Holiday Tree Farm Faves
Many folks put up a holiday tree just after Thanksgiving. Such a move ushers in the holiday season like no other. For some, this means a fake tree with lights included; just un-box, attach ornaments, plug-it-in and voilà! For others, getting a tree for the holidays means taking the whole family to a tree farm for a full morning of holiday, spirit-filled fun. Some even head up into the woods for a "wild" tree, but that experience requires a permit and isn't covered here. Selecting the "perfect tree" is somewhat of a personal art. Douglas Fir or Noble? How about a Fraser Fir? Trees range widely in price, mostly due to how tall and sparse the branches are. The sparser and sturdier the more expensive it seems. Alas, nobody wants their ornaments drooping... But hey, you're not really learning anything new here, unless you've blown in from a treeless city where having a live tree just hasn't been in the cards. Well, have faith, there are many wonderful trees on offer around the Portland/Vancouver area. See our top 6 tree farm picks below, followed by a bit more commentary and some tips on the whole experience. Good luck tree hunting!
Top 6 Tree Farms Around Portland/Vancouver
Most folks have their own favorite tree farm to hit at the holidays. That said, sometimes it's great to mix it up a bit...see what else is out there. To be sure, there are many, many different tree farms in the area. Here's a Google map link showing what I'm talking about. Yelp too has its own list...check it here. But alas, with so many options, and really, only one tree to get, how do you sift through the masses? You can read endless reviews, or ask a good friend or two...or...you can follow along here. To make things easy, I've picked one tree farm for the major areas of Portland/Vancouver. To be sure, some GREAT tree farms are missing from this list (there are so many). Yet the following locations are some of the best spots, in my humble opinion, having been born and raised in the area (circa 1969), visited MANY, and having read over one hundred plus reviews. Now go get yourself a tree! ;)
#1 - Quail Creek Ranch: NW Portland
A short drive from downtown Portland, out along Skyline Ridge, you'll find Quail Creek Ranch. This is a great place to find that special tree along with some fun-filled holiday extras including hay rides, a warming hut, hot chocolate and even a short waterfall hike! Doesn't get much better than this.
With over 20 acres of trees to choose from, variety is definitely on-hand at Quail Creek with Noble Firs, Douglas Firs, Grand Firs, Fraser Firs, Nordmann Firs, Turkish Firs, and Serbian Spruce. Trees range in size from table toppers to over 15’ tall. They have both hand-trimmed, shaped trees and naturals. They have over 20,000 trees to choose from, so you are sure to find the ideal choice for you and your friends and/or family.
Quail Creek also sells fresh wreaths, garland, mistletoe, and tree stands (which they will happily install for you). Also, don’t forget to check out their tree bags. If you want a real Christmas Tree without any tree needles on your floor – Quail's tree bags will do the job.
Quail Creek also provides free tree bailing, cutting, shaking, hauling, loading assistance, and restrooms! Their friendly staff will take care of all your needs and put you in the perfect holiday spirit – rain, snow or shine!
HOURS: Friday, Saturday and Sunday, 9am - 4:30pm
Also available all other days by appointment – Call and they will make arrangements for you to find your perfect tree on your schedule!
ADDRESS: 9949 NW Kaiser Road Portland, OR 97231
GIVE THEM A CALL: 503-629-5464 or 503-516-3445
#2 - Furrow Farm: Hillsboro, Or.
O.K., getting a bit further out west here for the masses in Beaverton and beyond. That said, Furrow Farm deserves driving to from anywhere in the region. This spot is most definitely a wonderful and holiday spirit-filled place to get your tree. Family-owned and run for three generations, Furrow Farm easily earns the #2 spot on this list, and could vie for #1. It's hard to describe how pretty it is at Furrow Farm.
At $6 a foot, Furrow Farm offers Noble Fir, Nordman Fir, Grand Fir, Balsam Fir and Douglas Fir ($20 any size). Fresh-cut and U-cut options are available (saws on-hand).
