Loggers cut down the main Russian New Year’s Tree in a forest in Naro-Fominsk Raion in Moscow Oblast on Thursday 19 December. It’s a spruce tree, over 110-years-old. Soon, workers will load it onto a flat-bed trailer and deliver it on Saturday in Moscow, where workers will put it on Cathedral Square in the Kremlin. Strict standards exist for the selection of the Kremlin New Year’s Tree… it must have a smooth trunk, a pyramidal shape, feathery branches, and be at least 30 metres (99 feet) in height. The quality of the trees’s timber is important, for it must be able to withstand temperature fluctuations, and it must last for three weeks without deterioration. Foresters reject any trees with moss or lichen on the trunk, or if they discover that the tree’s hollow. Usually, the trees come from the edge of the forest, as it’s easier to take them out and ship them to the city. For several weeks, a special commission examined the forests surrounding Moscow to select a proper tree. They choose two or three main candidates, for two are backups, just in case the primary tree has an accident for one reason or another during the display period. The decorations are rather simple… it has large, medium, and small ornament balls in the colours of the Russian flag (red, white, and blue).
19 December 2013