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Christmas Tree Facts

With today being Christmas, I thought it would be fun to look at some Christmas tree facts in today’s article.

  • Nearly 350 million real Christmas trees are currently growing on Christmas tree farms in the U.S. alone, all planted by farmers.
  • Approximately 25-30 million real Christmas trees are sold in the U.S. each year.
  • North American real Christmas trees are grown in all fifty states and Canada. Eighty percent of artificial trees worldwide are manufactured in China, according to the U.S. Commerce Department.
  • Real trees are a renewable, recyclable resource. Artificial trees contain non-biodegradable plastics and possible metal toxins such as lead.
  • For every real Christmas tree harvested, one to three seedlings are planted the following spring.
  • There are about 350,000 acres in production for growing Christmas trees in the U.S.; much of it preserving green space. Each acre provides the daily oxygen requirements of 18 people.
  • There are close to 15,000 farms growing Christmas trees in the U.S. with over 100,000 people employed full or part-time in the industry.
  • It can take as many as fifteen years to grow a tree of typical height (six to seven feet) or as little as four years. The average growing time is seven years.
  • The top Christmas tree producing states are Oregon, North Carolina, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Washington.
  • Seventy-six percent of purchased real Christmas trees were pre-cut and twenty-four percent were cut your own.
  • The most common Christmas tree species are Balsam Fir, Douglas Fir, Fraser Fir, Noble Fir, Scotch Pine, Virginia Pine and White Pine.
  • In Florida, Red Cedar, Virginia Pine, Sand Pine, Spruce Pine, Arizona Cypress and Leyland Cypress are grown specifically for use as Christmas trees.
  • In Florida, 16,214 Christmas trees were harvested with nearly 1,000 acres in production in 2012.
  • There are more than 4,000 local Christmas tree recycling programs throughout the United States.

Sources for these facts include the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service and the National Christmas Tree Association and the Florida Christmas Tree Association.

Larry Williams, UF/IFAS Extension Office, Okaloosa County, December 21, 2016