Douglas fir (or "Doug fir"): This species has soft, dark green needles and an intense, sweet fragrance that many associate with Christmas. Some trees are sheared into a pleasing conical shape, others are left in their natural state. Doug firs don't retain needles as well as other species, so it's important to keep them well watered.
Red fir (or "silver tip"): This has strong, widely spaced branches, making it an ideal tree for displaying ornaments. It has blue-green needles with silver tips and, like most firs, a wonderful fragrance. If properly cared for, a red fir will hold its needles very well.
White fir: This has a fresh, woodsy fragrance and lovely blue-green needles. Like the red fir, it has sturdy, widely spaced branches and good needle retention.
Scotch pine (or Scot's pine): This has sturdy branches, so it's a popular choice for people who like a bushy tree that can support heavy ornaments. It holds onto its needles well even if it's not regularly watered. Its dark green needles are prickly, so you should wear long sleeves and gloves when handling it or hanging ornaments.
Colorado blue spruce: This tree is prized for its unusual blue color and excellent natural shape. Its sturdy branches will support heavy ornaments, but you'll want to wear long sleeves and gloves when hanging ornaments on its prickly branches. It has excellent needle retention if kept away from heat and properly watered.
Sequoia: Many people like this native California redwood for its attractive shape and lovely blue-green foliage. The leaves are prickly, though, so it's a good idea to wear long sleeves and gloves when handling or decorating this tree.
Monterey pine This is a bushy tree with soft, bright green needles. It keeps well if properly watered.
Incense cedar: Though its branches may not be strong enough to support heavy ornaments, many customers like this foothill native for its wonderfully soft, brilliantly green leaves. Its woodsy fragrance will make you think of pencils and cedar chests.
Norway spruce: This European native has a lovely fragrance, beautiful shape, and shiny, dark green needles. It needs lots of water to retain its needles.
Noble fir: This has soft, bluish-green needles with silver tips. Its stiff horizontal branches are great for displaying heavy ornaments. It's got excellent needle retention.
Fraser fir This fragrant tree is popular in Canada. Its soft, shiny needles are bright green on top and silver underneath. It has excellent needle retention.
Nordmann fir : This has soft, shiny needles which are brilliant green on top and silver underneath. They have a beautiful conical shape. It has excellent needle retention.
Charlie Brown tree: This is the name given to any scraggly, misshapen tree. Some people prefer Charlie Brown trees for their unusual shapes and sparse branches--which are great for displaying ornaments. Others choose them out of kindness.