Once it hits December of every year it is safe to say that Nebraska is in full swing of the holiday season. With Christmas Eve, Christmas, New Year’s Eve and many other national holidays that people can celebrate, it is clear that everybody is in the mood to spread the joy and cheer of the holiday season.

Taylor Ruwe1Many families in Nebraska choose to celebrate the holidays by decorating their homes with lights and setting up illuminated objects to go with the holidays that they are celebrating. There are so many ways to decorate outside and inside your home, that I can bet you will never see any one house with the same exact set up as another.

At my home, in Hooper, NE, we celebrate by decorating a Christmas tree. We decorate it as a family with all of the lights, ornaments, tinsel, and garland. Then, once we are all done jazzing it up, we top it off with a star. It is my favorite holiday tradition.

Putting up Christmas trees is a very common way to celebrate the holidays. In Nebraska there are over 50 Christmas tree farms to find the perfect size and fit for you holiday celebration. Christmas tree farms are commonly 3-8 acres in Nebraska and have varieties of up to 8 different kinds of tree. The Nebraska Christmas Tree Growers Association (NCTGA) is an awesome resource for finding the best place to find your tree! It also gives you details on the different trees, farms, and the association as a whole!

Here are some final tips about having a real Christmas tree during the Holidays:

  • Locally grown trees are your freshest option! Not only are they quality trees and close to home, but buying these trees helps your local economy!
  • Find out if the tree is local or shipped in! Local trees are always more likely to be fresher.
  • Know how fresh your tree is. The fresher the better! To find out about the freshness of you tree you can stroke the branches. If the needles begin to fall off or can be gently pulled off of the tree, it is not fresh.
  • Another way to tell is by the needles. If you break a couple in your hand, they should feel gooey, sticky, maybe even wet in your hands. Once they are broken, they should release a recognizable smell.
  • Make sure the tree has a natural green look to it. It is possible that the tree was sprayed with non-harmful paint that will make the tree appear fresher than it is.
  • You don’t have to go to a Christmas tree farm to get your perfect real-life tree. My family usually gets ours from Menards. You can also find a tree lot to pick out your tree.

Taylor Ruwe2Christmas trees are a fun easy way to celebrate the holidays. Nebraska is home to many Christmas tree farms that are full of trees and family fun, to help celebrate all the important holidays in the people of Nebraska’s lives. It is important to find good resources to know when these Christmas tree farms start opening up and allowing people to pick out their special tree. For information like that you can visit: nda.nebraska.gov/publications/promotion/christmas_trees/trees.html and even your local extension office for any questions that you may have! Happy Holidays!

Taylor Ruwe is involved in growing crops on her family farm and is a member of her local FFA chapter. She participates on both the livestock and dairy judging teams. After graduation, Taylor plans to study agricultural business in collage and make connections all over the agricultural industry.