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Stunning Artificial Coconut Palm Trees on a Cruise Ship

Real vs. Artificial Trees and Water Conservation

Stunning Artificial Coconut Palm Trees on a Cruise Ship

Artificial trees and water conservation efforts aren’t discussed often, but there’s a definite eco-friendly advantage to going faux in many scenarios. In our prior article, we discussed real vs. artificial trees in city areas, and how it’s often more eco-friendly to use faux trees in urban environments. Now we’re looking at the pros and cons regarding real or artificial trees and water conservation efforts.

 

Living trees need water, of course, but sometimes their watering requires more resources than can be spared. This is also an issue with planting trees for decorative appeal. Businesses and municipalities love to design with trees, but their high water consumption can sometimes be worse for the environment than leaving the areas empty.

 

That’s where TreeScapes and PlantWorks come in! We create durable, life-size (and larger than life) artificial trees. We offer replica trees, fully fabricated trees, and preserved trees. None of these require the maintenance or care that living trees do. They don’t need water, so they’re ideal for areas where water conservation is a concern. They also work perfectly in extreme climate areas that simply can’t sustain living trees.

 

We have trees in casinos and hotels all across Las Vegas for this exact reason. They provide much-needed shade, and make a memorable statement, but they don’t use valuable resources. They also don’t require any potentially harmful pesticides or fertilizers. You can also find our trees on cruise ships, which have to closely regulate how much fresh water is brought on board, and how it used.

 

There are many circumstances, of course, where it is better for water conservation to plant and grow living trees. This is because trees can store water, and their roots help to regulate water distribution in surrounding areas. Sometimes, by watering one tree, you’re effectively watering all of the surrounding plants and flowers. Supporting local tree and plant growth is an important step that we all should take towards combatting climate change.

 

Other real trees and plants, like different varieties of cacti, require very little water. Most states have published guides on low water trees, drought tolerant trees, and drought resistant trees. Those are generally a water-safe option for anyone looking to decorate or add some shade. The Arbor Day Foundation website is a good resource; their article “10 Drought-Tolerant Trees That Will Throw Shade” has a list of options to start.

 

Trees are, of course, great for providing shade. On a micro level, the cooling effects can result in less water consumption by animals and humans, which offers a small environmental benefit. But this is true of both real and artificial trees, so it’s not a huge point in favor of either one. There is a common scenario where artificial trees may use more water, though: misters. Theme parks, personal residences, and cruise lines often utilize faux trees that have built-in concealed misters. The cooling mist and artificial foliage is an ideal way to beat the summer heat, but you should be mindful of overall water consumption when using them.

 

TreeScapes & PlantWorks are commited to helping the environment, one tree at a time. That’s why we will donate to have at least one tree planted for every fabricated, replica, or preserved tree we sell!

 

We’ve partnered with the charitable organization One Tree Planted to do our part for the planet. Visit their website to see how you can help with their reforestation efforts too.

Real vs. Artificial Trees in the City

When are artificial trees better than natural trees? The answer might surprise you! There’s no denying that living trees are an important resource in the fight against climate change.

 

New research, though, has found situations where fabricated trees and plants are better options than real live trees and plants.

 

Trees offer an incredible array of benefits, including shade, wildlife habitats, water regulation, air cooling, and visual appeal. Their most crucial feature may be their ability to absorb and store carbon dioxide emissions.

 

These emissions are driving global heating, which is a huge problem for all living things. That’s why we always have to consider the environment when debating the pros and cons of real trees versus fake trees.

 

Real vs. Artificial Trees in Urban Areas

 

Many cities have started tree planting initiatives to add more living greenery in urban areas. Unfortunately, recent studies indicate that these urban trees aren’t resulting in net gains for the environment.

 

“Street trees take many years to pay their way on carbon costs. Emissions associated with nursery production, planting, irrigation, pruning, removal and disposal are high. Street trees must survive for between 26 and 33 years to attain carbon neutrality.”

 

Urban Trees Grow Fast and Die Young – The Guardian

 

Urban environments are great for nurturing the quick growth of young trees. They usually offer more light, carbon dioxide, and longer growing seasons than rural environments. What the ecosystem really needs, though, are older, mature trees.

 

As the street trees grow, they encounter size-related risks such as limited root space, excessive pruning, and removal due to hazard risk and development.

