Get your Christmas tree from one of Estonia’s state forests! 01.12
The State Forest Management Centre (RMK) is inviting everyone to choose their Christmas tree this year from one of Estonia’s state forests. Locations and payment information can be found in the RMK app and on its website at www.rmk.ee/christmastree.RMK Chief Forester Andres Sepp says that people in Estonia love the country’s forests as much as they do the tradition of putting up a real Christmas tree in their homes, since it gives them a reason to get back to nature in late autumn/early winter to choose the perfect tree. After all, there can be no Christmas tree more lovely than one you and your family choose together!
As such, the RMK has been giving people the chance to buy their Christmas trees from state forests every year since 2008 in order to keep this tradition alive. The centre is also gifting trees to substitute homes throughout the country and adorning a variety of social institutions with Christmas firs.
The trees can only be taken from places in state forests where they stand little or no chance of becoming full-grown: from the edges of roads and ditches and from beneath power lines and old-growth forest. A map can be found on the RMK app and website which positions the user and shows them the closest points from which they can obtain a tree.
The power company Elektrilevi, which is a key partner to the RMK, reminds everyone that if you choose a fir tree that is growing beneath power lines, you must first make sure that it is safe to fell it – the top of the tree should be at least 3 metres below the wires. You should also be mindful near power lines generally, checking whether any wires have been brought down in storms. You can inform the relevant authorities of trees that have fallen onto power lines or of damage to wires by calling 112 or 1343.
Please note that fir trees cannot be felled in young-growth forests or protected areas. You will recognise young-growth trees by the fact that they are well-tended and generally all of the same height, while protected areas are demarcated and marked on state forest maps in brown and indicated by signs (for the most part) in nature.
You should pay for the tree you plan to fell via a mobile or bank payment before you fell it. Trees up to 1 metre tall cost 3 euros; trees 1-2 metres tall cost 8 euros; and trees 2-3 metres tall cost 13 euros. Taller fir trees can also be purchased, the prices of which are set out on the RMK website. You must have the SMS or payment order confirming your payment with you when you are in the forest – it may be checked by employees of either the RMK or the Environmental Inspectorate.
If you are unable to go to the forest, you can visit the RMK’s bright and cheery Christmas forest on Tallinn’s Song Festival Grounds, where you will find 11 stages with trees of different ages from the centre’s nursery and state forests. The information panels here are dotted with pearls of wisdom about Estonia’s forests and what makes them valuable, and you can answer questions to be entered in a weekly prize draw. The Christmas forest forms part of the festive park at the Song Festival Grounds, which will be open until 10 January.
For more information please contact:
Chief Forester, RMK
+372 50 55 932
Communications Manager, Elektrilevi
+372 5306 2786
Head of Communications Department, RMK
+372 5666 5896