By Mary Dunks, Examiner.com
Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it’s finally time to deck the halls of your home. And no holiday decor is complete without the perfect focal point––the Christmas tree. You could grab an artificial tree from the local supermarket or swing by a tree lot to pick one out, but why not start a new tradition this year? Grab some travel mugs of hot cocoa, pack the car with family, friends and warm jackets, and head out of town for a little wintertime adventure at one of these great local tree farms. Some of Pennsylvania’s best tree farms can be found just an hour or so outside of downtown Philadelphia.
6320 Upper York Road
New Hope, PA 18938
Price: $59 All cut trees (cash, check, Visa & MasterCard)
Travel time: 60 minutes from Philadelphia
As one of the country’s oldest operating family tree farms, Tuckamony Farm knows Christmas trees. If you are looking for the all around best deal on your holiday pine or fir, this farm has it. All of the choose-and-cut trees on this 70 acre family-run farm are just $59, so you and your family can have fun exploring the land in search of the perfect tree for your home. You’ll also find fresh, handmade wreaths in an abundance of sizes and a holly orchard where you can choose bunches of holly for just $7.50. Available at Tuckamony Farm this year in sizes up to and over 9 feet tall: White Pine, Scots Pine, Norway, Blue Spruce, Douglas, Fraser, Concolor and Canaan.
Marsh Creek Tree Farm
301 Marsh Road
Elverson, PA 19520
Price: $8 per foot (cash or check)
Travel time: 63 minutes from Philadelphia
Looking for a lot of choices in your holiday tree? Marsh Creek Tree Farm can you provide you with more than 9,000 of them! Just show up at this Elverson, Pa. farm and an employee will be happy to greet you and provide you with a saw and a ride into the farm on the hayride. After you find the perfect tree and cut it down, the staff at Marsh Creek will get you and your tree back to the pick up point. There they will have your tree tied, shaked and baled while you and the family enjoy a cup of hot chocolate to shake off the chill. Available to choose-and-cut at Marsh Creek Farm this year: Douglas: up to 10 feet; Fraser: up to 7 feet; Canaan: up to 8 feet; Blue Spruce: up to 8 feet; Norway spruce: up to 8 feet
Located about 25 minutes north of Reading, Pa., Beck Tree Farms was established in 1977 and provides a wide variety of trees and services for your holiday enjoyment. The giant, welcoming red barn and friendly staff adds to the enjoyment you and your family will have hiking around the farm in search of the perfect holiday pine. The staff will shake clean, drill, and wrap your tree for free, plus the farm provides you with special “tree carts” so that you can easily transport your tree from wherever in the 30-acre forest you happen to cut it down. Don’t forget to visit the farm animals and get a free hot chocolate to warm up afterwards! Available this year at Beck Tree Farms: Fraser: 5 to 12 feet; Douglas: 5 to 13 feet; Canaan: 5 to 10 feet; Blue Spruce: 5 to 13 feet.
Looking to bring Rover with you to help hunt for the perfect tree? Leashed pets are welcome at Mulberry Hill, a Lehigh Valley farm that has been providing the area with fresh Christmas trees for more than two decades. If you just can’t find what you’re looking for at Mulberry’s original location, just drive a half mile up the road to peruse thousands of additional trees. Bring your own saw to cut your tree or ask an employee to cut one down for you. Later, they can drill the tree to fit the Stand Strait tree stand system. This method involves drilling a hole into the bottom of the trunk, allowing it to fit perfectly into the pin of the tree stand to prevent wobbly Christmas trees. Available this year at Mulberry Hill: Douglas: up to 12 feet; Norway: up to10 feet; Fraser: up to 10 feet; Blue Spruce: up to 8 feet; Serbian Spruce: up to 8 feet; Concolor: up to 7 feet, Balsam: up to 7 feet
Ruff’s Christmas Trees
263 Ranch Road
Schuylkill Haven, PA 17972
Price: $6 – $8 a foot (cash or check)
Travel time: 1 hour and 52 min from Philadelphia
An antique tractor hayride along a logging trail from the 18th century awaits you at Ruff’s. This tree farm has been harvesting trees since before WWII, and can be found amid the backdrop of the Appalachian Mountains. Ruff’s Christmas Trees will provide you with the saw to go find your ideal tree, then bag and tie it up for you. Then take to family to cozy up in the farm’s nice, warm barn complete with a fireplace where fresh hot coco and cookies can be enjoyed. Ruff’s also has precut Christmas trees, Christmas wreaths and boughs. Available this year at Ruff’s Christmas Trees: Trees up to 12 feet tall - Douglas, Concolor, Fraser, Canaan