North Carolina is once again White House bound for Christmas. For the 10th time since 1966, when the tradition began, North Carolina will have the honor of presenting a REAL Christmas tree – a perfect Fraser fir – to the First Lady for display in the White House Blue Room. Christmas Tree Grower Joe Freeman & wife Linda will make their coveted journey to Washington the week after Thanksgiving with a tree from their Ashe county farm.
Joe & Linda won this honor by winning the Grand Champion title at the National Christmas Tree contest held in Portland Oregon in 2006. To be eligible to enter a tree at the National competition in Portland, Joe first won the North Carolina Christmas Tree Association state contest.
Joe currently grows Fraser fir Christmas Trees at Mistletoe Meadows, his 130 acre farm in Laurel Springs North Carolina, approximately 5 miles from the Blue Ridge parkway where he currently has approximately 100,000 trees planted. He also has additional tree farms in Virginia and in Moore county N.C. Wholesale customers include retailers, garden centers and fund raising groups. Joe owns and operates a retail lot in Asheboro N.C. during the retail selling season.
Mistletoe Meadows produces approximately 15,000 wreaths in 12 sizes each Christmas Season. Joe is a member of the North Carolina Christmas tree association, National Christmas Tree Association, Ashe County Christmas Tree Growers Association, Mt Rogers Christmas tree Growers Association, & Virginia Christmas Tree Growers Association.
Joe was the NCCTA Grand champion Wreath maker in 1992, 1994, 1996 & 2002. He grew the NCCTA Grand champion Tree in 2001. He also took top honors for the National grand champion Wreath in 1998 and 2004.
Members of the White House staff will visit Joe’s farm in October to hand pick this years selection. The tree will be cut in late November and transported to Washington D.C. for a formal presentation to First Lady Laura Bush. The tree will be decorated by the White house floral department staff and volunteers.