Digging up small trees from our transplant beds for spring planting
Spring planting with Ben driving and Mike in the planter.
Baling harvested trees keeps us warm and the trees fresh
A young admirer checking out one of our champion trees
Mountain Star Farms grows Christmas trees on eight separate farms in northern New Hampshire's scenic and rugged White Mountains. We have over 130,000 trees growing on 150 acres of owned and leased land. The main farm is located right on NH Route 112 in Swiftwater, NH at the western end of the beautiful Kancamagus Highway. The farm has lovely old stone walls, an historic cottage, a large barn and a fabulous two-state view of the White Mountains and the Connecticut River Valley.
Owner Mike Garvan has been cultivating trees on the farms since 1982. His partner and farm manager Ben Hoyt has been overseeing farm operations for 25 years. The trees are planted in rows and carefully nurtured throughout the 7-10 years it takes to grow a 7-foot fir tree. Farm soils are tested and a fertilizer blend is mixed and applied to bring the soil to optimum levels for tree development. Trees are fertilized twice a year to produce vigorous, healthy Christmas trees with excellent color and needle retention.
Mike Winslow shearing a Balsam fir.
Every summer from the time they reach 3 feet in height, the trees are shaped (sheared) to correct any growing problems and to control growth so that the tree at harvest is full, dense and has a pleasing cone shape. The trees are sheared by hand using a special knife and hand pruners. The year of harvest, the tree is sheared lightly so that the tree has a soft, natural look and plenty of branch tips to decorate with your favorite ornaments.
The weeds between the rows of trees are controlled by mowing several times a year. This reduces the competition for sunlight water and nutrients and allows the trees to grow quicker and healthier. Weeds, insects and disease are minimized through the use of integrated crop management techniques.
Once the trees have been sheared, the ones which are ready are individually graded, sized and tagged for the wholesale harvest. The harvest begins in November after we have had several hard frosts which set the needles tightly on the branches. The trees are cut and then immediately twine-baled to preserve their freshness and to protect the tree branches during handling and shipping to market. The wholesale trees are loaded onto trucks of various sizes and shipped all over the Northeast.
Mail order Christmas trees are specially selected and tagged; they are harvested as orders are received, baled and shipped in wax-lined cartons to your doorstep anywhere in the Continental U.S.
Customers can come visit the farm anytime to tag the tree they want to harvest. We open for the cut-your-own harvest on the day after Thanksgiving. We enjoy having visitors at the farm and the area has a lot of sights and activities to offer our guests.
If you have any questions about the Christmas tree farm, just e-mail us at info@MtnStarFarms.com or call us toll-free at 1-888-567-2981 and Mike or Ben will get right back to you.
Mountain Star Farms
303 Wild Ammonoosuc Road
Woodsville, NH 03785
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