Local Christmas Tree Farm Prepares for Holiday Season

CANTON, S.D.-The holidays are a busy time of year for Todd Gannon. So he’s getting ready. His business, Riverview Christmas Tree Farm opens this weekend. 

“We’ve had customers that have been coming for 20 to 30 years to our farm, so we’ve really become part of a family tradition for a lot of folks,” said Gannon. 

This year he’s putting a new spin on Christmas.

“Recently we’ve been dyeing some trees just to try something unique and new. We have blue trees and white trees,” said Gannon. 

All dyed with a safe, non-toxic paint. Painted trees is a new trend he saw in a catalog. He thought it would be a good way to help the less popular trees find a home for the holiday.

Although farms in the area haven’t fared well this year due to flooding, Gannon says his is doing quite well.

“Actually all the moisture has been good for the trees. We’ve had phenomenal growth, so this year we have really tall trees just cause most of the trees put on over a foot of growth this past year,” said Gannon. 

While some folks fancy a fake over a fir, if you pine for the real thing, Gannon recommends you come early. 

“Every year over the past five years sales have steadily increased,” said Gannon. 

He says Christmas trees are in high demand.

“It’s a lot of fun to pick your own down. Obviously a real tree is good for the environment. When you choose and cut your own, the freshness is ten times better than something you would buy,” said Gannon. 

He used to plant around 2,000 trees a year. To meet the demand, he’s bumped that up to 3,000. The only problem? It takes seven to nine years for the trees to fully grow.

“Our supply will increase, but it’s going to be another two to three years until we actually see that supply hit the market,” said Gannon. 

Meaning supplies are limited for those looking to spruce up their homes.

Beginning Saturday November 23, the Riverview Christmas Tree Farm will be open for four weekends. It’s open on Saturdays from 10 a.m to 5 p.m. and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.

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