Meon Valley Christmas Trees – you can also catch them at Hampshire Farmers’ Markets in Winchester on 28 November and 12 December. Meon Valley Christmas Trees is run by John Fairey (very apt considering what you pop on top of one!).
Venture a little further out to Wylds Farm in Liss and make your Christmas tree shopping into a fun-packed festive day for the family. You’ll find a bar stocked with ales, mulled wines and cocktails, a street food vendor and a shop selling gifts and decorations. Enjoy choirs and dancers performing at weekends plus kids can enjoy tractor and trailer rides and a 12 Days of Christmas treasure trail. Don’t forget to bring your letters to pop in the post box for Father Christmas . The farm is open for tree sales from 27 November.
Or browse the area’s garden centres for trees, natural decorations and more. Garsons, in Titchfield – which opened in 1871, during the Victorian era – is celebrating 150 years by transforming their centre in to an enchanted world of Victorian literature. Wander down lanes inspired by Charles Dickens’ stories and characters and explore the centre’s ‘forests’ to shop for real and artificial/pre-lit trees; wreaths and garlands; traditional, novelty and outdoor lights and decorations to hang. Plus, children can post their letters to Father Christmas in the special letterbox (or email a photo of it) – and include their name and home address to receive a special letter back. Fresh-cut Christmas trees available from 26 November. On 2 December Hillier Garden Centre in Winchester will be hosting a Festive Celebration Evening (with free entertainment, a light switch on and mulled wine), giving guests the chance to be the first to wander through its real Christmas tree forest. RSVP online and visit the centre to shop for trees, lights and decorations, and book a place for a wreath or table decoration workshop. Brambridge Park Garden Centre, Colden Common, will be stocking real trees and hosting a Santa’s Grotto and Breakfast with Santa event from 28 November to 24 December. Book now!
The Original Flower Stall – which you can’t miss on Winchester High Street – is offering free delivery on their Christmas trees (see online). Plus, visit owner Dave Langridge and his boys, after a trip to the cathedral’s Christmas Market to pick up seasonal flowers, wreaths and more.
If you’re looking for natural decorations for your home, Catkin & Pussywillow in Winchester and Four Marks makes a range of beautiful wreaths, garlands, table centre pieces and bouquets; or try Claudia & B – a Winchester-based family run floristry business set up during the pandemic.
If you’re exploring the district’s market towns, Wickham Flowers are making lush, vibrant wreaths to order; Alresford’s Wildbunch Florists (also at Cobbs Farm Shop, Winchester) can make you a wreath to order, or you can buy a wreath making kit if you’re experienced (or feeling brave). Pay a visit to family-run Hylands fruit and vegetable shop in Bishop’s Waltham for seasonal plants and flowers as well as delicious Christmas foods like mince pies and chutneys.
For something a little longer lasting, check out Consortium in the city centre which sells metal wreaths, mistletoe, bell and star garlands and festive themed felt garlands.
Finally, when the moment does sadly come to take down your real Christmas tree, households can take advantage of Winchester City Council’s waste collections service to dispose of their tree. Just remove it from its pot and strip it of all decorations and tinsel, before placing it out on a garden waste collection day (10 and 17 January). Large trees over five feet tall will need to be cut into smaller pieces to enable them to fit in the collection vehicle. For more information please visit here.