Riverview Christmas trees doing well despite excessive heat

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — It may be July but one farmer in Canton has his sights set on Christmas. That’s because the blistering heat and humidity this past week isn’t good for Christmas trees.

Most of you probably aren’t thinking about winter this time of year but for Todd Gannon at Riverview, it’s his job.

“July is one of our busiest, hardest months. The heat we have to battle and it’s a ton of work. Every tree gets handled several times in July,” Gannon said.

Temps north of 90 are normally not good for the trees but thanks to massive amounts of rain, they’re doing well for now.

“They basically can start to burn and curl. Needles can turn brown and dry out,” Gannon said.

Another weather event affecting Riverview is the drought of 2012. It was so dry across the country that year that many farms nationwide will have fewer trees to sell this year.

“This is the 8th growing season since 2012 and all of the little trees that were planted in 2012 died. So supply is going to be tight across the nation, including here,” Gannon said.

This month, Gannon and his crew will trim the tops of 15,000 trees and sheer roughly 8,000. In the end, he expects to still have around 1,500 or more for families and their traditions this November. Riverview also features thousands of pumpkins for families to pick from in October.

“We should have that many trees ready to go but towards the end the selection is going to get a little tighter,” Gannon said.

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