Today’s Topic: N.C. Fraser fir chosen as White House Christmas tree

by | Nov 13, 2012

Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”

Southern Farm Network logoFor the 12th time since 1966, North Carolina is supplying the Christmas tree for the White House. That’s the most for any state.

Russell and Beau Estes of Jefferson earned the right to provide the official 2012 White House Christmas Tree. The father-and-son team owns Peak Farms, and their tree was named grand champion in the National Christmas Tree Association‘s 2012 National Christmas Tree Contest, held this summer. White House staff visited the farm in October and chose a 19-foot-tall Fraser fir that will stand in the Blue Room of the White House. The tree will be loaded on Nov. 17 for its trip to Washington.

The Estes’ Fraser fir won’t be the only North Carolina tree heading north. Paul Smith, owner of Cool Springs Nursery in Banner Elk, was selected as the reserve champion. And traditionally, the reserve champion provides the Christmas tree for the vice president’s residence.

North Carolina ranks second nationally in Christmas tree income, behind Oregon. Last year, farm income from Christmas trees totaled $75 million in North Carolina. Christmas trees are an important part of North Carolina’s overall green industry. Christmas trees, greenhouse and nursery stock, and floriculture all combined to produce more than $709 million in farm income for N.C. growers in 2011.

Click below to listen to the Commissioner and Rhonda talk about N.C. Christmas trees. You can find Christmas tree farms by searching

[Audio:|titles=Today’s Topic for Nov. 13]

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