National shortage driving up prices of live Christmas trees

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The Forestry Commission are also encouraging people to visit one of their forest-based Christmas Tree sales centres to buy a real Christmas tree to help people to connect with nature during a time of year that is often associated with stress.

The organization's Christmas tree sale, now in its 63rd year, opened the day after Thanksgiving at the lot in McKelvey Park, next to Jessie P. Miller Elementary School in Bradenton. "We're thankful for that", said Willie Cooper, who is selling trees with the Boys and Girls Club. "Don't know what the quality of the tree will be from season to season", Erway said. Others, though, love the idea of turning the holiday upside down - literally.

Start with a fresh tree.

"Always be sure to give your tree a fresh cut once you get it home", advises Ian, who also notes that the tree can go straight from the farm into your home.

"So it's going to be a shortage for several years, especially your bigger trees", said the vendor. Fit the tree in the stand while it is still outdoors and wrapped up and then move the entire product inside to the right spot. Be careful to cut perpendicular to the stem axis, not at an angle or v-shape. If the trunk is splitting, it most likely has dried to a point where it will not be able to absorb water.

Keep it cool. Trees are used to being outdoors and not inside. "It really put a damper on the lots that were growing the tree because they planted less tree". Avoid drafts from heating vents, radiators and fireplaces as well.

Sandra Parrish recalls her father, Roy Forrester, the beloved custodian at Discovery Passage School, getting creative with their Christmas tree. When in doubt about the freshness of a tree, select another one. Do not keep the tree inside longer than 10 days, according to HGTV.

The successful development and commercial licensing of a new Christmas tree that will last longer and ship earlier was announced Thursday morning at Dalhousie's Agricultural Campus in Bible Hill, and is set to completely change the province's Christmas tree industry. Select lights that use low heat.

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