 

“Through rapid growth rates, street trees have the ability to sequester carbon and potentially provide other ecosystem services, such as evaporative cooling, more efficiently than rural trees,” the researchers write.

 

Currently, these benefits are not fully realized due to the high mortality suffered by street trees.”

 

The study indicates that urban trees are rarely able to sustain life for the minimum 26 years needed to offset their carbon footprints. The ideal solution would be planting trees that are already older and sturdier, or adjusting environments to create safer living conditions.

 

This isn’t always an option, though. That’s particularly true for cities that are counting on trees as affordable ways to improve the health and property values of their surroundings.

 

One solution? Artificial trees!

 

They offer the same biophilic appeal, design/decor functions, and shade. They’re much more durable than living trees, though, and they don’t require any water. Planting live trees in rural and deforested areas and using artificial exterior trees in urban areas is a great way to be eco-friendly.

 

TreeScapes & PlantWorks are commited to helping the environment, one tree at a time. That’s why we will donate to have at least one tree planted for every fabricated, replica, or preserved tree we sell!

 

We’ve partnered with the charitable organization One Tree Planted to do our part for the planet. Visit their website to see how you can help with their reforestation efforts too.

Can Fake Outdoor Trees Help Save Honey Bees?

A Facebook fan recently suggested that our fake outdoor trees could help the declining honey bee population. He commented on an article about how man-made honey bee hives are based on an old design, and they’re not the best environment for bees to thrive:

 

 “Despite the importance of nests to honey bees, the hives we build them bear little resemblance and have few of the properties of the natural tree nests European honey bees evolved with. In the 21st century, we’re still using hives designed in the 1930s and 1940s, based on ideas from the 1850s. Natural nests were only scientifically surveyed as recently as 1974 and research into their physical properties only began in 2012.”

 

To Save Honey Bees We Need to Design Them New Hives

 

John W. on Facebook said:

 

…We have been creating artificial trees for decades…. They could easily be modified to suit the design parameters that are described in this article. A company like International TreeScapes, LLC are world wide leaders and could do this as a student design project….

 

After that comment, we had to look into the matter further. We admit it never occurred to us that fake outdoor trees could help the bees! It may be a real possibility, though. It’s definitely a worthwhile endeavor:

 

“Managed honey bees are the most valuable pollinators in terms of agricultural economics. These hyper-efficient insects can provide pollination to virtually any crop.

 

Almonds, for example, are almost entirely dependent upon honey bee pollination. Without honey bees, the harvest of blueberries, squash, watermelon, and other fruits would be greatly reduced, driving up prices and disrupting the marketplace.”

 – The Value Of Pollinators To The Ecosystem And Our Economy

 

Man-made hives lack properties that honey bees prefer in their natural environments. The artificial hives are shorter and wider than those in nature, and they have large entrances that allow beekeepers to reach the bees and honey. 

 

Current methods of beekeeping are helping to spread a devastating parasite known as Varroa Destructor. Honey bees need high humidity environments, but the parasite prefers the low humidity environments found in man-made hives.

 

Honey bees prefer tree hollows that offer tall, narrow space, and a small entrance near the bottom. This helps to keep the hot air inside the hive, giving them the humidity that they need.

 

The bees then “strip off outer layers of bark to smooth the walls, then seal and coat them with propolis or ‘bee glue’ made from tree and plant resins in preparation for building wax honeycombs.” – Types of Natural Beehives

 

TreeScapes can easily design and create fake outdoor trees that have the dimensions and features that appeal to honeybees. We already create specialty products, like treehouses and cat trees for pets, so why not bee trees? The challenging part would be making these spaces accessible to beekeepers.

 

We currently lead the industry in the use of faux trees, plants, and hedges to hide electrical equipment, conceal structural elements, and provide discrete storage. These designs could be modified to meet the beekeeper’s needs.

 

Another option is to create these trees solely for the purpose of rewilding honey bees. The main purpose would be to increase natural honey bee populations. Beekeepers could then harvest the honey once the colony moves on or dies naturally.

 

California apiculturist Michael Thiele is doing just that:

 

“Thiele’s method consists of hollowing out logs and strapping them high on tree trunks to mimic bees’ hives before they were domesticated. He also sometimes suspends them from barn rafters or perches them high on wooden tables for a similar effect.”

