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Drought, increased demand expected to impact Christmas tree supply this year

Christmas is still a few months away, but there is concern that the drought in New Jersey will affect the state’s supply of Christmas trees.

News 12 Staff

Sep 8, 2022, 8:54 PM

Updated 654 days ago

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Christmas is still a few months away, but there is concern that the drought in New Jersey will affect the state’s supply of Christmas trees.
Christmas is always on the minds of those who work at Cole’s Country Tree Farm in Alexandria Township.
"I think there is loss due to the drought depending on where you are in the state,” says Donna Allison Cole, of Cole’s Country Farm.
Cole runs the farm and is also with the New Jersey Christmas Tree Growers Association. She says that her crop has not suffered from the drought so far.
“That has not been a problem for us, thank goodness. Yet!” Cole says.
But farms in southern New Jersey are reporting more losses due to the lack of rain. Cole says it has to do with the differences in soil.
“The southern part of the state has more of a sandy soil, which is great drainage. Does not hold the moisture,” Cole says. “Whereas up here the soil is rocky and dense - and holds the moisture longer.”
Cole says that up north the anticipated shortages have to do with high demand, which has grown significantly during the pandemic. Cole’s Country Farm has an average of 15,000 trees on 40 acres. More and more are chopped down each year.
Cole says that it takes years to replenish the supply. Trees that were planted a few years ago still have a few more years until they are large enough to be cut down.
“We plant every year, so in the beginning, trees aren't ready to sell and no grower really wants to sell a 4- to 5-foot tree,” Cole says. “Because next year it will be perfect."
Cole says she expects prices to go up because of demand and the farm’s own increased costs. She says customers looking for a perfect tree should grab it early in the season.


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