A guide to finding a Christmas tree in the Baltimore area

The Baltimore Sun

While artificial conifers are easy to retrieve from the attic after Thanksgiving, there’s something about a real Christmas tree that many people still prefer.

Maryland has more than 65 farms that produce Christmas trees, including the Fraser fir, Douglas fir, concolor fir, Scotch pine, white pine and blue spruce, according to Maryland Christmas Tree Association.

Here are some options for those who want a live Christmas tree in their home this season.

Chop it down

The Maryland Christmas Tree Association maintains an online directory of farms organized by county that allow customers to choose and cut their own trees.

Some businesses require trees to be reserved earlier in the season before the cutting process, so farmers may recommend calling in advance to inquire about availability.

Buy it pre-cut

Marylanders might notice this year a shortage of pre-cut Christmas trees, which are often sold by nonprofits and religious organizations as fundraisers.

Groups or businesses typically purchase those trees from big-producing states like North Carolina and Oregon, which have suffered a shortage of late, said Gary Thomas, president of the Maryland Christmas Tree Association.

Christmas trees typically take eight to 10 years to grow, depending on their size. That means that growers who struggled to afford seeding new trees during the financial crisis in 2008 might be seeing the results of that now, he said.

“There’s enough trees out there, but you have to go to the farms,” Thomas said.

The association does not have a directory of places where pre-cut trees are sold. However, many farms offer pre-cut trees for sale on site.

Have it delivered

Christmas tree delivery services are seemingly scarce in Baltimore in 2018.

Pork ’N Pine, a quirky delivery service that offered Christmas tree delivery with a pulled pork sandwich, is going on hiatus this year, according to the business’ website. Another delivery service, Tree Me Baltimore, announced earlier this month that it had closed and would not be delivering this season.

However the Little Havana Restaurante y Cantina holds a Christmas tree sale next door in its old Globe lot. The business will deliver trees to Locust Point, Otterbein and Federal Hill, according to the business’ Facebook page.

Some Christmas tree farmers like Thomas might opt to offer a delivery of a Christmas tree if asked directly, he said.

How to dispose of it

Baltimore residents can donate Christmas trees for mulching at the Northwest Citizens’ Convenience Center, at 2840 Sisson St. The center will accept trees Monday through Saturday, excluding city holidays, Jan. 5 through Jan. 26. The center is open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

City residents and community groups may bring bags or containers to collect mulch for their own use or for neighborhood gardens, while supplies last.

Curbside tree collection runs Jan. 2 through Jan. 31. Residents should set out trees on their regularly scheduled trash collection day, at the same location where trash is collected. All tinsel and ornaments must be removed from trees before they are set out for curbside collection or brought in for mulching.

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