VIRGINIA (WDVM) — Some sellers have seen an increase in early Christmas tree sales – some individuals speculate this may have something to due with the ongoing quarantine and restrictions related to COVID-19.
“Unfortunately with the coronavirus, people have been more or less kind of stuck at home for lack of a better term, so they’re looking at ways to get out and maybe do things with their family and maintain that social distancing,” said Michael Wallace, the director of communications at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.
Scott Paddack, the district director for the Mason-Dixon Council with the Boy Scouts of America, has been working and selling trees and wreaths in Hagerstown, Maryland. He said a lot of people came out on their first-weekend open.
“We’re excited this weekend that we sold more trees on an opening weekend than we have in the past, but this weekend coming up is our biggest weekend,” he said.
Wallace said that buying a tree not only helps the economy, but also the environment. One Christmas tree can absorb about one ton of carbon dioxide in its lifetime, and that adds up.
“We’re trying to encourage consumers – Virginia residents as well as visitors – to buy a real live Virginia-grown Christmas tree.”
This is a large part of Virginia’s industry – Christmas tree sales make about two million dollars annually, and Virginia is the seventh leading state in total Christmas trees harvested and production acreage. The state has more than 500 farms – and the Virginia Tree Growers Association recently presented Governor Ralph Northam with two trees and several wreaths.
“Even during the pandemic, I hope families can safely enjoy this holiday tradition and support Virginia businesses. Tree farms are an important part of Virginia’s agriculture and forest industry, and we thank the Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association for all they do for our farmers and growers,” Northam said in a release.
“People are excited to be able to get out. People have been locked up for so long, and we’re hoping that people will come and support our programs through the purchase of a Christmas tree. They can always count on a smiling face and helping hand when they come here to buy a tree,” Paddack stated.
This provides a safe opportunity for more people to either start a new tradition or continue an old one during the pandemic.
“People want you to hold the tree for them so they can see it and pick the perfect tree so that the holidays are just as exciting,” Paddack said.
You can find a nearby Christmas farm in Virginia at the Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association’s website.
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