From the story: Environmental experts tout real trees, noting that it takes four to nine years to grow a real, six-foot tree. By choosing one, people are supporting tree farmers and the industry, they add. "One of the biggest misconceptions of the general public still today is that harvesting of Christmas trees is cutting down forests," says Peter Danley, a landscaping expert. "This is not the case." In its afterlife, a natural tree can be reused as mulch. The huge Rockefeller Center Christmas tree put up in New York City produces three tons of mulch annually, according to Rick Dungey, spokesman for the National Christmas Tree Association.
Well I'm glad I unknownly did my part to save the earth....
Note: The "tree" in the photo is made out of empty Mt. Dew cans(they are green) complete with a 2 liter topper. That's extreme recycling!
See for yourself!