Christmas tree growers dropping in numbers - - Jackson, MS

Christmas tree growers dropping in numbers

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (WLBT) -  For some people there's nothing like a real Christmas tree, but finding a tree grown in Mississippi is becoming harder to find.

 Each year, there are fewer local growers. Mother nature, and the work that comes with the business, have a lot to do with it.

This year the Berg family of Clinton went Christmas tree shopping the day after Thanksgiving.  This year they're ditching the plastic. 

Adam Berg says, "I was like, you know, lets get a real one lets get the smell in here."

The Bergs found their perfect tree at Kazery Tree Farm on McRaven road, one of very few Christmas tree farms still in operation around the metro. 

Growers say their numbers are dwindling due to the amount of work it takes to grow the tree's in Mississippi's ever changing climate.

"We ended up having a loss because of the extreme freezing temps," says Don Kazery, owner of Kazery Tree Farm. "We had the length of time and this year we lost over 70 Christmas trees because of the extreme temperatures."

Kazery's farm has been making Christmases a little brighter for 10 years now, and he admits he's still learning tricks to the trade of growing.  He has to trim his trees several times a year and spray to keep them from catching diseases.

Kazery says "If you're fungus this is heaven for you where we live because of the moisture and the high humidity. All of that is a factor in creating fungus on the trees that's been something that over years has been a problem."

Kazery says many tree growers gave up in trying to grow locally after suffering losses.  

About 70 trees are usually sold a year here, but they're also selling an experience...letting people cut down your their own tree. It's a memory that can be shared from generation to generation.

"Knowing were part of the Christmas experience and we've had a lot of regular customers who have come back for many years that's encouraging," Kazery says.

The Kazery Christmas Tree Farm is located at 1470 South McRaven road.  

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