(Durand, MI.) - About two-thirds of Christmas trees in the U.S. come from just two states, but Michigan is the next largest producer.
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, Oregon harvested 4.7 million Christmas trees last year while just over four million trees finding a home during the season came from North Carolina. Michigan ranked third, producing slightly more than 1.5 million Christmas trees in 2022.
Coming in at no. 11 is Indiana, with about 150,000 Christmas trees harvested last year.
Amy Start, Executive Director of the Michigan Christmas Tree Association, said the Great Lakes state ranks high because of its climate and having a lot of ground ideal for raising Christmas trees. Christmas trees grow best in soil that drains well from being hilly and containing a higher percentage of sand. Start spoke further, saying that the roots on Christmas trees are prone to rot if exposed to a high moisture content in the dirt.
“Christmas trees don’t like to have their roots wet. You’ll have to pick a different crop if you live in an area with good soil,” she said.
The largest Christmas tree-producing area in Michigan, and one of the leaders nationwide, is Missauke County, located in the northern Lower Peninsula of the state.
According to the USDA, more than a half million Christmas trees come out of Missauke County near Cadillac each year, while the nearby Wexford County harvests about 170,000 trees annually. Montcalm County, northeast of Grand Rapids, produces slightly more than 100,000 Christmas trees in a season while over 70,000 trees are harvested in Oceana County along the eastern shoreline of Lake Michigan near Ludington,
A decent amount of Christmas trees also come out of the southwest corner of Michigan, with the largest producer in that part of the state being Allegan County with more than 60,000 cut annually.
About 9,000 of the trees in Michigan come yearly from Berrien County.
“A lot of parts of our state have that kind of soil that just makes growing Christmas trees the perfect thing,” Start said.