Christmas Trivia - Christmas Tree Farms

How many Christmas trees are growing in Christmas tree farms in the US?

Natural or plastic? Every family at some point wonders whether to favor a natural or artificial tree. Nothing beats the smell of a real tree, but there are distinct disadvantages as well, including cost and mess.

However, live Christmas trees may not be bad for the environment. If the Christmas trees come from tree farms, as opposed to forests, then they are a sustainable resource, because farmers tend to re-plant the trees they cut down, which makes the enterprise roughly carbon-neutral. And if the trees are chipped into mulch or compost, or used as firewood, rather than sent to a landfill, then the tree resource is re-used as well.

Before the Christmas trees are harvested, Christmas tree farms produce oxygen and absorb CO2. Christmas tree farms may also create healthy soil and wildlife habitat, although probably not where they exist as a large-scale monoculture.

The first Christmas Tree farm consisted of 25,000 Norway Spruces planted in New Jersey in 1901. Before that, Christmas trees had nearly always been removed from forests.

The National Christmas Tree Growers Association, which is the trade association for US Christmas tree farmers, reports that approximately 350,000 acres of Christmas trees are farmed in the US. The top five Christmas Tree growing states are Oregon, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. There are approximately 13,000 active Christmas Tree farms in the US, which grow approximately 17 million trees per year. According to the US Department of Agriculture, at any given time, approximately 157 million trees are growing on Christmas tree farms in the US.


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