Drought, grubs plaguing Christmas present - WNEM TV 5

Drought, grubs plaguing Christmas present

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MIDLAND COUNTY, MI (WNEM) -

Grubs and drought playing the role of Ebenezer Scrooge at the Doumel Tree Farm.

Owner Doug Cook said about six or nine years ago a dry spell coupled with bug problems decimated their pine tree crop which caused a shortage they're dealing with this season.

Now, customers can’t cut down their own Christmas tree.

"That was really tough. Knowing that we would lose some sales this year and some memories to people was difficult," Cook said.

Even though you can't cut down your own tree there are still plenty of reasons to come out and pay this place a visit.

"We do our wagon rides on the weekend," Cook said. "We have horse drawn carriage rides. We have a warming barn with refreshments. Toy trains out here, a lot of people like to come out and see that every year."

Cook also said he has plenty of fresh cut trees on hand. Anywhere from seven to ten days old. Cheryl Owen stopped by to pick one up.

"I think there's a good variety and Doug and the guys here are always very helpful and they come out and walk around with us," Owen said. "And I like the big fat trees so they always seem to find the right one for us."

And like Santa Claus, the holiday season will return in 2016, bringing with it the chance to cut down your own tree at this farm again.

"Although it was really tough to have some people's Christmases not the best to not be able to cut their own tree this year, if you can look around me next year we've got a beautiful crop of Fraser fir and blue spruce in another field that will be ready to go for our customers coming up next year and in the years to come," Cook said.

Each year, 30 percent of retail sales on the farm come from "cut your own" trees.

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