Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Christmas Trees



We live in the “Christmas Tree Capital of the World” according to the local paper.  On my way to work there are miles and miles of trees in various stages of growth.  When we first moved out to the country I was fascinated with the tree harvesting that begins around Halloween.  It’s really a huge industry and it was interesting to see what it takes, and how long, to get a real Christmas tree ready for your house.
 
They begin as a tiny twig planted in a field.  Seven years later they are ready.  Okay, it is not quite that easy.  Once they reach a certain size, the trees must be trimmed regularly to maintain that perfect Christmas tree shape.   They also tie small sticks to the top of the tree to keep it straight and strong for your tree topper to fit on. 

 Harvesting must be done no matter the weather.  We always have rain, but this year was especially nasty during harvesting. Several of the larger fields hire a helicopter to move the trees closer to the road where they set up their staging area (for wrapping, loading, and shipping). We pulled over to watch this guy and I tried to get a video with my phone. Even though we had a break in the weather, it's not a very good video. But you can see him on the left hauling a load of trees over to the road on the right and then gently dropping them.  It's amazing to watch because the way he sets those trees down is almost like a ballet.  He goes back and forth all day moving trees.





video



When you go out to a tree farm to cut your own, they will put it on a shaker for you, which gets all of the spiders and bugs off. Then, if needed, they will wrap it for you to transport.  All trees purchased by a commercial buyer are wrapped before being loaded into semi trucks.  When people cut their own they usually just tie it to the top of their car for the trip home.  But sometimes they need it wrapped.  Here is another poor video taken with my phone.  I hope you can see it well enough.


video


Two of our closest friends make their living on Christmas trees. They give us a  terrible time because we have a fake tree, and have had it for fifteen years!
But it's still fun to go out to the tree farms to pick up a wreath and share a cup of hot cocoa with the good folks that make all those people smile.

Do you have a Christmas tree?  Is it real or artificial?

Blessings,

Red

8 comments:

  1. Always, Real. I once lived in a little town in Washington. It proudly proclaimed itself 'Christmas Tree Town USA.'

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Stephen,

      I should have guessed you would have a real tree. I have read your beautiful stories about your time in the Pacific Northwest.
      God bless.

      Delete
  2. Always real! It is an event to go find the perfect tree with our kids and then come home to decorate while listening to Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney sing Christmas Carols! We defintetly prefer traditional music at this time of year! I know definitely is spelled wrong back there..but my iPad won't let me fix it! Errrr! Be blessed my friend..Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That sounds like a wonderful tradition. I love that music too. We used to go out and cut our own tree,but that was many years ago.
      Have blessed Christmas!

      Delete
  3. Some years we get a real tree and others we use a small plastic one. This year we didn't get to the tree seller soon enough to buy a small tree that will fit on top of a table, so I will just get the little plastic one out of storage. The nurse at my allergists office was quite aghast when I mentioned that we do occasionally set up a real tree. Apparently, real trees are bad for folks with allergies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mrs S.,
      I had to laugh at your nurses comment. Real trees are only bad for folks that are allergic to real trees! :) I hope you're not! In our area a table top sized tree costs as much as a 5' tree. In that case I would be tempted to buy the big one and cut it down to the perfect table top size. But plastic or real, the reason for the season remains the same. Have a blessed Christmas!!!

      Delete
  4. I always have a Christmas tree, sometimes 2! I am like you, in the early years of my marriage, we always had a real tree. The mess was always aggravating, needles dropping everywhere, our turning point was the year that the tree started dying before Christmas and looked terrible! We went to an after Christmas sale and bought an artificial one and that was about 18 years ago. It still looks great and is so easy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mary,
      We also have two trees! :) We don't usually have them both up at the same time, but we have in the past. Glad your old tree is still holding up. Ours is starting to shed "needles" now and becoming quite messy :) Still beats the dry ones though.

      Merry Christmas!

      Delete

After getting multiple spam comments from Anonymous users, I have had to disable that part of my comments. I'm so sorry for the inconvenience. Please sign up and say hello!