Running a Christmas Tree Farm: A brief overview

Okay the video you’re gonna see right Now is a real brief overview of The different steps of raising christmas Trees i’m not gonna go into super Uh detail uh later this year as i do Each of these steps i’ll do a more In-depth video But uh right now you’re going to see Briefly what it’s like to plant Sheer weed control fertilize on a 5 acre Christmas tree farm We typically buy bare root seedlings From the local nurseries In bags of 500 and plant them From late february to mid april Okay right here you see a stump actually Quite a large stump this was a big tree That was just cut down And i’m going to plant another tree We just plant keep everything in our Same row Uh going north south so i’m going to Move a foot foot and a half I got to get a little bit away from the Stump one i don’t want to get Root rot to sharing two i don’t want to Have to dig up the roots that makes it Hard Um there’s no weeds growing here because It’s all shaded out So this is digging up nice and easy Right here I need to get the hole deep enough So that when i put the tree in the roots

Can hang straight down you don’t want The roots to be in there and then Folding back up that’s known as j Root and then the roots will grow back Up and bind on itself You need everything to continue straight Down so i got a nice deep hole i’ll put This in here And notice i’m putting the tree lower Than the top of the ground To begin with i’m going to push some Dirt on there and i’m going to lift the Tree Up a little bit and that makes sure that The roots are pointing down I want to pack this in to make sure that There’s no Air around the roots And then once we’ve done that just keep The tree upright Bring all the extra dirt back in Pack it down good Come back in seven years and take this Tree to put in your home Okay what you see right here is our quad Ready to spread some lime you should Have Got your soil ph to the right level Before planting But after 16 years our soil is beginning To get too acidic so we’re spreading Some lime to Raise the ph also we do uh Fertilizing in april and so usually we

Take Two ounces per foot of tree and actually Sprinkle it Around the drip line of the tree we Carry buckets and do this by hand Got the quad set up with a 100 pound Spreader actually there’s 150 pounds With the gold grill in there Caliper actually Ready to go up and down You can see in this picture that in the Spring about the same time we do the Fertilizing We also spray for weeds you can see that The Grass and weeds are dying in rows we Take a backpack sprayer and spray up and Down Individual rows and then we try to mow Through the rest of it we try to limit Our chemical use To be honest we go back and forth on Whether to kill the whole thing Or justin rose every couple years okay One of the Challenges we have here we’ve tried to Do different things here most Tree farms sterilize the soil so it’s Just bare dirt we don’t like that for a Number of reasons We don’t want a ton of chemical here and Then In a wet season it turns into a bunch of Mud so

We’ve been mowing up and down these rows You can see where it’s short And trying to spot spray but as you can See we had a ton of queen anne’s lace Come through here And grow up and cause a real problem but Uh We’ve decided that we’d rather have a Little bit of weed and no chemical Than a ton of weeds or a ton of chemical And no weeds next on our calendar is we Will be spraying for eight bits Usually this is uh late april early may After the trees put out a few more Inches on the leaders We checked the eighth of damage and then We start spraying for aphids We put altar and the backpack sprayer i Can hold three gallons of mixture in This sprayer And we go up and down the rows again Brand first Really get hard by the eight after we’re Done with this Usually we can let the trees just grow For a month and a half two months Before the shearing season starts Okay another really important job to do On the christmas tree farm and you can Do it Basically any time of the year is when Your tree gets about three feet tall Give or take a little bit You need to cut a handle on the

Christmas tree and what a handle is Is simply you have to cut all the Branches Off the tree that are within a foot of The ground you need to clear these out Completely And then that way as the tree grows when A customer comes to cut it down You have a foot that will fit inside the Christmas tree stand without branches in The way There’s a couple of other reasons you Want to do this too if you let the tree Grow for several years with branches Down here The trunk gets really big and it gets Harder to fit in the stand And the tree gets heavy and then last But not least If you leave these branches growing up Some of them Start growing up into the tree and then If you cut down the tree and the Customer says cut those branches off Please So i could fit in a stand and you cut Off a branch that’s sticking way up in The tree It takes away from the shape of the tree So if you cut the handles While the tree is still young then what You see is what you get when it’s Standing in the field Okay i’m going to show you how we do our

Shearing which again is normally in july I’m out here in december to create this Video but i want to Let you unders have a little Understanding about what’s going on here So this is this tree has done its bud Set it set its buds All these little buds are what branches Will be growing out of next year When we get they will start coming out Probably about april There will be soft tender shoots that Will come out that aren’t woody If the tree was to stop getting water They would completely wilt down But during shearing season what we do is We let them get most of their growth But before they get woody we take our Shearing knives which are Extremely thin long blades that we can Swing really fast or super sharp And then there would be so what we Should have done this year is this blade Should have swung right through here And because it’s not woody yet you can Go through the entire tree Without slowing down the blade and the Ends just fall off And you get a nice shape now i’m going To swing the blade a couple times On this one this is now woody so it’ll Slow it down a little bit But if you do this in late july or early August

It just cuts through it like it’s not Even there Okay again normally i’d be doing this in July this is woody so it’s going to give More resistance But i got my 16 inch blade with a 16 Inch handle I create the line i point the top Towards the top of the tree And i have the butt the handle towards The angle i want and then i’ll just Swing through And in july we’ll just swing right Through the entire tree And all the tips will fall off at that Angle keeping your line Is important now in late november you Got to get the farm ready for sales Get a few decorations up get the signs Out Bring people in Okay one thing that you will need if You’re going to have a christmas tree Farm is near your parking we got our Parking lot here You need something to sell your trees Out of or where people locate So normally we give away free hot Chocolate out of here we might sell some Ornaments And it’s a place for people to pay It’s nice if you make it give it a Country fill or a farm Feel or decorate it give it something

That gives it Adds to the atmosphere of your farm Then you add a couple animals to the Petting zoo and it’s go time for harvest Okay here’s our shaker it’s really Important to have a shaker if you’re Going to have a christmas tree farm Everybody wants the old dead needles Shaken out You stick the trunk of the tree in here And you just simply turn it on It vibrates and shakes this pile of Needles has been cleaned up multiple Times Uh you’ll get a hundred gallons of Several 50 gallon bags of needles in a Day Cleaned up One of the things that makes our farm Unique is i have a crew that will go out And cut the trees down for you So it’s a wee cut instead of a u-cut and They’re a great Working crew people that come out here Just love this service Especially those that are dressed a Little nicer Or maybe a little older All right perfect [Laughter] [Music] And then after we cut it down we’ll put It on a quad And haul it up front so that we can

Shake it And then we’ll just put it on the car For you as well Thank you for watching those of us from Flanigan homestead and esport christmas Trees Greatly appreciate it please consider Liking subscribing and sharing this There’s going to be a lot more videos on Growing christmas trees Raising a garden raising animals and Generally Country living

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