Non-drop shop: Christmas tree farmer prepares for seasonal rush

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COLCHESTER, England (Reuters) - With Christmas around the corner, Wick Farm in Colchester, eastern England, is gearing up by harvesting its crop of fir trees.

Farmer Guy French said selling directly to customers is one of the best parts of the festive season.

“You can’t remember what you had last Christmas, but you always remember getting your Christmas tree,” he told Reuters.

“So we always make it the experience to get the Christmas tree direct from us, the farmer.”

The British Christmas Tree Growers Association says around seven million trees are bought each year in Britain.

French said this year’s crop of Nordmann Firs, which cater for 95 percent of Wick Farm’s market base, is made up of seven-year-old trees.

They are popular because their soft-needles are “non-drop”, though French said that unlike the more traditional Norway Spruce, they lack the classic “Christmassy” smell.

Reporting by Gerhard Mey, writing by Helena Williams and Alistair Smout; editing by Stephen Addison