LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - If you’re buying a fresh Christmas tree this year, you may want to buy sooner rather than later.
A nationwide Christmas tree shortage at tree farms means that there aren’t enough trees to fulfill the demand. Chris Lambert, owner and operator of Southwest Louisiana-based Christmas Trees USA, ships his trees from a tree farm in Rochester, WA.
“A lot of other places, including us, have experienced shortages and it’s becoming more and more difficult to bring in trees,” Lambert said.
The shortage has been driving an increase in prices.
“We have felt the increases as well as just as everyone else has," Lambert said. "At the same time, some of our prices have had to go up slightly. We have done a good job of trying to keep our price increases as low as possible.”
Grant Christmas Tree Farm grows local Louisiana Christmas trees, and although those haven’t suffered a shortage, the crop of Frasier trees they ship from North Carolina has.
“We sell about 500 Frasiers a year,” said owner Gray Anderson. “I order mine in January and so that’s the reason I have a good selection of Frasiers this year. A lot of the tree farmers that waited 'til August to order weren’t able to get Frasiers.”
The shortage of Frasiers did mean that Anderson had to pay more to have them shipped.
“The cost I paid for the truckload of trees that I got did go up," Anderson said. "But the price that I put on my trees did not go up. I try to not increase my prices but just a small amount each year. We didn’t go up on any of our trees this year.”
That saying, those that want fresh trees are advised to come earlier to get the best pick.
Christmas Tree Farms has locations in Lake Charles, Moss Bluff, and DeQuincy. For more information, click here.
For more about the Grant Christmas Tree Farm, click here.