AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)- Gay’s Christmas Tree Farm has sold locally grown Christmas Trees for nearly thirty years. However, it hasn’t always been easy. When starting his farm, Matthew Gay, says he completely sold out of trees and had to close down for business. He was unfamiliar with the tree planting and rotation process. Now the farm sells over 6,000 trees annually to customers across the CSRA.
While he does grow a majority of his trees, he also relies on a Tree supplier in North Carolina. Many tree farm owners that depend on trees from out of state growers are now experiencing what they consider a tree shortage. Gay attributes the shortage due to a lack of trees of planted during the recession nearly ten years ago.
“What I heard is the northern trees like the Fraser Firs, probably ten years ago there was a glut of trees and everyone had flooded the market and prices dropped on the trees so a lot of growers up North backed off on the trees they were planting.” Gay says.
Because of a limited supply of trees and a greater demand, the average price of a tree has gone up about ten percent in comparison to last year.
“What it does if my supplier goes up on me $2 dollars a tree of course then the consumer ten has to pay the difference and I have to go up $2 dollars per tree. For me the trees grown here I charge a certain price per foot. My trees have not gone up, the ones I grow here because there’s no shortage of the trees here. Now the Fraser firs that I get from North Carolina my supplier did not go up on me at all this year.” Gay added.
Because of the consistent prices on his farm, Benjamin and Elisabeth Carroll say there are able to not only purchase an affordable tree but to also start a tradition with their 7-month old daughter.
“It was about the same as what we paid last year nothing increased at all. its competitive pricing with everywhere else you’ll go.” Carroll says.
At Gay’s farm they also provide hayrides and offer complimentary snacks while your purchase your tree. Prices for trees on the farm range from $50-$70. You can find out more information on their Facebook page: https;//www.facebook.com/Gays-Christmas-Tree-Farm-153718961338444/