In the modern world, decorated evergreens are the hallmark of the Christmas season. You can find Christmas trees everywhere from North America to Europe to Africa, decorated with ornaments, paper designs, and strings of popcorn or lights.
Traditionally, Christmas trees are live evergreens, usually fir or pine. However, particularly in wealthy countries or in countries that are short on evergreens, the artificial tree is popular as well.
The History of the Christmas Tree Tradition
Evergreens have been used to celebrate the winter holidays since ancient times. From Rome to Egypt to China, people would decorate their homes with garlands or evergreen boughs, in the belief that the branches would keep evil spirits at bay. The branches were commonly associated with eternal life, since they never faded and died like other bushes and trees.
Although evergreen boughs were used in various aspects of decoration and celebration, the practice of using an entire tree began in Germany in the 1500s. Although German immigrants brought this tradition with them to North America in the 1830s, it would be several decades before the Christmas tree really caught on. In the 1840s, British Queen Victoria married German Prince Albert, who brought some of his Germanic traditions with him to England. Not surprisingly, one of these traditions was the Christmas tree. As Queen Victoria was popular in England, everything she did was considered fashionable. So, once word spread that the Queen and her Prince had a decorated evergreen in their Christmas celebrations, the tradition caught on quickly. By the 1850s, the Christmas tree was gaining traction across England and the United States, and by the turn of the century, it was commonplace.
Depending on their cultural heritage and their socioeconomic status, people used a wide variety of objects to decorate their trees. Christmastime revelers could select from handmade, imported glass ornaments, or they could choose to make their own ornaments. In the German tradition, many still chose to decorate their trees with foods such as apples and nuts, and eventually popcorn strings became popular as well. Candles were used commonly until the advent of easily-accessible electricity, which made strings of electric lights more fashionable. In China and Japan, decorations were more typically made of complex and delicate paper designs.
Modern Takes on an Old Classic
Although real, live evergreens — with their pine needle scent, and also their tendency to catch fire — are traditional for Christmas, artificial trees have been used for decades as well. In the 19th century, artificial trees debuted in Germany, and then moved to the United States, where they gained popularity in the early and mid 1900s. By the 1930s, you could find in North America artificial trees made from brush bristles. Trees made from plastic and aluminum were produced starting in the 1950s, and increased in popularity into the 1960s.
And, as people stepped away from the live evergreens they had once used, they began to experiment with other aspects of the Christmas tree tradition. Now, stores stock artificial evergreens in every color — everpinks, everblues, and even everblacks. For some, the colored Christmas tree is the newest wave of wintertime fashion. And when you take a look at the best black Christmas trees out there, you can begin to picture the ways in which the Christmas tradition continues to change and evolve.
Vickerman 5.5’ Black Pencil Tree with 150 Orange G12 LED Lights
This black Christmas tree is tall and thin, more reminiscent of a fir tree than of a spruce tree. Although the proportions are all the same, this tree is available in four sizes: 5.5 feet, 6.5 feet, 7.5 feet, and 9 feet. The variety of sizes, coupled with the thinness of the tree itself, make it an ideal choice if you’re looking for a tree that fits exactly under your ceiling without needing to bend. If you’ve ever purchased the wrong size of tree, you know the disappointment that comes along with a tree that’s too small, or the logistic headache that comes along with a tree that’s too large.
This tree — which boasts 449 PVC branch tips — comes pre-strung with 150 LED lights, which have an orange tint to them. The LED lights come with a three-year warranty, while the tree itself comes with a 10-year warranty. In addition to the lights, the tree also comes with an understated and sturdy four-legged metal stand.
Overall, this tree makes it onto the list of the best black Christmas trees because of the wide variety of available sizes and the pre-strung lights. However, for those particular about the color of lights they use on their Christmas tree, these lights do have an orange tint. For those that mind, the pre-strung LED lights can be removed and replaced with the preferred lighting choice. And, the thin shape of this tree must be taken into account. While some may count this as a space-saving pro of the tree, those who admire the traditional shape of Christmas trees may find the slimness unappealing.
