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Tree rentals provide eco-friendly alternative to holiday tradition

Tree rentals make Christmas eco-friendly
Tree rentals make Christmas tradition eco-friendly 01:38

It's the season for Christmas trees, which brings the age-old debate — artificial or real? But there's another option taking root in England.

At Primrose Vale Farm in Cheltenham, England, there's a Christmas tree that has waited all year to reunite with Dee Campling.

"It's got my name on it!" Campling said.

For the second year in a row, Campling, an interior designer, is renting the living, potted tree for around $60.

Christmas trees from Primrose Vale Farm in Cheltenham, England. CBS News

When asked why she was renting a Christmas tree, Campling said, "I hate seeing the used Christmas trees that are left on the side of the road … It seems that renting a tree is the most environmentally friendly way of celebrating Christmas."

Environmentalists say a chopped tree can leave a heavy carbon footprint unless it's recycled. And that plastic trees can be even worse unless they're reused over many years. It's one reason rental trees are a growing trend in the U.K. and the U.S.

Primrose Vale Farm manager Paul Keane says nearly all of his farm's 1,000 "firs and spruces for rent" were reserved long before the holidays.

"You're keeping a tree alive," Keane said when asked why the rentals were so popular.

After Christmas, the rental trees will come back to the farm. They'll be replanted in pots in the ground where they'll live to see another Christmas.

That's what Campling plans to do: deck her halls year after year with the same tree.

Interior designer Dee Campling plans to continue renting the same Christmas tree year after year as an eco-friendly alternative to the holiday tradition. CBS News
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