Christmas tree shortage? Yes some areas may see evergreens in short supply

Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, but there might not be enough Christmas trees this holiday season.

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If you need to buy the centerpiece of your holiday décor, then be warned, vendors said they will have fewer trees this year, CNBC reported.

The reason is twofold — climate change and supply chain issues.

Some live tree retailers started taking reservations earlier this fall so people could guarantee their live tree would be ready and waiting for them, CBS News reported.

And don’t think you’ll be able to run to your closest store to get an artificial one if you strike out with a real tree.

Industry insiders said they too will be impacted because of supply and demand.

“The demand this year is going to be extremely strong and so I think from a consumer perspective people definitely shouldn’t wait,” Chris Butler, CEO of National Tree Company, a wholesaler of artificial trees, told CNBC.

“Consumers should buy now because by the time we get to Thanksgiving, which is a peak week for us, I think there’s going to be a lot of empty shelves. We’re seeing pretty strong growth right now already versus last year and so, I do think that we’re in for a big, big season this year,” Butler said.

When you do find a tree, expect to pay more this year.

Balsam Hill’s CEO, Mac Harman, said their artificial trees will cost about 20% more this year, CNN reported. But that won’t make up for how much the company is spending to get the trees transported. Balsam Hill’s costs for shipping containers have skyrocketed 300% this year, he said.

One place that may not see a shortage is in some parts of Ohio.

According to Spectrum News, one tree farm in Kingsville is preparing for a rush of people looking for the perfect tree.

Last month, Jeff Greig of Greig Christmas Tree Farm was tagging 15,000 trees that will eventually be cut down and sold.

“Out west, you know, especially in Oregon and Washington, you know, with the tremendous heat that they had out there they definitely had some problems. And those are huge farms out there. I mean places that are selling hundreds of thousands of trees a year wholesale,” Greig told Spectrum News. “We really don’t notice that east of the Mississippi as much because most of those trees are going to stay west of Mississippi. A lot of the trees that are cut by the big wholesalers east of the Mississippi are coming from Michigan, Pennsylvania and North Carolina and for the most part that weather has been alright.”