BLUE SPRINGS — Obviously, the holiday season is the busiest time of year at Pinecrest Tree Farm.
But Gary Trump doesn't mind it — he likes the hustle and bustle of cutting, shaking and baling trees for Sunland-area customers.
"It's better than sitting inside and doing taxes," joked Trump, who runs the farm along with wife Cherri.
The Blue Springs tree farm just off U.S. Highway 77 sells Christmas trees and handmade wreathes, starting in late Sept. up until the last few days before Christmas.
Trump said they will sell up to 1,500 wreathes and hundreds of swags and centerpieces leading up to Thanksgiving. Last year, the farm sold around 1,200 trees and 800 decorative pieces during the holiday season, not counting the hundreds of wreaths made for fundraisers and other events throughout the year.
"We've got a good year as far as sales; it's just battling the weather," Trump said.
Picking out the perfect Christmas tree starts in the farm's 40-acre field, where hundreds of white pines and scotch pines are planted.
When you think you've found the right one, you mark the tree with a tag near the bottom. Then, Pinecrest employees will cut the tree and run it through a shaker to remove excess needles. The trees are then ready to be picked up, with a baler wrapping the tree so they can be stowed easily on top of a vehicle or in a pick-up bed.
Trees are priced on size, with each foot of tree fetching around $6. That's about $40-45 for a 7-foot tree.
The farm also sells other kinds of trees, likes firs, shipped from a farm in Michigan that are priced a little higher.
Trump said the farm — one of the only in the region — attracts customers from all around the area.
"Back when we kept checks — you know most people wrote checks before credit cards — we had 101 different cities and five states on the checks," Trump said. "We get a lot of business from Kansas because there's no tree farms down that way."
He hopes this year will see similar sales to last year.
"It's always hard to tell; the weather hasn't been the best," Trump said. "Last year was perfect — 70 degrees, no rain. This year has been the opposite."
Pinecrest Tree Farm is located at 503 S. Walnut St. in Blue Springs and is open every day from 9 a.m. until dark through Dec. 21.