ASHEVILLE, N.C. (AP) - Nearly a decade after the recession began, Christmas tree aficionados are feeling the pinch.
News outlets report a nationwide Christmas tree shortage is the result of farmers planting fewer trees when demand plummeted in 2008, or going out of business altogether. North Carolina is the nation's second-largest Christmas tree exporter, after Oregon, producing more than 20 percent of the country's supply.
North Carolina Christmas Tree Association Executive Director Jennifer Greene says there's a more limited supply of Fraser fir trees this year.
South Carolina Christmas Tree Association Secretary Steve Penland says growers have begun to plant more trees, but National Christmas Tree Association spokesman Doug Hundley says it takes around 10 years for trees to reach full height.
In the meantime, Hundley says, expect prices to increase.
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