Mature Christmas trees survive drought - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Mature Christmas trees survive drought

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LA CRESCENT, Minnesota (WXOW) - Excessive heat and drought took a toll on Christmas trees this summer. But if you're looking to buy a fresh tree this holiday season you are in luck. Farmers say mature trees are looking good and there will be plenty available this season.

This is because most mature, living room-sized trees have well established root systems. But not all trees escaped the summer unscathed. Bruce Bauer, owner of Bauer's Market and Nursery in La Crescent, MN, said newly planted and very young trees suffered.

"Where a lot of Christmas tree growers in the Upper Midwest, here, that went through that, many of the little saplings that got planted this early spring really got droughted out and therefore met their demise."

This will no doubt be a financial burden for Christmas tree farmers. But since trees take several years to reach maturity, farmers will have a chance to make up for some of this years losses.

"What we're going to find is many of those growers will actually overplant," said Bauer. "By probably twice the amount next spring in 2013 to help make up for that loss."

And this is good news for consumers as well.

"I really don't think we're going to see an ill effect on pricing," said Bauer. "We certainly aren't seeing it this year. Will it affect [us] in the future? I very much doubt. Again, because the growers are going to overplant the next couple of years to make up for those losses of little saplings this year."

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