The U.S. is importing more live holiday plants. That’s coming up on This Land of Ours.
Christmas trees and poinsettias are iconic symbols of the holiday season. While the vast majority are grown in the United States for domestic use, a small share of both plants comes from Canada, according to USDA’s Economic Research Service.
Trade is highly seasonal, with 99 percent of Christmas trees and 95 percent of poinsettias shipping between November and December. From 2000–15, live Christmas tree imports averaged around two million trees per year at an inflation-adjusted annual value of $36.1 million. However, by 2022, live tree imports reached nearly 2.8 million trees at a value of $68 million. Import values of live trees had previously spiked in 2020 because of COVID-19 supply chain issues, and prices have remained relatively high since.
In the early 2000s, the United States imported as many as 5.9 million live poinsettias per year before that number dipped to 1.2 million in 2011. In 2022, live poinsettia imports totaled 2.2 million plants worth $11.5 million.
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National Correspondent / AgNet Media, Inc.
Sabrina Halvorson is an award-winning journalist, broadcaster, and public speaker who specializes in agriculture. She is a native of California’s agriculture-rich Central Valley.