Summer Heatwave Played Scrooge with Christmas Trees
Because of the pandemic, many people are still choosing to stay home for the holidays. That may make having a traditional Christmas with a real tree an essential part of a family celebration. Getting your perfect tree early this year will be necessary as the demand may be greater than the supply.
While we were sweltering in over 110-degree heat last summer, the last thing we were thinking about was Christmas. Now, with the holidays just weeks away and the effect of the weather on our tree farms is realized. Oregon is the United States’ largest producer of Christmas trees, and the impact will even hit us close to home.
Oregon State University Extension service reported that after the heatwave, “most tree species showed a variety of damages including a mix of:
- Distorted leaders (some with dead terminal buds and burnt/red needles)
- Wilted new growth tips
- Death of the entire tree, in some cases.”
Some experts, however, believe that the real shortage will be experienced in 2022.
Bonique Hollinrake, Project Manager at Green Acres Landscape understands that the heatwave could cost farmers millions of dollars.
“The heat has affected the seedlings, especially the Noble fir trees,” she said.
Green Acres nursery sells Nobles, Grands and Douglas Fir trees for Christmas, along with flocked trees. They expect their first shipment to come in by mid-November.
“We don’t anticipate that our customers will have a difficult time getting a tree, yet we’re recommending that if you have a specific tree or size of tree in mind that you visit us early.”
Hollinrake added, “There’s nothing like the look and smell of a real tree. I hope people can experience that this year with their family at home.”