‘Rewilding:’ One California Man’s Mission to Save Honey Bees

 

We’re still considering the best ways to accomplish this, and we welcome your feedback! What design would you use for fake outdoor trees to help save the honey bees?  

Contact TreeScapes:
artificial foliage - carnival cruise ship

Artificial Foliage to Beat Summer Heat

Beat the Summer Heat Using Artificial Foliage

Artificial Foliage Palm Tree with mister water spray
Palm Tree Misters by International TreeScapes

Our artificial foliage for exterior trees & plants is made with the heat in mind. We have locations in San Diego, Las Vegas, and Miami, so we’re VERY familiar with summer weather – sometimes all year round! Luckily we have some incredible ways to add shade, privacy, and even smart tech to your backyard or outdoor space. 

 

Artificial Foliage Uses

    • Privacy: Hedges, green walls, and dense foliage trees can block out the sun – and nosy onlookers. Keep your space your own personal, private paradise! We can also conceal privacy cameras and motion sensor lights within trunks or branches. 
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    • Cooling: We have many options to create shady spots in your yard, but you can always expand on these exterior trees & plants by adding concealed misters.
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    • Tech Integration: You have your ideal refuge from the sun – so why not make it fun? Integrate some concealed speakers or screens to add surprising functions that no one will expect!
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    • Speaking of Fun…we can also create custom made treehouses and play areas. Little ones will delight in having their own space, and you’ll love the hours of safe, fun entertainment it provides. We can even assist with custom cat trees for your feline friends!
Left: A fabricated palm tree with hidden misters gives homeowners cooling relief from the dry heat.

Artificial Foliage in Real Life

Artificial foliage palm trees Carnival Cruise lines
artificial foliage - carnival cruise ship

Artificial Foliage Options

    • UltraLeaf-X foliage is Ultraviolet “UV” Inhibited
    • UltraLeaf-X/IFR foliage is Ultraviolet “UV” Inhibited and Inherently Fire Retardant (IFR)
    • Exterior palms’ trunks are good for 15 years or longer and are built with IFR materials
    • “Giant” tree fronds are available in both “split” and “standard” leaf

 

These creations withstand harsh weather conditions without loss of shape, fullness, or color. And when we say “harsh”, we mean it!

 

Our UltraLeaf-X foliage stands the test of time against extreme temperature, sunlight, humidity, wind, rain, snow, and ice. This prevents our trees and plants from becoming discolored and tattered. We offer the industry’s longest lasting, highest-quality exterior creations.

 

Our products are also Inherently Fire Retardant (IFR). You don’t need to worry about fire hazards, even on the hottest, driest days. You can have peace of mind knowing that you’re conserving water and helping to keep your home safe.

 

As for watering, pruning, fertilizing, and dealing with pests? Not a problem! You can skip all of that and just enjoy your beautiful, realistic looking trees, plants, and flowers. This makes artificial foliage ideal for dry climates where water conservation is a must.

 

Seniors, allergy sufferers, and “set it and forget it” types will all love how hands-off and easy it is to maintain gorgeous foliage in any weather. It doesn’t matter where you live, or what season it is – our artificial foliage makes it easy to enjoy your perfect backyard all year round.

Above: Our faux palm trees on Carnival cruise ships give guests a tropical island feel, even when they’re on the water. They also offer plenty of shady spots to cool down and enjoy the sea breeze.
Right: Our artificial Banyan tree provides shade and a scenic background for the Wegeforth Bowl amphitheater at the San Diego Zoo!
Artificial Foliage - Banyan Tree at San Diego Zoo
Banyan tree, seal, & zoo performers at Wegeforth Bowl, San Diego Zoo
Disclaimer
All third party trademarks (including logos and icons) referenced by International TreeScapes, LLC (“TreeScapes”) and/or International PlantWorks, LLC (“PlantWorks”) remain the property of their respective owners. Unless specifically identified as such, TreeScapes/PlantWorks’ use of third party trademarks does not indicate any relationship, sponsorship, or endorsement between TreeScapes/PlantWorks and the owners of these trademarks. Any references by TreeScapes/PlantWorks to third party trademarks is to identify the corresponding third party goods and/or services and shall be considered nominative fair use under the trademark law.