The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

December 12, 2008

Choosing the right Christmas tree

Many folks believe cutting down a live one is the only way

With only 12 days left until Christmas, time is running out to find that special tree.

Arthur Richmond, owner of the Richmond Tree Farm in Hinton, believes in the “old-fashioned way” of choosing a tree, and thinks that “everybody should cut down their own.”

Richmond is one of three live tree farm owners who weighed in on the rationalizations of why “real trees are better than those artificial things.”

Richmond, who doesn’t believe in artificial trees, encourages families to bring their kids out to his farm, where they can make a tradition out of choosing a tree.

Like most, after selecting a tree, Richmond allows his customers to cut the tree themselves or he will lend a hand and cut it down for them.

Art Yagel, 15-year owner and operator of Yagel Poor Farm in Craigsville, believes all families should consider cutting a fresh tree for Christmas.

“It’s an opportunity to get the family away from the in-house electronics and out into the air and sunshine. It’s a good experience,” said Yagel.

Yagel says the good thing about his farm’s choose-and-cut process is you are getting the “freshest and safest tree” possible.

“A fresh cut tree is better than one that’s been pre-cut weeks and months earlier because it’s going to retain needles and scents, and it will continue to drink water,” said Yagel.

And, he adds, a fresh cut tree will “make the whole house smell like Christmas.”

Yagel also encourages families to make a visit to his tree farm a tradition.

“It’s a great outing for a family to enjoy. Have fun and pick out the best tree you can possibly get for your money,” said Yagel.

“I think Christmas is artificial enough,” said Henry Bivens, owner of Crestwood Tree Farm, which is celebrating its 50th year this year.

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