LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Whether you opt for a live or artificial Christmas tree this year, you may not want to put off getting your tree. And while the reasons for the shortages are different, the results are the same. There are fewer trees for sale — live or artificial — and they will cost more money.
It’s estimated three out of four households put up a Christmas tree and many will likely start that tradition in the coming week as Americans celebrate Thanksgiving.
“In 2021, we’re seeing a variety of trends influencing artificial and live Christmas tree supply across the country, and are encouraging consumers to find their tree early this year to avoid shortage impacts,” said Jami Warner, American Christmas Tree Association.
Most tree lots will open around the Las Vegas valley right after Thanksgiving but be prepared to pay more for a live tree than you did last year. According to a 2021 USDA report, the cost of a live tree this year is nearly double what it cost in 2015.
Last year, during the midst of the pandemic, there was a heavy demand for live trees and tree farmers sold more than they normally would have, depleting their stock. It takes seven to 15 years for a Christmas tree to grow to the proper height in order to be sold.
In addition, extreme weather across the nation has resulted in lower crop yields.
“Unprecedented weather events in the Pacific Northwest and Midwest, including fires, drought, and heatwaves, have impacted live Christmas tree crop yields, with some Oregon farmers reporting losing up to 90% of their crop this summer,” reports the ACTA.
The reason for the shortage of artificial trees has to do with supply chain disruptions. Most artificial trees are made in China. As shipments get clogged up in ports, it increases delivery times. Order your tree earlier, rather than later.
Consumers can expect to see a 25% increase for artificial trees.