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“Don't ye know what a Christmas tree looks like? It's tall and green and pointy!”
―Duncan teasing Thomas

Thomas' Tricky Tree is the seventh episode of the tenth series.


It is Christmas time and the Skarloey Railway engines are busy taking passengers and freight. Thomas is on his way to the Wharf to collect the Christmas tree from Sir Handel for the Fat Controller. However, upon arrival, Thomas cannot find it. Duncan asks Thomas if he is looking for something, so Thomas explains. Duncan cannot help but tease Thomas that he does not know what a Christmas tree looks like, making Thomas cross; he gets even more cross when Duncan suggests to Peter Sam that Thomas needs their help, which Thomas down-right refuses.

Thomas sets off to find the Christmas tree himself. First, he meets Sir Handel, who is about to explain that he has got the Christmas tree on his flatbed. But, Thomas interrupts him, jumping to the conclusion that Sir Handel (like Peter Sam and Duncan) is teasing him and wants to help him find the Christmas tree, leaving Sir Handel feeling confused.

Thomas carries on around the Wharf and meets Rusty in a warehouse, who asks Thomas if he needs help. Again, Thomas turns down Rusty's assistance. However, he begins to worry that he will not find the Christmas tree. In another warehouse, Thomas meets Skarloey, who asks if he needs help. Again, Thomas turns Skarloey down, not wanting to be teased by another narrow-gauge engine. Then, Thomas sees a flatbed with a green tarpaulin over it. Feeling excited, Thomas takes it, thinking that it is the Christmas tree that he has been looking for, but Skarloey is confused.

Thomas takes the flatbed out of the warehouse, but some frozen points get the better of Thomas, sending him into a siding. Thomas' flatbed crashes through the buffers and into the canal; but then, he realises how silly he had been when Skarloey explains to Thomas that the flatbed had no Christmas tree on it - it was a load of pipes. Also, he goes on to explain that Sir Handel delivered the tree earlier; so only he knows where it is, according to Duncan.

Thomas realises that he had been very silly in thinking that, him being a standard-gauge engine, he should have known better than the narrow-gauge engines. So admitting defeat, he goes off to the Transfer Yards to find Sir Handel, which is exactly where he is. After apologising to Sir Handel, Thomas asks him for his assistance, which Sir Handel happily accepts. Going back to the Wharf, Thomas collects the Christmas tree and thanks Sir Handel for his help. Duncan apologises to Thomas for teasing him and in return, Thomas apologises to Duncan for not asking for his assistance.

Once at the village, the Christmas tree is ready and the Fat Controller switches on the Christmas lights. Thomas now knows that, no matter what size he and his friends are, he can still ask for their help.




  • As seen in the book, Not Bad Temper Thomas, James was intended to have a speaking role in this episode as he was also one of the engines to tease Thomas.
  • This is one of only two episodes to be seen on two different HiT Favorites DVDs, the other being the eighth series episode, Halloween.
  • A deleted scene shows Sir Handel wearing a different face mask when Thomas says he does not need help.
  • The music of the engines fighting where Thomas shunts the flatbed is reused from Calling All Engines!.


  • When Thomas puffs quickly away to find Sir Handel, a steam platform is clearly visible.
  • When Thomas meets up with Skarloey, the narrator says that Thomas puffed into another warehouse, even though it is the same warehouse where he met up with Rusty.


In Other Languages

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Language Title
Brazilian Portuguese Thomas e a Árvore
Chinese Mandarin 托马斯的圣诞树
Croatian Tomica i božićna jelka
Czech Tomášův Záludný Strom
Danish Thomas og Den Forsvundne Træ
Dutch Waar Is De Boom?
Thomas Kijkt de Kat uit de Kerstboom
Finnish Tuomaksen Joulukuusi
French Thomas et le Vert Arbre
Thomas Arbre Délicat
German Wo ist der Weihnachtsbaum?
Greek το δύσκολο δέντρο
Hungarian A Karácsonyfa
Italian Thomas e L'albero di Natale
Japanese トーマスとクリスマスツリー
Korean 도와달라고 말해요
Latin American Spanish Thomas y un Trabajo Tramposo
Norwegian Thomas og Juletreet
Polish Kłopotliwe Drzewko Tomka
Portuguese Árvore de Thomas
Romanian Copacul Țepos al lui Thomas
Russian Где хитрая дерево?
Spanish Thomas y el Árbol Escurridizo
Swedish Den Förlorade Julgran
Turkish Thomas'ın Zor Ağacı

Home Media Releases


DVD Packs


  • Carnival Capers
  • The Complete Series 10

DVD Boxsets


DVD Packs




DVD Boxsets







DVD Boxsets