Dear Pea Ridge Forest Customer:
As Christmas tree season approaches, we have been blessed with a great growing season so far-timely rains, no torrential flooding, and moderate temperatures. These make for happy trees and happy growers.
We are again facing the same problem we have had in the past several years- a shortage of saleable trees in our fields. Our plan, as it has been for several years, is to supplement our field trees with trees from Michigan and the Carolinas. We set some of these trees out in our fields so you can walk through them and cut them just as you cut our field trees. We are not trying to deceive anyone- just trying to give our customers the experience of going to the field and choosing and cutting a tree. Unfortunately, trees are not your normal crop like corn and beans-we have to work on them for 8-10 years to get a saleable product, and then we are very dependent on what Mother Nature gives us to work with. If we had summers like this one, we could grow various varieties of Christmas trees and do it consistently-but the odds of that are slim to none. This is why we have to supplement our crop. We are trying our best to grow our own trees by increasing our planting numbers and experimenting with different types of trees and cultural practices. Most growers in this part of the country have similar problems. Different approaches have been employed, from closing early to supplementing trees from up north. We also have to mention here that we cannot be responsible nor guarantee the durability or freshness of your tree after it leaves our farm.
Our gift shop will be brimming full of Christmas items, gift ideas, wreaths, arrangements, ornaments, and more. Santa will be here on weekends along with a winery for sampling and sales and other seasonal vendors. We are working on some ideas for a few ‘fun’ things for the young ones to experience along with the ride to the fields.
Family here is surviving-LeRoy and Mary have had a few major problems this spring but are coming along. Grandchildren are a joy-all three are involved in volleyball, so that is fun. Jess-the oldest (18)-is a senior, Jenna (15) is a sophomore, and Jill (11) is in 6th grade. All are great students and a wonderful help on the farm. Tammy earned her Doctor of Nursing Practice this spring-she worked tremendously hard to accomplish this while having a full time job and raising three kids (well four counting husband Mike).
All of us at Pea Ridge look forward to opening the farm to our customers this Christmas season and know that we try our very best to make your visit a pleasant and memorable experience. As usual, we will open the weekend before Thanksgiving on a limited schedule-some of the vendors won’t be available.
Yours in trees, The Roods