Tennessee Christmas Tree Growers and Ag Department Help Haslam “App”ly His Commitment to Local Products for Holidays
NASHVILLE – The eight local Christmas trees Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and First Lady Crissy Haslam will display at the State Capitol and the Tennessee Residence will be adorned with slightly more than ornaments this year.
Donated from tree farms across the state, the six trees at the Tennessee Residence and two at the Capitol will have a mobile phone “quick response,” or “QR,” bar code displayed with the trees, linking many smartphone users directly to the Pick Tennessee Products Christmas tree directory.
The Tennessee Department of Agriculture created the bar codes so Tennesseans only have to point their phone’s camera at the bar code to launch an application giving instant information about local tree farms.
“Choosing locally grown products is one way everyone can join the effort to strengthen our rural economies,” Haslam said. “It’s a great way for us to help each other, and that’s something we all think about during this time of year.”
Pick Tennessee Products is the state’s promotional campaign to connect consumers with local farm products. Through the website, visitors can access directories, seasonal recipes and find local artisan products from wines and cheeses to aged hams and local honey. The site’s Taste of Tennessee Online Store provides links to numerous Tennessee produced or processed products popular during the holidays.
Christmas tree farms grow a completely renewable and recyclable resource which is 100 percent biodegradable. While growing, natural Christmas trees absorb carbon dioxide and other gases and emit fresh oxygen. Christmas trees are often grown on soil that doesn't support other crops, and their root systems serve to stabilize soil, protect water quality and provide refuge for wildlife. Grown on farms just like any other crop, one to three new seedlings are planted for every tree harvested to ensure a constant supply.
After the holidays, cut trees can be turned into mulch for area trails, and live trees can be replanted. Buying a live tree from a nearby farm guarantees that variety grows well in the area, and farmers are happy to share tips on planting and care for a transplanted tree. Always call ahead and confirm hours of operation and activities.
For more information about locally grown and processed products, visit www.picktnproducts.org or follow on Twitter or Facebook @PickTnProducts.