Frequently Asked questions
How do I know before I go to the forest, how tall a tree I would find there?
It is possible to pay for the tree by mobile payment. If this payment method suits you, you can pay for the spruce after you have found the tree you like. As a rule, everyone already knows where they would place the Christmas tree at home and has an idea how tall the tree should be. If you know the desired height, you can make an online payment for the tree before going to the forest.
Is it necessary to obtain a forest notification to bring a Christmas tree from the state forest?
According to the Forest Act, in forests owned by persons in public law people are allowed to pick berries, mushrooms and nuts and gather ornamental branches, herbs and ornamental plants and parts thereof without unduly harming the interests of the forest owner, without disturbing the game and protected animals during their reproduction period and other persons who are in the forest, without leaving permanent traces in the forest, and provided that the fire safety requirements and the requirements of the forest owner are adhered to. Therefore, it is not necessary to obtain a forest notification to cut one or two Christmas trees. A copy of a payment order certifying the payment or a text message certifying the mobile payment is enough.
If I cut the 2-metre top off a 5-metre tree, is it a 2-metre Christmas tree according to the price list?
Definitely not. This is considered an intentional damage of the interests of the forest owner and a violation of the law. If you find a taller tree than you need and you just cut off the top, you will need to pay for the whole tree and use the remaining part for other purposes.
Can I buy a Christmas tree that is taller than 3 metres?
Generally, people buy up to 3-metre spruces for their home, but this year it is also possible to pay for 4 and 5-metre trees, using our bank links and mobile payment. If you want to buy an even taller spruce, send an email to email@example.com and ask for an invoice. See the prices here.
How can I find a state forest?
You can find it according to signs placed in state forests. The best idea is to use this website or the RMK mobile app, or the public forest register at http://register.metsad.ee/avalik/, where it is possible to find a state forest in your region of interest and make sure it is not a nature reserve. When you see a sign of the state forest, it does not mean that the whole large forested area behind the sign is state forest only – there may be plots of private land, too. We recommend to carefully check the location of state forests.
How do I know where the nature reserve is located? Why am I not allowed to cut a tree in protected areas?
Protected areas are marked with signs. Ignorance of law is no excuse for disregard of obligation to comply with the law. In nature reserves and protected areas access may be restricted in certain periods, or there may be certain economic restrictions and certain activities may be prohibited. It is forbidden to cut Christmas trees in nature reserves. A good overview of the location of reserves is available on this website and in the forest register. Christmas trees can be cut in commercial forests only.
How do I know where I can cut trees and where not? Why am I not allowed to cut a tree from young growths?
Christmas trees can be cut in places where they stand no chance of growing to maturity, i.e. along the edges of roads and ditches, and under overhead power lines. It is prohibited to cut from young growths or plantations where trees have been planted and will hopefully become trees of the future. Unjustified damage to the interests of the forest owner is an offence and therefore punishable.
May I cut ornamental branches from living trees?
According to the Forest Act, in forests owned by persons in public law, people are allowed to pick berries, mushrooms and nuts and gather ornamental branches, herbs and ornamental plants and parts thereof without unduly harming the interests of the forest owner, without disturbing the game and protected animals during their reproduction period and other persons who are in the forest, without leaving permanent traces in the forest, and provided that the fire safety requirements and the requirements of the forest owner are adhered to. Therefore, you are allowed to cut branches for domestic use (to put in a vase or make a Christmas decoration), provided you do not damage the tree. It is recommended that you cut lower branches of older trees.
I could make a single payment and with this one payment order bring home ten trees. Who controls the situation and how?
This is a matter of trust; it is not business for RMK. We will leave the Christmas trees business to entrepreneurs, private forest owners and farmers. Our goal is to direct people to the right places and inform them where they are allowed to cut a tree and where not, and what kind of documents they need. RMK and national supervisory authorities (Police, Environmental Inspectorate) conduct random checks of the cutting of Christmas trees. To prove your cutting right, you have to have the payment order or text message certifying payment with you in the forest.
How many trees may I take?
We presume you take one spruce home with you. If you need three trees, you also have to pay for the three. Pursuant to the Forest Act, up to ten ornamental trees are not deemed to be timber, and a conveyance document is not required to transport them. However, if the quantity is bigger, the supervisory authority has the right to require a conveyance document and the transporter must be able to present it.
How to use the forest register to find a state forest?
To find a state forest and take into consideration the relevant nature conservation restrictions, you should use the public map application of the forest register at http://register.metsad.ee/avalik.
Open the map and double-click on the map in the region or county where you would like to go to find your Christmas tree. Zoom in on the map until you find the suitable region at the village level. The map shows village names and roads. When you have zoomed in to see the name and the borders of the village, click on the Layers Menu (top left). Select “eraldised RMK” (RMK stands) to display only state forests managed by RMK – these are marked in green lines on the map. Now select the layers of all restrictions (excl. hunting areas) – the state forest contours will be shown in other colours if there are nature conservation restrictions. It is forbidden to pick Christmas trees in reserves. When the map shows only state forest stands with green contour lines, double-click within the contours to open the detailed view of the stand – now you will see the county, the municipality, village name, as well as the form of ownership. If the ownership is state forest – RMK – you have chosen the correct place. The detailed view also shows the number of the quarter and the stand, and the size of the reserve area if there are nature conservation restrictions.
What to do if I see a dead wild boar in the forest?
Because African swine fever has been recorded in Estonian forests, you definitely have to keep away from the carcass of a wild boar if you see one. Please report the find to the local veterinary centre. Wash your clothes and clean your footwear after going to the forest. More information: www.seakatk.ee.