Despite a hot, dry summer that killed a lot of young Christmas trees in the state, growers say they’re ready for another successful selling season.
This year’s drought destroyed tens of thousands of small Christmas trees on farms across the state. The newbies would have needed seven to 10 years to grow up to be sellable holiday trees. Wisconsin Christmas Tree Producers Association Executive Secretary Cheryl Nicholson says for most farms in Wisconsin, it will be business as usual this year, with plenty of healthy holiday trees, “The trees that you are buying are more than ten years old usually and the trees were affected by the drought were just planted.”
In Sauk County, Christmas tree grower Jim Dohner lost thousands of young trees too. He says his farm got through the summer just fine. However, he says a second year of drought could be catastrophic, “Like 1988, 1989, we had back-to-back droughts at that point. At that time it just wiped everything right out. So we hope we get a lot of moisture this fall and winter and next summer is a normal summer for us.”
There are more than 1,000 Christmas tree farms in the state.