One Single Christmas Tree Supported a Variety of Jobs
It takes many people to finally get one noble fir holiday tree to enjoy, and the tree in the Capitol Rotunda in Olympia was no exception. It was grown as a seedling at Silva Seed nursery in Roy. A planting crew planted it at the Winkelman's family farm. The family pruned it and nurtured it annually for many years. WSU Extension employees were consulted to promote overall tree farm health. State employees selected it. A tree-service crew harvested it and drove it to the capitol and Facilities Division employees helped bring it inside. Even the Governor lent a hand! (blogs.secstate.wa.gov)
Rural Children Benefit from Capitol Christmas Tree Every Year
While the tree in the capitol was donated by a generous Christmas tree farming family this year, the Association of Washington Businesses collected and donated money for rural families in need. For 26 years, the Holiday Kids' Tree Project has brightened lives for thousands of children and families in Washington state with the help of rural fire departments. This year is no exception. Firefighters in rural areas are often the ones who know the families who can use help. The money collected this year was presented to the firefighters while a choir sang and the tree was lit. The stuffed toys on the tree will be wrapped and donated to a local children's hospital after the holidays. (photo courtesy AWB)
Breathe Easy, Enjoy the View and Thank A Christmas Tree Farmer
Christmas tree farms act as natural carbon sinks; cleaning the air while producing lots of fresh oxygen. They stabilize soil, protect water supplies and provide refuge for wildlife. Often, Christmas trees are grown on soil that doesn't support other crops. They are renewable, with farmers planting one or more trees for every one harvested. Christmas tree farms, dotting the landscape, preserve the magnificent, rural, northwest landscape.
Growing ChristmasTrees is No Holiday
Noble fir trees are more popular than some other types of Christmas trees, but they face challenges making it to the market. According to the OSU Extension Service, culturing noble fir is very different from Douglas-fir, with more top work and individual attention to the tree's needs for shaping. As a result, the percentage harvest yield is lower for noble fir and the cost of production is greater. Noble fir is the most demanding tree species requiring the best soil drainage conditions. A root disease, currently with no control, can limit the health and production of noble fir for Christmas trees. The highest degree of expertise is needed to grow noble fir.