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Expert explains reasons for Christmas tree shortage this year

Drought, warm weather and 2008 recession to blame
Posted at 6:12 PM, Nov 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-28 21:39:24-05

BAKERSFIELD, CA  — Experts say there is a Christmas Tree shortage again this year. But despite some assumptions that the wildfires were to blame, Chris Maretich, with Alpine Christmas Trees, says that is only a myth.

"We grow trees on plantations and the areas where they grow in Oregon haven't had any wildfires," said Maretich.

He says the reason for the shortage this season is nothing new. There has been less of a supply of Christmas trees for years because of the recession from 2008.

"There was less of a demand for seedlings and less plantings were going into the nurseries."

The shortage is also due to warm weather and the drought, according to Maretich.

"A lot of the seed, because of the heat, is not viable, so nurseries are planting them expecting to get seedlings and only about 60 to 70 percent of it germinates," said Maretich.

But good news for tree shoppers here in Kern County, Maretich says that they have enough trees on the lots for the people in Bakersfield this season.