# Treegonometry solves Christmas decoration dilemma

##### December 6, 2012

Mathematics has provided an answer for those striving for the perfect Christmas tree, Britain's University of Sheffield says.

The university's Maths Society was set the challenge of decorating a tree so that greenery and glitz are in harmonious proportion, resolving the problem of a tree that is either too barren or gaudy.

Here's their formula:

- Number of baubles: Take the square root of 17, divide it by 20 and multiply it by the height of tree (in centimetres).

- Length of tinsel: 13 multiplied by (3.1415) divided by 8, then multiplied by tree height.

- Length of tree lights: Pi multiplied by tree height

- Height (in centimetres) of star or fairy on top of tree: Tree height divided by 10.

"For example, a 180cm (six-feet) would need 37 baubles, around 919 cms of tinsel (30 feet) and 565 cms (19 feet) of lights, and an 18cm (seven-inch) star or angel is required to achieve the perfect look," the University says.

For those seeking an easier way of figuring this out, its website ( www.shef.ac.uk/news/nr/debenhams-christmas-tree-formula-1.227810 ) has a simple-to-use calculator.

Explore further: Live Christmas tree brings scent, mold

## Related Stories

#### Live Christmas tree brings scent, mold

November 14, 2007

Live Christmas trees may bring more than a fresh evergreen scent to U.S. homes during the holidays, they may bring allergy symptoms, a study showed.

#### 'Tree of Life' still stands after Derecho

July 23, 2012

(Phys.org) -- The "Tree of Life" at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., took on the June 29 derecho and suffered some damage, but remains strong. The derecho brought winds of more than 80 mph in Maryland, ...

#### Spitzer Unveils Infant Stars in the Christmas Tree Cluster

December 22, 2005

Astronomers using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope have given the world a spectacular new picture of a star-forming region called the "Christmas Tree Cluster," complete with first-ever views of a group of newborn stars still ...

#### Frog feet could solve a sticky problem

July 3, 2011

Tree frogs have specially adapted self-cleaning feet which could have practical applications for the medical industry.

#### Fringe trees are finding new homes in urban landscapes

May 4, 2012

It's a little tree with big personality - fringe tree, or Chionanthus virginicus.

#### Researchers discover a way to delay Christmas tree needle loss

December 6, 2010

Researchers at Universite Laval, in collaboration with Nova Scotia Agricultural College, have discovered what causes Christmas tree needles to drop off, and how to double the lifespan of Christmas trees in homes. The authors ...

## Recommended for you

#### Model helps explore how changing certainty in belief of one statement can lead to changings belief in truth of others

October 21, 2016

A small team of researchers with members from the U.S., the Netherlands, Russia and Italy has developed a new model that illuminates how changing the degree of certainty a person holds for a given belief can lead to changes ...

#### Meet Savannasaurus, Australia's newest titanosaur

October 21, 2016

The outback region around Winton in central Queensland is arguably Australia's ground zero for giant dinosaur fossils. Here, graziers occasionally stumble across petrified bones on their paddocks, amid the stubbly grass and ...

#### A weird combination of Deinotherium and Platybelodon- Elephantiformes without ivories

October 21, 2016

In the main Proboscidean taxon of Elephantiformes, a huge pair of developed top incisors (ivories) has become a distinctive feature of this taxon. The structure is usually made as a tool for individual foraging and a weapon ...

#### Major commuting differences found between rich and poor in Colombia

October 20, 2016

(Phys.org)—A small team of researchers from Universidad Nacional de Colombia and Universidad de Zaragoza in Spain has found that there are a number of differences between the commuting experiences for people living at different ...

#### Early fossil fish from China shows where our jaws came from

October 20, 2016

Where did our jaws come from? The question is more complicated than it seems, because not all jaws are the same. In a new article, published in Science, palaeontologists from China and Sweden trace our jaws back to the extinct ...

#### Ancient human history more complex than previously thought, researchers say

October 20, 2016

Relationships between the ancestors of modern humans and other archaic populations such as Neanderthals and Denisovans were likely more complex than previously thought, involving interbreeding within and outside Africa, according ...

##### avafeas
not rated yet Dec 06, 2012
This seems overly simplistic. The length of lights is pi * tree height but the surface area of the cone enclosing the tree is going to be pi * r * sqrt(r^2 h^2); without including the variable r (radius of tree branches at bottom) it's not going to be a good formula.
##### hughreid
3 / 5 (1) Dec 07, 2012
depends on whether I like a mathematics geek"s idea of the ideal tree - where is the picture !
##### alzmoma
3 / 5 (1) Dec 14, 2012
You think it seems overly simplistic? It seems kind of silly to make everyone divide the square root of 17 by 20 and then multiply by the tree height (for number of baubles). Wouldn't it just be easier to say multiply the tree height by 0.206? And for tinsel multiply tree height by 5.1 instead of making the world multiply pi by 13 and divide by 8. A constant is a constant is a constant. I mean really that's just making it more difficult for the sake of making it difficult.