’Tis the sea­son - Noth­ing says Christ­mas more than the tree

The Standard Journal - - LOCAL - By Doug Walker [email protected]

The only thing more ex­cit­ing for chil­dren than wak­ing up on Christ­mas morn­ing may be the day when the kids help mom and dad pick out their Christ­mas tree.

Holli Le­fevers, 8, and her sib­lings John, 11, and Vi­o­let, 13, were all smiles while walk­ing with their par­ents among the Fraser firs at Christ­mas Tree City in front of State Mu­tual Sta­dium last week ahead of the Thanks­giv­ing hol­i­day.

Christ­mas Tree City con­tin­ues as a fix­ture in Rome for the past 41 years. Guy Rut­land started the sea­sonal busi­ness in 1977 and has pretty much turned things over to his son, Judd, and grand­son Sam to carry on.

They have been buy­ing their trees from the same farm in Cashiers, N.C., the whole time.

Over at Laven­der Moun­tain Hard­ware and Gar­den in Ar­muchee, Fraser firs have al­ready trans­formed the gar­den cen­ter into a mini-for­est. Cus­tomers have been re­serv­ing trees for sev­eral months and many of the larger trees were presold. Spencer and Vir­ginia Brewer have been buy­ing their Christ­mas trees from the same fam­ily farm in North Carolina for the past 19 years.

The trees are cut in North Carolina just a few days be­fore they’re de­liv­ered to Laven­der Moun­tain so that they are as fresh as pos­si­ble.

“It is quite a process un­pack­ing over 180 trees, and Christ­mas (com­ing) ear­lier and ear­lier,” Vir­ginia Brewer said.

The Brewer’s put the trees in wa­ter as soon as they are de­liv­ered to main­tain as high a level of fresh­ness as pos­si­ble.

The trees range from six-feet tall to 16-feet tall. De­liv­ery and set-up ser­vices are also avail­able for trees that are 10-feet tall and larger.

In ad­di­tion, the gar­den cen­ter staff has made over a hun­dred red vel­vet bows and started fill­ing or­ders for hand­made Fraser fir wreaths.

Jim Mor­ri­son is once again rent­ing Christ­mas trees from Cot­ton Block Pick­ers on East First Street. He got the idea for rent­ing live trees from an episode of TV’s Shark Tank and this marks the third year of his C & M Christ­mas Tree Rental busi­ness.

He gets his live trees from a farm on Sig­nal Moun­tain in Ten­nessee. Hem­lock, spruce and pine are avail­able and peo­ple can not only rent the trees, they can pur­chase them out­right and plant them af­ter the hol­i­days. If they choose not to plant, they just call Mor­ri­son and he’ll pick them up, re­plant them at his prop­erty and then pull them up next year.

Wed­nes­day Mor­ri­son had five trees left but said he can get more al­most at a mo­ment’s no­tice.

“I just take or­ders and when I run out all I have to do is call the farm and they’ll dig me what­ever I want,” Mor­ri­son said. “I don’t try to keep too many un­til peo­ple start call­ing and telling me they want a tree de­liv­ered.”

Fam­i­lies that en­joy cut­ting their own tree can visit the Sil­ver Creek Christ­mas Tree Farm on Rock­mart High­way’s Spur 101. The farm of­fers white pines, Ley­land and Mur­ray cy­press trees, and pre-cut North Carolina Fraser firs from six to twelve feet tall.

/ Doug Walker

Holli (from left) John and Vi­o­let Le­fevers look over a tree at Christ­mas Tree City near State Mu­tual Sta­dium

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