This season, many people are shopping for a perfect cut tree or live tree to decorate their homes. Our local Christmas tree growers face many challenges to growing a perfect tree, an expensive and time-consuming process. A Christmas tree takes 8 to 10 years to grow to a good size, and there are many hurdles along the way. Trees must be planted properly in good soil, not too shallow or not too deep. It may take up to three years for a transplanted seedling to establish a good root system.
Insect pests and plant diseases can cause problems for Christmas tree growers. Phytophthora root rot is problematic on tree farms in many states. Phytophthora is a fungus-like organism, favored by wet, saturated soils with poor drainage. Roots in saturated soil may be stressed. The best management strategies for root rot are the purchase of clean healthy seedlings and proper site selection, because the best possible control is to avoid Phytophthora root rot to start.
There are other pests and diseases that attack Christmas tree species, such as needlecast fungi that cause spotting and discoloration of needles, and needle drop. Growers must scout their trees, apply fertilizer and pest control, trim to shape, and keep up with research on tree species and new varieties. Sales of trees, following the 10 years of nurturing, all occur yearly within a 4 to 6 week period! Our Christmas tree growers are dedicated agricultural professionals who love to see smiles on the faces of people who purchase and enjoy the trees that they grow!
Find a Delaware Christmas Tree Grower near you at: http://www.delawarechristmastreegrowersassn.com/