How to assemble your Lulav & Esrog
Whilst halachikly speaking one can bind the Arba’as HaMinim together with any material, the generally accepted custom is to use leaves from a lulav. That being said, there is no single universally accepted manner with which to bind the lulav.
In most communities, the lulav, aravos and hadassim are bound together by way of a special holder woven of lulav leaves (“a basket”), which slides up the bottom of the lulav and has pockets on either side for the hadassim and aravos. This holder is then securely tied to the lulav with a ring made using a lulav leaf.
Most communities have a custom to use three lulav-leaf ring ties around the lulav, one ring for each of our three forefathers (Avraham, Yitzchak and Yaakov). As such, in addition to the ring with which the holder is fastened, another two rings are usually fastened around the lulav’s midsection above the woven basket.
Holding the lulav with the spine (smooth side) facing towards you, the 3 hadassim branches are placed in the pocket to the right, and the 2 aravos branches in the pocket to the left. The tops of the hadassim should be approximately 8-10cm below the “shidra” - the part of the spine where the topmost leaves emerge from it. The tops of the aravos should be just a little lower than the tops of the hadassim.
The Chabad minhag is not to use the woven holders, but rather to tie the hadassim and aravos directly to the bottom of the lulav using three lulav-leaf rings. Holding the lulav with the spine (smooth side) facing towards you, the 2 aravos branches are placed one to the right of the lulav and one to the left. The 3 hadassim branches are also placed one to the right of the lulav and one to the left (somewhat covering the aravos), with the third branch placed in middle/front —a bit towards the right side. In addition to the three three lulav-leaf rings that hold together the three species, another two rings are used higher up, around the midsection of the lulav. The lower of the two additional rings should be covered by the hadassim and aravos.
Note: If you need help binding the lulav and esrog you bought from B&H Sukkot, please just let one of our helpful staff know during collection.