Visit the state's official Christmas tree

Elias Hubbard
November 21, 2017

He said he's concerned about the availability of land on which to grow Christmas trees.

"I still have the original John Deere 580 walking plow that was used to cut furrows into the side hill and they planted the trees in those furrows by hand", Hartung said.

A local tree farm is selling a different kind of Christmas tree, one that can live on after the holidays.

In most cases Balsam firs were substituted.

City workers have been scouting trees for weeks, he said, and have already raised a tree in front of the State House.

"It's being fixed as we speak", Bolen said. The nationwide shortage has him frantically looking for trees. We got all we ordered and the prices stayed about the same. "We haven't increased our prices for the past five or six years even though our prices have increased". "This year when we said we would be up, he sent a text back and said we don't have enough trees for you".

The shortage is the result of the recession that began almost a decade ago, and it's affecting tree farms nationwide.

"We have white pine, red cedar, and Leyland cypress", explained Bert Noble, owner of Noble Christmas Tree Farm in Kinston.

Sales tend to peak on weekends, with almost 90% of tree sales occurring by the second weekend in December.

A July report from GWD Forestry predicted that recent droughts and wildfires in those two states may keep the tree shortage going until 2025.

Goebel said his supplier boosted the costs of their tree shipments for the first time in 15 years.

The tree-sellers told us they have also noticed an across-the-board price rise of approximately 10% in wholesale and retail prices after many years of recession-led cheaper trees.

"Going out as a family and getting a real tree at a choose-and-cut or a garden center is part of building family tradition", he said. It's a better harmony than last year's sound of poor sales.

That being said, it only made sense to turn a big "to do" each year into a yearlong hobby and, eventually, a lucrative business.

The South Carolina Christmas Tree Association lists about 40 farms in the state. Tree permits and forest maps are available during regular office hours, Mondays through Fridays, at any Malheur National Forest office.

So we know they're insanely popular, but what are they?

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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