RALEIGH – From the White House to your house, N.C. Christmas tree growers have something for everyone. A 19-foot Fraser fir left Peak Farms in Jefferson Saturday destined for Washington, D.C., as the official 2012 White House Christmas Tree. Additional trees from Cool Springs Nursery in Banner Elk were also chosen for the residence of the vice president.
“This is the first time the White House tree and vice president’s tree have come from the same state,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “It speaks volumes about the quality of trees available in North Carolina.”
This weekend, choose-and-cut tree farms will open in the mountains and foothills for families hoping to find the perfect Christmas tree for their own house.
“A cold fall and good amount of moisture have really helped us have an excellent crop this year,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler. “Consumers should notice an ample supply and selection to fit any budget.”
North Carolina ranks second in the nation in Christmas tree production, and more than 5 million trees are harvested annually. Choose-and-cut operations can be found in the western part of the state. Tree buyers who don’t have time to drive to the mountains can find trees at farmers markets and retail locations across the state.
North Carolina is also the second-largest producer of another holiday decorating favorite, poinsettias. In 2011, the state produced more than 4.4 million poinsettias and generated cash receipts of $17.6 million.
Consumers or growers can learn more about new poinsettia varieties and color combinations, as well as purchase flowers for their homes, at the following informational events:
Homewood Nursery and Garden Center in Raleigh will host a poinsettia open house Tuesday, Nov. 27, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The N.C. State University Poinsettia Open House will be held at the Horticulture Field Laboratory, next to J.C. Raulston Arboretum, in Raleigh for growers on Tuesday, Nov. 27, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and for the general public on Sunday, Dec. 2, from 1 to 5 p.m.
Mitchell’s Nursery and Greenhouse in King also will host an open house Sunday, Dec. 2, from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m.
To find N.C. Christmas trees, nearby choose-and-cut farms and locally grown poinsettias, go to www.ncfarmfresh.com.