Christmas Tree Farms Tips

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What equipment do I need for my Christmas tree farm?

Get Equipped for Your Farm

If you decide to start your own Christmas tree farm you'll need to work hard to get it going. With good planning and enough laborers, you can easily plant up to 1000 seedlings a day by hand. You can't, however, get any work without the proper equipment. Here are the basic tools that you will need to get your farm up and running:

  • A mower
  • A backpack sprayer
  • Hand pruners
  • A dibble bar
  • A shearing knife
  • Pine tip moth monitors
  • Protective gear

How expensive is starting a Christmas tree farm?

How Expensive are Those Farms to Start?

How expensive is starting a Christmas tree farm? The truth is that costs vary depending on the size of the farm and the initial investments. If you have to start from scratch and buy everything from land to supplies, the process could be pricey.

However, if you already have the land, the costs involved with creating a tree farm will be low. Smaller farm owners usually provide their own labor, which will eliminate a lot of costs. As a business grows, however, it will become necessary to make additional investments, which may or may not include hiring more laborers.

How long do Christmas trees take to grow?

Plan Ahead with Christmas Tree Farms

Starting a Christmas tree farm is quite a process, and a lengthy process at that. Creating your own farm isn't something that you can make a profit with immediately—trees don't grow overnight. Even if you get your finances, land, and equipment situations sorted out, sizable trees usually take about 4 to 5 years to grow.

To run a successful and fully stocked farm, growers should plant a controllable amount of trees, taking into consideration the time available for maintenance. And, since trees planted one year won't be available for 4 to 5 years, new plots should be planted each of those years so that the farm can continue to produce sizable trees for years to come.

How can I tell if a tree farm tree is fresh?

Check Yout Tree Farm Tree for Freshness

If you intend to buy a tree from a Christmas tree farm, be on the lookout for the freshest specimen possible.

How can you tell if a tree is fresh? Here are some great tips:

  • A fresh tree will be a healthy green color and have minimal browning needles.
  • The needles should be flexible and should not fall off easily. Run your hands through the needles, how many came off? Needles should not fall of readily.
  • Pick the tree up so it is a few inches from the ground and drop it on the butt end. Minimal green needles should fall (it's OK if a few brown ones do).

How should I prepare for the Christmas tree farm?

Prepare Yourself for a Day on the Farm

Christmas tree farms are great places to pick up that perfect tree but, if you're headed out to one, be prepared. Tree shopping and chopping on the farms is dirty business so dress appropriately in clothes that you don't mind ruining. Additionally, wear shoes that are comfortable as you might have a hike ahead of you.

If the weather looks ominous, pack toss a slicker and some waterproof boots in your vehicle. And, those in charge of cutting down the tree and loading it should bring thick gloves.

*Christmas tree farms will usually allow your dogs but, unless he is an angel, leave Fido at home. And, if you do feel the need to bring him, don't let him run astray or mark any trees.

How should I select a tree farm in an urban area?

Be Careful With Urban Tree Farms

If you live in an urban area you may not have access to many Christmas tree farms so you will need to put extra thought into your tree selection process. Keep in mind that trees sold in retail lots that are in urban areas are likely to have come form far away—even states away.

If these trees have traveled a distance, it's likely that they were exposed to winds while in transit, which might have dried them out. There's also a good possibility that they were cut weeks earlier and are not exactly fresh. A good rule of thumb is to get to the lots early so you can get the pick of the litter.

In addition, look for lots that don't allow the trees to be exposed to direct sun light, trees that are shaded are less likely to dry out. And, it doesn't hurt to ask the retailer when the tree shipment was received and when he is expecting a new one.

How do I cut down a Christmas tree?

Christmas Tree Cutting is a Two Man Job

So you hiked all the way through that Christmas tree farm and found the best tree in the woods. Now what? Cut it down, dummy! If you're unsure about how, exactly to cut down a tree, don't improvise.

Here are some helpful tips to help you get the job done:

  1. Cutting the tree is easiest when done by two people.
  2. The person in charge of cutting should lie on the ground while the other person supports the tree and holds up the lower branches.
  3. As the cutter cuts the helper should gently tug on the tree to ensure that the saw slit remains open and the saw does not become lodged.
  4. And, all pulling on the tree should occur on the side of the tree opposite of the cut.
  5. A back cut should be made before the final cut coming from the opposite side.

Does the tree supplier make a difference?

Ask About Tree Suppliers

When choosing a tree farm from which to purchase your tree, it's important to know where those trees are coming from. Christmas tree farm suppliers should definitely be taken into consideration before picking a tree. It's smart to select a farm that has had the same supplier for a minimum of five years. If the farm has a strong relationship with the supplier, it's likely that they have been satisfied with the trees in the past and are more certain of their products.

No matter how long a farm has had a supplier, you should make your own assessment of the tree quality. Examine the color, needle retention, customer demand, customer satisfaction, and the overall appearance of the trees. The more thorough you are, the more likely it will be that you will be pleased with your purchase.

Should I look on-line for Christmas tree farms?

Don't Settle for Any Old Farrm

There are Christmas trees everywhere but if you don't know where to look you may never find one. Want an easy solution? On-line retail real Christmas tree farms are a great place to start looking. Utilize that valuable resource—the web. The Internet puts endless information right at your fingertips and you're likely to find a sizable list of farms in your area in minutes.

A good rule of thumb is not to go to just any farm. Search for reviews online. And, ask others that you know to give you suggestions. If all else fails the proof is in the pudding so head out to the farms and check out the merchandise yourself. If you don't like what you see, head to a different place until you see trees that you find to be of good quality.

Are tree farms safe?

Safety First on the Tree Farm

Safety should come first, even when you are somewhere as seemingly safe as a Christmas tree farm. Dangers lurk in even the most harmless-seeming places. The majority of tree farms are very well kept but the truth is that there are some that aren't. In addition, there are some things that a tree farmer can't control.

When you are looking at trees on the farm, be aware of your surroundings. Look for stinging insects like bees, and make sure that you don't step on any fire-ant piles (or worse yet, pick a tree that's in one and bring them back to your home). Also look around for tree stumps, an vines, uneven ground and stray blades or sharp saws.

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Joe Wallace