National Tree 6 Foot Black Tinsel Tree with Metal Stand
This pencil-shaped artificial Christmas tree is sleek and slim, appealing to those who value tradition with a bit of a fashionable flair. Although the most classic version of this tree measures in at six feet tall, there are also more miniature versions available at two feet or three feet tall. The six-foot version measures only 20 inches in diameter, making it extra slim for its height.
Even at six feet tall, this tinsel tree is still surprisingly lightweight — it weighs less than eight pounds — which is important for both setup and teardown. The tree boasts 520 branch tips, giving it a full appearance despite its slim silhouette. And, if you decide black isn’t the right color Christmas tree for you, this tree is also available in blue, champagne, pink, red, silver, turquoise, and white. No matter which color you choose, each tree comes with a matching (or at least coordinating) four-legged metal tree stand.
Although the tinsel on the tree may reflect light well, this tree doesn’t come with lights pre-strung. If you would like lights on your tree, you’ll have to purchase those separately.
This Christmas tree is ideal for those looking for a bit of shine on a reasonable budget. As with the previous tree, the pencil shape of this tree must be taken into account, although it will a pro for some and a con for others. In addition, this black Christmas tree is fairly delicate because of its tinsel construction, making it less suitable for homes with rambunctious pets or young children. However, the variety of colors is enough to satisfy any buyer, regardless of what color tree you’re looking for this Christmas.
4 ft Indiana Spruce Artificial Tree in Black with Clear Lights
The shape of this black Christmas tree is similar to one of the most common Christmas tree varieties, the spruce tree. Spruce trees — similarly to this artificial version — have much longer branches at the base of the tree than at the top, making them full and wide. This black Christmas tree, however, is shorter than most live trees, at four feet tall. Although a large living room or extra-high ceilings might dwarf the tree, it’s the perfect size for giving some Christmas cheer to medium-sized rooms or smaller apartments.
The 173 branch tips come with 150 pre-strung lights, which are the classic clear color. The lights, though evenly spread across the tree, still leave plenty of room for personalized decorations. The tree also comes with a small black stand at the base, and the “trunk” leading down to the base is wrapped in an artificial bough for color consistency.
This medium-sized black Christmas tree is a great find if you’re looking for a tree with a traditional shape that won’t overwhelm a small space. Because it is pre-strung with lights, purchasing this tree will also save you from needing to buy lights as well. However, this tree does only come in one size, which may make it a little too small or a little too large for your specific needs. In addition, the included stand with this tree is not the most attractive, and may need to be covered with a throw or other decorations in order not to distract from the tree itself.
5ft Black Christmas Tree Imperial 390 Tips Artificial Tree with Metal Stand
This tree stands at five feet tall, offering a medium height that can fill up a room without being too unwieldy to setup or teardown. This tree is shaped somewhere in between the pencil shapes and spruce-like shapes of other trees, making it a good choice for those who are still on the fence. Despite its medium size and 390 branch tips, this Christmas tree boasts a particularly low weight, clocking in at only four pounds.
The tree comes in only one size, which may not be large enough for high-ceilinged rooms. It also comes in only one color, a black with a hint of silver in the “needles.” The false trunk of the tree is wrapped in the same color as the branches, and leads down to an included metal base. The base is four-legged with a center post, giving it a utilitarian appearance that may need to be covered in order to keep the Christmas cheer going.
This tree makes it onto the list of the best black Christmas trees largely because of its medium size and shape. The tree is full and the shade of the needles is a pleasant black with a hint of a silver sheen in it. However, the tree does not come with pre-strung lights, which will needed to be purchased separately and added by the purchaser. The base of the tree, although included, is a bit flimsy and unattractive, so it may need to be reinforced and/or covered for both practical and aesthetic reasons. This tree still, however, offers an excellent choice for creating a personalized, fashionable Christmas tree, and the end product may be worth the extra work required in setting it up.
