We've hung white pine, red oak, yew, beech and apple so far. (Click to see them.)
Healthy and still young at 30 years, it had been placed by someone misapprised of its potential (70' or more) and long term appearance. (After 15 years or so, the lower trunk bark is no longer peeling and cinnamon cream; only younger wood way up high still has that glow.)
Last year's branch (an apple, in red and green for love and fertility) comes down just before this year's goes up. We cut that well seasoned wood for kindling for friends' fires. Tradition as old as the hanging of a holiday branch as it that it's good luck to start the new year's fire from a bit of the old Yule log.