BUTTE — It might be a blue Christmas for consumers who enjoy decorating artificial and live trees alike.
It's projected that live Christmas tree prices are going to rise 20 to 30 percent due to a mixture of rising demand, extreme heat, and drought affecting the trees.
"You know, every year Christmas tree farmers obviously have to plant trees and when there’s drought or extensive heat, the young trees have a hard time you know surviving so it kind of affects the whole line. . . tree farmers have to make up all those trees that they're losing by charging more for Christmas trees," said Trevor Peterson, Butte-Silver Bow Arborist.
Many artificial Christmas trees bought through Amazon or Walmart are shipped from China. It’s expected that prices will rise 20-25 percent thanks to high shipping costs and delivery delays.
Trevor Peterson says if you want to avoid rising costs by cutting your own tree, be careful where you cut it
"Everyone knows how bad fires have been lately so the fires are taking out Christmas trees and potential Christmas trees, young seedlings are having a hard time surviving because water is very important in the first few years of a tree's development," said Peterson.
Peterson says when deciding on which tree to cut down, pick from a crammed group.
"Just really try to select the overcrowded one, don’t select a tree that’s going to have a chance to survive and mature to old age," said Peterson.
Want to cut your own tree? Contact the forest service office to buy a permit which costs only $5.
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