Local Christmas tree farms see increase in sales this year

Local Christmas tree farms see increase in sales this year
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Local Christmas tree farmers say they have seen an increase in sales this year.

The Christmas tree at the First Baptist Church Learning Center in Carl Junction has brought a lot of joy to the little preschool students who helped pick it out.

“Merry Christmas!”, said 5-year-olds Kenleigh Palmer and Rorie Camerer.

They got the tree on a class field trip to the Bridgestone Farm in Webb City.

Teacher Kara Nunez, who helped cut down the tree, says warmer weather right after Thanksgiving made the trip possible.

“It was just really fantastic for the kids to be able to enjoy the time out and not have to worry about rushing or being cold,” Nunez said. “They were able to take the time to look at the trees and learn a little bit about them.”

And they were not the only ones.

Owner Andy Johnson says his farm saw hundreds of customers during each of the first three weekends after Thanksgiving.

He says weather played a factor, due to seeing warmer temperatures this year compared to last year.

“This year was an excellent year for Christmas tree sales,” Johnson said. “Weather was phenomenal, pretty much every weekend leading into it.”

Johnson estimates he sold nearly 300 trees this year, most ranging between 6 and 10 feet.

“We probably sold in the neighborhood of 50 to 75 more than last year,” he said.

Johnson says the weather throughout the entire year also had a positive impact on the quality of the trees.

“We didn’t have near the stress on them this year, as far as it being too wet or too hot,” he said. “This was actually a pretty good year overall.”

Johnson says a positive customer experience is beneficial to his business in the long-run.

“We are in the business of more than just Christmas trees,” he said. “We’re in the business of having families come out year after year, setting up that tradition of coming out to the farm.”

“I see it being a future field trip, for sure,” Nunez said.

The Bridgestone Farm owner says it takes about six years for them to grow a tree to a sellable size.

With 3,500 trees currently on the grounds, they will plant another 750 to 1,000 trees in the spring.