Why buy when you can rent? Particularly when buying leads to a mess and a hassle, followed by death.
This is the thinking behind Scott Martin’s Christmas tree rental service, a Living Christmas. A landscape architect based in L.A., Martin was disturbed by the sight of tree carcasses littering the sidewalks after Christmas, and decided to infuse a little environmentalism into the holiday.
Martin delivers potted trees for his customers to decorate and enjoy for up to three weeks. After the holiday, he picks up the evergreen from its vacation and returns it to a nursery. In many cases, customers request to have the same tree year after year, so they can watch it grow.
“We love this,” one mother said of tree renting. “It stays fresh, the cleanup is minimal because it doesn’t drop anything, and it goes away and comes back next year. It’s kind of like having a little pet.”
Martin also drives a biodiesel truck, hires adults with disabilities to care for the trees, and picks up Goodwill donations along his route.
Hopefully, the success of a Living Christmas will lead to similar services in other areas. According to Martin, “California is more attached to the green movement, so they are more willing to try this service here.” What do you say, New York? Sounds like a challenge to me….
Photo: New York Times