Annalis Schutzmann and her granddaughter, Annalise Davis, 13, both of Sequim, cut their own Christmas tree at Lazy J Tree Farm east of Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Annalis Schutzmann and her granddaughter, Annalise Davis, 13, both of Sequim, cut their own Christmas tree at Lazy J Tree Farm east of Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Peninsula families can hunt for the perfect u-cut Christmas tree

National forest, businesses, allow people to harvest their own

PORT ANGELES — Generations of families on the North Olympic Peninsula have made the search for the perfect u-cut Christmas tree part of their holiday tradition.

Lazy J Tree Farm between Port Angeles and Sequim continues to sell a variety of u-cut Christmas trees at 225 Gehrke Road.

“Families have a rich experience finding a tree in all kinds of weather,” said Ann Johnson, who owns and operates Lazy J Tree Farm with her husband, Steve Johnson. “After which they warm up around the big bonfire with a hot cup of cider.”

“Fun pictures can be taken with a large lighted nativity scene and several painted holiday backgrounds,” she added. “The farm store is filled with wonderful Christmas items to purchase, too.”

Lazy J is open daily from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. until Christmas Day.

U-cut, or choose-and-cut, Christmas trees cost $8 per foot, sales tax included. Handsaws and twine are provided for cutting and securing trees to vehicles. A crew is available to assist those who need help.

Lazy J has Douglas fir, noble fir, Turkish fir, grand fir and Nordman fir on its 40-acre, 59-year-old tree farm.

“I’m low on noble fir, but I have a few,” Steve Johnson said in a Wednesday telephone interview.

“The Douglas fir seems to be pretty popular.”

Christmas trees take eight to 10 years to grow into the popular 5- to 8-foot height range.

Lazy J will have a shortage of certain sizes in the next two years while young trees in the baby fields grow, Ann Johnson said in a Wednesday email.

“This year has been a good year for our u-cut customers,” Ann Johnson said.

“Very beautiful full trees are easy to find. Smaller trees are a bit harder to find.”

In addition to Christmas trees, Lazy J is stocked with gifts and ornaments from around the world, organic apples, potatoes, garlic, apple cider and local honey.

Fresh-cut greenery and boughs are available for $1 per pound. Hand-crafted wreaths and swags are available for $20 to $80, Johnson said.

Deer Park Tree Farm at 4227 Deer Park Road has been selling u-cut Christmas trees since 1996.

Repeated attempts to reach the farm by phone Wednesday were unsuccessful.

According to its Facebook page, Deer Park Tree Farm is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

“Bring the family out for a great time picking the perfect tree for your festivity!” the Deer Park Tree Farm Facebook page said.

Adventure-seeking families can also find a Christmas tree growing in Olympic National Forest.

Olympic National Forest Christmas tree permits cost $5 each and can be purchased at the following North Olympic Peninsula locations:

• Pacific Ranger District-Forks, 437 Tillicum Lane. Open 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Closed for lunch; 360-374-6522.

• Hood Canal Ranger District-Quilcene, 295142 U.S. Highway 101. Open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays; 360-765-2200.

Fourth-graders are eligible for one free Olympic National Forest tree permit through the Every Kid in a Park initiative.

An informational video on cutting a Christmas tree in the federal forest is available on the Olympic National Forest website, www.fs.usda.gov/olympic.

Click on “Passes and Permits” and “Forest Products Permits.”

For tips on caring for a freshly-cut Christmas tree, visit the Lazy J Tree Farm website, www.lazyjtreefarm.com.

________

Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].

Annalis Schutzmann and her granddaughter, Annalise Davis, 13, both of Sequim, carry a freshly cut Christmas tree at Lazy J Tree Farm east of Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

Annalis Schutzmann and her granddaughter, Annalise Davis, 13, both of Sequim, carry a freshly cut Christmas tree at Lazy J Tree Farm east of Port Angeles. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)

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