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‘Last Year Was Bad, This Year Is Horrible’: Christmas Tree Shortage Hits South Florida

Patrick Farrell
Miami Herald
Annabel Lopez and her husband, Joseph Lopez, with 1-year-old daughter Autumn and 4-year-old Avery, look for the perfect Christmas tree at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Miami lot on Friday, Nov. 23, 2018.

It may cost a little more this year to get into the holiday spirit. But don’t blame the Grinch; the U.S. is suffering from a national Christmas tree shortage.

Think of it as a hangover from the Great Recession. Even though it struck a full decade ago, the 2008 downturn and a concurrent glut of yuletide firs and spruces drove many growers out of business. The supply is now tight — and replenishing it takes time, since a tree grows eight to 10 years before it’s ready for the tree lot.

“Last year was bad; this year is horrible,” said Chris Winkler, 53, co-owner of Holiday Sale tent on SW 104th St. in Kendall, who has been selling Christmas trees with his family in Miami for more than 40 years. Normally Winkler and his three brothers operate four tree selling locations; this year they’re down to two.

And in keeping with the laws of supply and demand, fewer trees means higher prices.

“We don’t have the trees to fill four,” he said. “I’ve invested more money this year and I have less trees.”

Read more at our news partner, the Miami Herald

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