Sites -- Christmas Trees

Christmas Trees Sites in Kansas Sites in Oregon Washington DC

Below are photos taken from three different locations within 15 miles of our home. One location is our our "back yard." Enjoy !!

Garrick Waalkes (Assistant Production Manager/Transportation) at the Kirk Company (tree farm) indicated that his objective was to get the "Real Christmas Trees" back into the Home.

Mr. Waalkes contact information:
P.O. Box 547, Beavercreek, OR 97004
Email Garrick
The Kirk Company, Inc.

We thank Garrick Waalkes for letting us take pictures while they work.

Christmas tree farming is one of the major agricultural industries in Oregon. Over 60,000 acres are devoted to this type of farming making Oregon the country's largest producer of Christmas trees. There are about 2,000 trees planted per acre and it takes about 6 - 10 years to get a mature tree. Farms are as large as 10,000 acres or as small as 4 or 5 acres and all receive the same intensive cultural care.

The trees are harvested when they are about 6 - 7 feet tall and for every tree harvested, 2 - 3 new seedlings are planted.

Trees Abbey 01 Mature trees are harvested using a modified "tree saw" with a horizontal, circular saw blade that cuts the trunk about 1 - 2 inches above the ground level.

To the Left is our neighbor holding the "tree saw".

To the Right is a photo of a Christmas Tree's trunk stump. Christmas trees 053

trees school 01 The harvested trees are stacked prior to further treatment. The trunk is placed in a high speed vibrator to remove all the dead needles and resident spiders.

The tree is then placed into a baler that presses the branches against the trunk and comes out the other side tied tightly to the trunk. This protects the tree and makes it easier to handle for shipping.

trees school 03
Above is a photo of the balers and the processing of the Christmas trees.

Christmas trees 045 Christmas Trees 047

Trees Abbey 06

The wrapped trees are stacked manually to await further handling.
>>> Click <<<
on Thumbnails to see the larger photo.
Kirk 02 kirk 04

School 07

To speed the process some large growers use helicopters to pick up slings in groups of 10 trees; which is the maximum load weight for the helicopters.

school 09

The helicopter then transports the trees to a stagiing area. The pilot releases the load and returns to the field to repeat the process.

abbey 08 abbey 09 kirk 06

In smaller operations where the use of a helicopter is not cost effective, (cost is about $400.00/hour) the trees are loaded onto a flat-bed trailer and hauled from the field by a farm tractor. They are then stacked centrally and using a conveyer belt the trees are loaded onto trucks for shipment to market. As many as 800 baled trees can be loaded on a big tractor trailer.

The above photos are thumbnails >>> click <<< on them for a larger view.

shearing knife 03 shearign knife 11

The Christmas tree shape that we have come to know is not achieved naturally. At least once a year the trees are "sheared" using the knife shown above.