NEW YORK (PIX11) — With just a few weeks to go, holiday shoppers looking for the perfect real Christmas tree should know: the fresher the better.

Everyone has their own traditions about when to go tree shopping, but it’s important to look for a tree that was recently cut and has soft, flexible branches, according to the manager at the Brooklyn Tree Farm.

“It’s better to buy the tree as soon as possible so you can get into the water right away. The sooner you get it into the water, the longer it will last,” said the manager, Steve, who declined to give his last name.

Most trees typically last four to six weeks, so the ones purchased around Thanksgiving should be good until the New Year. But some trees, like Fraser firs and Noble firs, have a bit more longevity, according to the manager at Harlem Christmas Trees.

Fraser firs are top quality and tend to retain their needles the longest, and they have that traditional Christmas tree look, Steve said.

After knowing when to buy, customers must decide on price, height, and look. The trees can be as small as 3 feet or high as 11 feet. An average 6-foot tree costs about $130, while taller trees can go for $500 to $1,000, experts said.

“For most people, bigger is better,” Steve said.

Once you’ve picked the perfect tree and gotten it home, experts recommend setting it up outside before bringing it into the house. Once inside, keep the tree away from radiators to keep it from drying out.

“Put it on the stand and make sure it’s straight to avoid a tipping situation,” Steve said. “Shake it out to get the dead needles out on the sidewalk before bringing it inside.”