Dubai: There is good news for Christmas tree buyers this year. Prices of real trees in Dubai have dropped 25 to 40 per cent, according to sellers on the Hubaiba street of Satwa.
Shop sellers from this street, also fondly called the ‘plant street’ told Gulf News that import costs of the real Fraser fir from Canada, Nordmann fir from Denmark and Noble fir from the US and Canada have dropped with respect to shipping and purchase price. Hence, despite the massive demand for Christmas trees in Dubai, there is a respite in prices fortunately for buyers this year.
Gulshan Abdul Gafoor, sales manager of National Flower Shop in Satwa, said at his shop, prices of trees range from Dh200 all the way up to Dh7,200. The shop has imported 2,300 real trees from Denmark, Canada and the US.
“The Christmas trees started to arrive in our shop from November 20 onwards. People have been buying from us ever since,” said Gafoor.
He said they are now left with only 20 trees to sell. Gafoor is confident they will be sold in no time as the Russian Orthodox Christmas, which falls on January 7, is also around the corner.
The taller, the pricier
At the adjacent shop, Plant Street Flowers, price for a Nordmann fir with a height of 125 to 150cm is between Dh200 to Dh250. Price for the same fir tree with a height of 175cm to 2 meters is between Dh275 to Dh450.
Arun Prakash, a sales personnel, said rates for the Fraser fir are currently Dh800 to Dh900 for a seven to eight feet tree.
Gafoor said the Noble fir trees, however, are the most expensive. “It is of the highest quality and it comes from Canada.”
A Noble fir tree with a height of six to seven feet is priced Dh1,100. If it is of eight feet to nine feet height, it is priced Dh1,500, while a nine to 10 feet tall Noble fir tree is priced Dh1,800.
The tallest one, 5-meter tall and with a width of three to four metres, is priced Dh7,200 upwards. “The demand for such trees comes from hotels and malls,” said Gafoor.
Tips from a regular buyer
British expat living in Dubai, Suzanne Jackson, has been buying real pine trees for more than 13 years. “I always buy real trees. I have never looked at plastic tree options. We always recycle the tree after Christmas is over.”
She added: “I paid Dh800 for the tree this year. It was delivered to my house and they even helped set it up for me.”
Jackson said one of the things she does to keep the quality of the tree up is adding sugar or anything sweet to the bottom of the tree. “This is something that works really well to keep the tree fresh. Besides, I spray water on the tree every day to keep it fresh,” she said, adding that buyers should keep these trees away from direct sunlight.
Italian expat, Tatiana Antonelli, said her family owns a good quality plastic tree. “As someone who thinks ‘sustainable’, I believe this is a better option. The real fir trees are imported from outside which involves fuel and carbon emission. In contrast, a good quality plastic one lasts long.”
Antonelli said the Christmas tree in her house has been with the family for a long time. “I have three boys and they all have decorated this tree. I would suggest people to buy a tree and keep it with them for years. That way, less goes into the landfill.”
She added: “Not all fake trees are made of plastic. There are recycled options available. For example, I saw a tree in Spain made of empty bottles. I am all for less waste. So buy something long lasting and that remains with the family for decades.”
Nordmann fir tree (125cm- 150cm) — Dh200 to Dh250
Nordmann fir tree (175cm to 2m) — Dh275 to Dh450
Fraser fir tree (7ft to 8ft) — Dh800 to Dh900
Noble fir tree (6ft to 7ft) — Dh1,100
Noble fir tree (8ft to 9ft) — Dh1,500
Noble fir tree (9ft to 10ft) — Dh1,800
Noble fir tree (5m tall and 3m to 4m wide) — Dh7,200 upwards.