The Christmas pickle is a lesser-known Christmas tradition for some Americans. A Christmas tree decoration in the shape of a pickle is hidden on a Christmas tree, with the finder receiving either a reward (extra present) or good fortune for the next year. This tradition is commonly believed by Americans to come from Germany and be referred to as a Weihnachtsgurke although it is not. In Germany, St. Nick comes much earlier in the month, so the pickle would have been long found by the time Weihnacht
rolled around. It doesn't appear that in Germany there is such a thing as the German Christmas Pickle at all.
Woolworth's, the great five-and-dime store, started importing German-made glass-blown Christmas ornaments into the United States in the 1880s. Many of the ornaments took the shape of fruits and vegetables, and among them were pickles. There is no sign that the pickles held any special importance to the German ornament-makers, though. And it is possible that pickles simply didn't sell as well as other ornaments, on account of their color being roughly the same as that of an evergreen Christmas tree, and thus, hard to spot when hanging on a tree. Therefore, Woolworth's attached to the pickles a card explaining this "ancient German tradition," and the legend, for whatever reason, took off. (Pickle ornaments today still have these cards attached, explaining the "German tradition.")