MIDDLEBURG, Fla. — Whether the tree is big and tall or short and wide, Mike Songer believes there is a Christmas tree for any family.
He admits, he'll have a few "ugly" trees on his farm, but his customers will claim it as their 'Charlie Brown Tree'. Songer's Tree Farm has been around for nearly 40 years and at this point, his job is not considered work but a way of life.
"You don't know how long I've got, so I try to enjoy it every day," Songer said.
He especially enjoys the day after Thanksgiving, also known as opening day. The tree farmer said his customers line up outside his farm. At Songer's, people have the chance to cut down their own tree.
He told First Coast News more than 50 trees were sold Friday. Songer has sold hundreds, if not, thousands of trees at his farm. While he is not worried about inventory prices, Songer is expected to sell out.
"Christmas trees across the country go in cycles. There are some years with excess trees and some years a shortage of trees," Songer explained. "This year and last year has definitely been a shortage."
Fortunately, Songer's trees are planted on his Middleburg property. That means he has plenty of trees. He is, however, seeing a different kind of shortage.
"Many of the people who had Christmas tree farms have gotten old and kids can't leave high school and go out and buy a farm," Songer said.
The tree farmer said there aren't as many family-owned tree farms in Florida as there used to be.
According to the American Tree Farm System there are approximately 1,200 certified Tree Farms in Florida.
For now, Songer continues to plant his roots in a community that has supported his family business over the years.