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What do Christmas tree growers do during the off-season?

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Cassens Christmas Tree Farm

TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) — With Christmas only a few weeks away, the off-season will soon be here for Christmas tree growers.

Right now Cassens Trees in West Lafayette is still open for the season.

"It can be a lot of fun with all the kids and people coming out and just being around happy people,” said Co-Owner of Cassens Trees, Dan Cassens. “They’re having a good time finding their Christmas tree, so that's kind of rewarding to see.”

Cassens farm includes a few different types of Christmas trees including fir, Scotch pine and White pine.

 "A lot of people don't appreciate what goes into making these trees what they are,” said Cassens. "We spend a lot of time in the off-season taking care of them and it’s pretty much full-time and more during the season selling the trees."

Cassens says there’s a lot of work to do to maintain the Christmas tree farm. Even when the off-season comes after the holidays, their work on the farm does not slow down much.

Right now, the family is already preparing for next year.

"The first step is obviously to get the trees planted,” said Cassens. “That happens in about March or April, so you've got to get your stock planted and you have to be able to purchase it.”

Once your seeds are bought and planted, Cassens says there’s still plenty of work to do.

“Probably about a couple of weeks later or a few weeks later, fertilization,” said Cassens. “These fir trees demand a lot of fertilization."

The Cassens are always mowing their property and limiting the amount of weeds they have.

Last year Cassens Trees placed 1st at the Indiana State Fair with a Christmas tree from their farm.

Because of that, they were able to place on of their trees in the Governor’s Office for Christmas.

This year was a similar situation for them.

"We didn't place first, but we placed second,” said Cassens. “So we got to put one in the residence."

Over the past few years Cassens has seen an increase in the amount of people wanting tall trees.

He said the supply of trees at their farm is unique.

"I think it's probably the fir trees and the size of these trees that sets us apart,” said Cassens. “I refused to cut everything when there was such a demand a year or two ago to hold back to get those taller trees and I kind of enjoyed doing that."

No matter what time of tree you purchase, or the size of it, Cassens said every tree that leaves their farm will have a fresh cut

"About an inch of wood we take off so there's a fresh cut,” said Cassens. “If you don't do that, and you let  the tree set  for more  than about four hours, it seals over.”

Once the tree seals over, it’s unable to absorb water. Cassens said in order for your tree to stay healthy, it needs to be cut at the base.

If you would like to visit Cassens Trees, click here.

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