Virginia Christmas tree growers deliver on this year’s harvest

christmas-treeIt’s not quite Thanksgiving, but the Christmas tree harvest is in full swing and Virginia growers are experiencing a good one.

The state’s Christmas tree industry includes thousands of growers, according to the Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association. It is estimated that they have more than 7 million trees planted.

VCTGA Vice President John Carroll grows several varieties of Christmas trees at Claybrooke Christmas Tree Farm, a choose-and-cut operation in Louisa County. “The crop is good this year,” Carroll said. “Most choose-and-cut growers are selling most of their inventory every year, and this year won’t be any exception. Seventy-five percent of sales are derived from the experience of finding the perfect tree in the field.”

Most growers are sensitive to keeping their product affordable.

“There will most likely be a modest increase in tree prices this season to help recoup some of the recent increases in production costs,” Carroll said.

Rodney Richardson of Mt. Rogers Tree Farm in Grayson County is in the midst of harvesting trees from nearly 200 acres on which he grows Frasier firs for wholesale and retail sales.

“This is one of the driest seasons I can remember,” Richardson said. “But our trees look good, and this year’s yield is about the same as last year.”

The majority of trees being harvested and sold this season are large, mature trees, so while the dry weather is a concern, Richardson said it shouldn’t have a big impact on his harvest.

The growers’ association suggests using a tree stand that will hold a gallon or more of water. A fresh tree can absorb 3 or more quarts a day for the first few days after it is placed in water.

“It’s ideal to buy the tree early and put it in a bucket of water,” Richardson said.

Carroll said consumers are in for “a great year to find the perfect Christmas tree. We are fortunate to have a wide range of species in Virginia that are available for cutting at farms or purchased fresh-cut at local retail outlets. Purchasing a real tree supports local agriculture.”



augusta free press
augusta free press news

UVA Basketball Fans!

uva basketball team of destiny
Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25. The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe, and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018 through to the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

Dick Vitale on Team of Destiny: “This is a hoops story you will LOVE! Jerry and Chris capture the sensational and dramatic championship journey by Tony Bennett and his tenacious Cavalier team. UVA was Awesome Baby and so is this book!”

Ralph Sampson on Team of Destiny: “Jerry and Chris have lived and seen it all, even before my time. I highly recommend this book to every basketball fan across the globe. This story translates to all who know defeat and how to overcome it!”

Buy here.

AFP Business

As professional consultants, Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including website design, SEO, TV/radio, video work, branding and logos, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation. Augusta Free Press LLC was founded in 2002.

Web Design

Augusta Free Press has designed more than 800 websites for clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design, content development and SEO. Short on staff? We’ll work with you to update your AFP-designed website in a timely manner or train your staff to make changes.

Marketing/Social Media Management

Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.

Graphic Design

Augusta Free Press will help you take your vision to the next level. From branding and logos to print materials, our team will work with you to develop products to showcase your business. From brochures and rack cards to full-color magazines or print/digital ads, we’ve got you covered.

Event Planning/Fundraising

Augusta Free Press will help you plan the best event for your organization. From an open house or anniversary to a 5K or Pay Per View, we can handle it all. Looking for training for your sales staff? We can help energize your employees or board. Need ideas to raise more money? Let us help you plan a successful event. Want to hold a news conference or need help with a press release? We can do that too.

Click here for more.