Needle moving higher on Christmas tree prices in Georgia

Published: Nov. 24, 2022 at 10:54 AM EST
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AUGUSTA, Ga. - Millions of families are starting the search for a Christmas tree during the holiday weekend, but shoppers in the two-state region may have to pay more.

If you’re looking for an artificial tree, the supply is good, unlike last year when delays from manufacturers help up some deliveries until after the holidays.

But it’s a different story with real trees.

Chris Butler, CEO of the National Tree Co., puts it this way:

“We probably have the tightest supply we’ve had the last several years.”

And that means higher prices.


Those who want a real tree will likely pay more because of inflation.  A survey showed wholesale prices increasing 5 to 15 percent.

Some Georgia tree sellers say consumers will feel a bigger hit.

Rob Dillon, who runs a Christmas tree lot in Buckhead, said the average tree will cost 30 to 40 percent more than last year.

Another vendor said they raised their prices at least $20 to $40 per tree.

A day before Thanksgiving, Dillon was already selling out of his medium-size trees.

“The most popular tree sizes have been the most difficult to come by,” said Dillon.

“Maybe this is the year to try out a smaller Christmas tree,” Dillon suggested.

Dillon said there’s a shortage of 8- to 10-foot trees across the Southeast.

“Bottom line is people quit putting Christmas trees in the ground,” said Dillon, adding that after the recession in 2008, the Christmas tree industry suffered and growers stopped planting Fraser firs in the mountains of western North Carolina.

“We’re now feeling the dip in production that happens when those trees didn’t get planted,” Dillon said.

He expects the supply of medium-size trees to level off in the next few years as more trees grow to that prime level.

However, at least for this year, he warned customers that it may smart to buy earlier than usual this holiday season for the best chance to get the size you want.

“I’m seeing a lot of sticker shock,” he said.

From reports by WANF and CBS News