The top pictures is 2009 and the other pictures are 2011. I purchased a 7.5' Noble in 2009 to try it out. The price to retail one was going to be steep and make it a hard sell. I thought if I had one myself I could speak about the quality compared to the mass merchandiser stuff. The first year it really looked good and I was content with it. The box could have been better for such an expensive tree but that was it. The following year in 2010 when the tree was a year old I noticed some of the foliage was starting to harden up. The tree had actually been kept in my house (Buda, TX) with heat & AC while in storage. From 2010 to 2011 I kept the tree in a 30x45 building I had built on my property. Because this is Texas I insulated everything. The temp in the building doesn't exceed 100 F in summer or get below 40 F in winter. When I just took my tree out to put it up I could immediately tell it had gone down hill even more and faded a little. This thing had never been in the sun on display and was kept boxed and protected while in storage. The foliage had also hardened up even more. Has anyone else owned a HBL Noble and experienced some aging issues you wouldn't expect in what is supposed to be a high end tree? When I was a kid we had a set of three Christmas tree that had similar looking real foliage but it was the whole tree not just the exterior. The limbs even looked like real wood. We had the tree's from the mid 70's thru about the 90's before they started to fall apart. These things were always kept in the attic where it was over 100F (Maine) and we never had any problems. I suspect these tree's were probably made in the USA back when this was actually feasible.