StillCool 2ft / 60cm Artificial Christmas Tree Christmas Party Home Decoration
This tiny black Christmas tree is anything but traditional. While it may not take the place of a larger tree in your home, this black Christmas tree — which stands at just under two feet tall — is the right size for putting in an entryway, on a table, or in your office at work. Or, if you’re living in a dorm room or another shared space, this tree is small enough to bring some Christmas tree without infringing on other people’s personal bubbles.
The artificial needles on this tree are made from PVC plastic, which does look artificial to the eye. It also comes with a three-legged black plastic stand, which may need to be both covered for appearance reasons and reinforced for stability reasons. Apart from reinforcement of the stand, this black Christmas tree is easy to assemble — simply slide it out of the packaging, put the legs of the stand in place, and then lower and fluff the branches.
The tree does not come with pre-strung lights, so lights will need to be purchased separately if desired. In addition to black, the tree is available in six more colors: red, green, white, gold, blue, and pink. Although the advertised height of two feet is already quite small for a Christmas tree, certain shipments may fall far below that height. Because of this, the tree is best for those who truly want a miniature tree for a very small space.
This small Christmas tree can pack a lot of punch for the holiday season, and the color is enough to make a fashion-forward statement. However, this truly is a miniature tree, and is best suited for brightening up tabletops, desks, and small corners. The included stand, simple assembly, and low price make it a hassle-free choice. The tree does not, however, come pre-strung with lights, so those will need to be purchased separately. And, the clearly artificial needles may bother some, while others may find them irrelevant in comparison to the variety of colors to choose from.
Kurt Adler 18” Black Mini Christmas Tree
This black Christmas tree is truly tiny. Measuring only 18 inches tall, including the base and “trunk,” this tree is ideal to place on a desk or as a centerpiece on a dining room table. The tree is shaped like a traditional tree, just in miniature, with lower branches much longer than the upper branches. If you’re looking to venture into non-traditionally colored trees, this small one is the perfect place to start. It’ll give a pop of color and alternative style without overwhelming a room.
The tree itself has 140 branch tips, a surprising number considering how small the tree is. It also comes with a small black base. The base, however, is round, and may not be the most stable in hectic environments. For this reason, it’s advisable to reinforce the base somehow, even if only with a festive blanket wrapped around the base for added stability. The tree does not come with pre-strung lights, so those must be purchased separately if desired.
In addition, because this tree is so small, it may be difficult to find appropriately sized lights, ornaments, or other decorations. If you would like the tree to look proportional to a full-sized tree, than even store-bought miniature ornaments may simply be too large. Because of this, previous buyers opted to make their own ornaments, or to get creative in their use of other decorations. As such, this tree offers a great opportunity for personalization.
If a tiny black Christmas tree is what you’re looking for, then this may be the one. The miniature size is ideal for a first foray into colored trees, or for a pop of eccentricity in your festive decorations. However, the tree will need appropriately sized decorations and lights, which may be difficult to find. As well, though a stand is included, it will likely need reinforcement to ensure that the tree does not get knocked over. Ideal size for decorating office spaces or tabletops.
When you’re looking for new ways to decorate your home for the winter season, black Christmas trees are a funky alternative to more traditional evergreens. When choosing the best black Christmas tree for your needs, the first thing to consider is the size of the space you are decorating. Black Christmas trees can be found in sizes ranging from 18 inches to nine feet tall, and everything in between. If possible, measure your space beforehand so that you are sure to get the perfect size of tree.
Once you know what size tree you are looking for, you must then consider what material you would like your tree to be made out of. The two most common options are tinsel — which has an almost glitter-like sheen — and PVC — a plastic product that is more durable but also more noticeably artificial. Among these different materials of trees, there are also options with and without pre-strung lights, depending on how much work you would like to put into personalizing your tree.
After you’ve considered all of these things, you should have a pretty clear picture of the type of tree you’d like to purchase. From there, it’s all about going with your gut and having fun decorating your new tree for the holiday season!