Starting Xmass Tree Farm.... Help

Discussion in 'Christmas Trees & Seasonal' started by gregdowd, Jan 3, 2007.

  1. gregdowd

    gregdowd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    have recently purchased farm with 8 acres of open hay field. Looking to grow xmass trees start planitng in Spring 07. Have done soil test and it's perfect for growing evergreen trees and shrubs. Probably will do three varieties, Frasier Fur, Norway Spruce, Balsum Fur. The big question I'm having is how many to order first season, and what spacing to give each plant? Should I stager the planting seasons in consecutive years? or order several different sizes all at once?

    Just trying to figure all this out to be ready for Spring 07.

    Right now thinking odering 200 of each variety all the same size.

    Then Spring of 08 order 200 again of each, and so on and so.
  2. Mike Fronczak

    Mike Fronczak LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 301

    I'm in same thing here we have 9 acres, but between the horse area, pond, lawn theres 4-5 left of field. There are several books out there as well as associations look around you'll find them. 200 trees isn't that many, I just order 1000 & that's not much either. From what I've seen planing on 6x6 grid you get around 1200/acre, one book said 5x5 grid is acceptable & they used to plant 4x4 (years ago). All depends on your goals for size of trees. Musser Forests has a decent book, seedlings & planting bar.
  3. gregdowd

    gregdowd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    Ok thanks for the responce, Looking to build up the supply over the years. Could start with 1000 mix var. Then order 200-500 per year so there is a nice mix of sizes when it comes time to open the doors and cut.
  4. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Messages: 7,961

    Dont crowd them. I would give 5 SF each tree when planting then cull the ugly ones to give around 10SF each. You can always B&B the small ones as you cull them out and sell them.

    You need plenty of room to allow for symetrical growth and to trim them.
  5. Guthrie&Co

    Guthrie&Co LawnSite Senior Member
    from nc
    Messages: 784

    First thing is whats the elevation? you wont be able to grow a fraser unless the elevation is right
  6. gregdowd

    gregdowd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 24

    Evelvation is 164' above see level. I understand the F. fir is native to West Virgina mountains, but have had good success with this variety in the New England Area over the years from B&B landscape plantings where elevation was not a consideration. Have also seen this species grown in other Tree Farms in New England with very good success. Not sure how much elevation is the most important thing, as compared to soil, sun, moisture, care and maitenance.
  7. desert rose gardening

    desert rose gardening LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 387

    Sounds like everyones given you good information so far, you can also join the National Christmas Association or the one in your state, then you will have as much information as possible.
  8. tom9054

    tom9054 LawnSite Member
    from iowa
    Messages: 19

    not sure how warm it stays in your part of the country, but we used to keep spruce buried on the bottom of the pile till the 15th because of their tendency to shed.
    plant more balsam, try some of those canaan fir.( tho I've never seen a cannan) even a few concolor would work ok.

    my grower dude won 1st place this year with a concolor at Wisconsin tree growers convention. oops guess that was last year.

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