BRANDON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WXYZ) — Christmas Tree farms across metro Detroit are preparing for a rush of holiday shoppers in the next week. They say although there's a healthy supply of trees available this year, they will likely cost buyers more.
Workers at Candy Cane Christmas Tree Farm near Oxford say they've been preparing the trees and grounds for shoppers for several weeks ahead of their season open Saturday.
"It’s a lot of fun. There’s a lot of work, a lot of last minute prep because we’re not open all year," said farm owner Cathy Genovese. "Everything’s gotta be taken out of storage and set up all over again. So we’re like busy little beavers in those few weeks leading up to Christmas."
Genovese started the farm with her late husband Frank in 1977. The 15 acre farm includes thousands of Fraser fir, Korean fir and Concolor fir trees. After growing the trees for nearly a decade, Genovese says they sell them to customers around 6 to 10 feet tall.
Last year, growers nationwide reported a Christmas tree shortage driving up the cost of trees. Although the shortage occurred at the same time many products were in short supply due to lingering impacts of the pandemic, the Christmas tree shortage was tied to a nationwide recession about a decade prior. Growers say this year the stock is much healthier but families can still expect to pay more than usual.
"As you’ve seen food prices in the store, this is a farm. We use fertilizers. We use other weed items and we’ve spent this year probably 30-35% more on the inputs that go into the farm and we have raised our prices about 10%," said Genovese.
Genovese says while the prices have been marked up this year, it will still mean smaller profit margins for growers like herself as they try to keep the costs as affordable as possible.
Genovese says they feel blessed to have their trees in so many homes in metro Detroit.
"We’ve become pretty well known over the years and we love our customers. We are so thrilled to know that what we’ve worked so hard on during the years is going to grace somebody’s home for Christmas," she said.
Candy Cane Christmas Tree Farm officially opened for the season on Saturday.
They're expecting the weekend following Thanksgiving to be their busiest of the season. Genovese says they will likely close after the second week in December to ensure they have trees in stock for the 2023 season.