Grant Christmas Tree Farm preparing for holiday season amid historic drought

Published: Sep. 21, 2023 at 7:52 PM CDT
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GRANT, La. (KPLC) - If visiting a tree farm and picking out a live Christmas tree is part of your family’s holiday traditions, you may be wondering how this year’s drought will affect those plans.

We caught up with the owner of Grant Christmas Tree Farm to find out how his trees are faring.

It’s been at least four months since the farm received substantial rain, according to owner Gary Anderson, but he and his team are still pushing through despite the detrimental weather.

Anderson said this drought is the worst he’s experienced as a farmer in the last 30 years, and the lack of rain is not the only factor leading to the loss of trees.

“The temperature has been as much of a factor in my opinion as the lack of rain. The temperatures that we have reached were over 100 degrees for long periods of time,” he said.

Local consumers planning to purchase their Christmas trees from his farm won’t be impacted by much, according to Anderson. This is due to his relentless work behind the scenes to ensure that the holidays go as planned for those looking forward to celebrating it.

Sitting on 25 acres of land in Allen Parish, you can find thousands of Christmas trees. Anderson said at least 800 have been lost in these dry conditions.

While the drought has caused some farms to close, Anderson said they are doing everything they can to pull through.

“We have irrigation here on the farm, so there’s a lot of things we’ve been able to take care of. So that nursery gets first priority. About two days without water in the nursery and those plants would be history,” he said.

Anderson said the trees left haven’t suffered too much.

“We only have five hours about each day we can devote to watering the trees in the field because the nursery takes the water the rest of the time,” he said.

With the weather finally cooling some, he’s hopeful for some rain to refresh the trees. Even without that, he assures everyone there will be plenty of trees to choose from this holiday season.

“It’s been a really hard year, but we open up in two weeks with pumpkins for the fall season. We have a lot for people to do, the crop maze has not done well at all this year and the flowers should have been blooming by now, but we still have a lot to offer for people to come out and enjoy,” Anderson said.

A pumpkin patch event will be held at the firm next month where visitors will be able to pre-tag their Christmas trees for the upcoming holiday.