Evergreen Trees Struggle in Drought Conditions
LINN COUNTY, Iowa – The drought has caused local evergreen tree farmers to lose most, if not all, of the trees they planted this spring.
“It’s just too hot,” said Mary Rose, Owner of Wagner’s Christmas Tree Farm off Highway 30 in Cedar Rapids. “They have to set that root system down in that first year.”
Rose says she’s already lost 300 saplings to the drought. "It's going to hurt everybody,” she said, “Our prices will go up on everything, groceries. Everything."
Dan Hoffman, owner of Hoffman Tree Farm in Marion, says he’s also pining for rainfall.
"If this lasts into August and September, it will effect multiple years,” Hoffman said. “I don't have irrigation at all, if we don't get rain, that's the way it goes."
It takes 10 years to produce a fully grown Evergreen. All 1,000 trees Hoffman planted this spring are already dead.
The two farmers say they will still have all of their adult trees and will be open for business this holiday season. They say is common for some of their young trees to die in drought conditions.
Both Hoffman and Rose have other sources of income outside of their farms, but they say it's still frustrating to watch something they care break under the sun.
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