2.02.09 - Christmas trees


Gary Chastagner, United States


Bert Cregg, United States

Venche Talgø, Norway

About Unit

The scope of this unit includes all aspects of Christmas tree and greenery production including nutrition, genetics, propagation, diseases, arthropod pests, weeds, production techniques, post-harvest quality, and marketing.

While the indoor display of forest trees to celebrate Christmas is a centuries-old tradition, establishment and culture of plantations specifically for Christmas tree use is a relatively new development. During the last 20 to 30 years, as the worldwide consumption of real Christmas trees has risen to exceed 80 million annually, the science and technology behind plantation Christmas tree production has developed rapidly, particularly in Europe and North America. This unit provides a forum for the exchange of scientific research results among researchers, students, extension agents and extension specialist who work professionally with the Christmas tree industry. 

State of Knowledge

The scope of this unit encompasses the entire range of activities associated with Christmas tree and greenery production. A few selected topics of current interest include:

  • Utilization of mechanical and/or chemical treatments to produce high quality Christmas tree by controlling leader elongation,
  • Clonal production of Christmas trees via somatic embryogenesis,
  • Genetic selection and breeding for Christmas tree quality and resistance to specific pests,
  • Improvement of post-harvest needle retention,
  • Managing weeds with sub-lethal herbicide applications,
  • Assessing the impacts of intensive management of multiple rotations on productivity.