Tree baling ($2), bathrooms, free tractor rides, warming fires, free hot cocoa and candy canes fill things out. Free twine is also provided. But the real kicker here is that they allow dogs on the property! While they must be on a leash, PDX is a dog town for sure...so this is a great and worthy feature.
HOURS: Monday - Friday: 10 a.m. - dark Saturday & Sunday: 9 a.m.- dark
ADDRESS: 25877 NW West Union Rd. Hillsboro, OR. 97124
GIVE THEM A CALL: 503-647-5288
#3 - Thornton's Treeland - Vancouver, Wa.
Indeed, some very great things do come from "The Couv," "Vantucky," whatever you might call the land north of the Columbia River. Perhaps you are even from the area? That said, a hidden gem of a tree farm reside up there...and it has been my location of choice for 4 years running. Why? Thornton's Treeland has a great tree selection, a gorgeous country location and a friendly and very helpful staff. Hayrides, a warming lodge, hot cocoa and a petting zoo fill this place out for a great, overall experience. Plus, they provide tree shaking, bailing and tree stand drilling and placement.
In operation since 1970, the selection of trees at Thornton's is good with Douglas Fir, Noble Fir, Nordmann Fir, Fraser Fir and Grand Fir on-hand. These are some of the finest quality trees available. My personal favorite is the Fraser Fir...a very sparse, sturdy tree that holds ornaments well and keeps its color and life as long as you water it.
HOURS: Everday from 9 to 5 p.m.
ADDRESS: 7617 N.E. 119th Street Vancouver, Washington 98662
GIVE THEM A CALL: (360) 573-TREE or (360) 573-8733
#4 - Sunny Day Tree Farm: Sherwood, Or.
Unless you're the instant tree type, and you're probably not if you're reading this far down in this post, then the Sunny Day Tree Farm might be perfect for you. Complete with a gorgeous drive into the hills around Sherwood, Oregon (about 30 minutes outside of Portland), Sunny Day is a great, family-owned and operated tree farm off the beaten path. In fact, if you go on a weekday, you might even get the place to yourself!
After reading multiple, great reviews on Yelp about Sunny Day, I knew it needed to be on this list. Perched on 80 hilltop acres in Sherwood, Oregon, the Sunny Day Tree Farm offers incredible views of the Willamette Valley wine country. Hosted by Jon and Su Schatz (pictured above), a family atmosphere pervades.
Sunny Day Tree Farm offers a great selection of Turkish Fir, Nordmann Fir and limited Noble Fir Christmas trees. They make picking your own Christmas tree a fun day for the entire family. Unlike most tree farms where you pay by the foot, all of their trees are the same price...just $40 for U-Cut or $45 for pre-cut!
Sit and cozy up at the wood stove in their new, state-of-the-art tree barn! This is a very kid-friendly place!
HOURS: Open every day 9am - 7pm
ADDRESS: 25100 SW Neill Rd. Sherwood, Oregon 97140
GIVE THEM A CALL: Home/Farm: 503-628-1017 Su’s Cell phone: 503-860-1562 Jon’s Cell Phone: 503-349-1600
#5 - Knapp Farms: Sandy, Or.
While lacking a few of the bells and whistles such as hay rides and petting zoos, Knapp Farms is an excellent choice on the far east side for a holiday tree. With competitive prices and a friendly staff, they'll even cut your tree for you! Of course, free saws are on-hand for those that want to do it themselves. Free hot drinks and a tree hauling tractor makes getting your cut tree back to your car so much easier. Tree shaking and bailing are also on-hand to keep things clean and easy to take home.
HOURS: Open Every Friday, Saturday & Sunday 9:00 AM until Dark
ADDRESS: 41160 SE Hwy 26 Sandy, Oregon 97055
GIVE THEM A CALL: (503) 668-9613
#6 - Lee Farms, Tualatin, Or.
This tree farm list wouldn't be complete without a reference to Lee Farms. Also a great location for Halloween fun, Lee Farms has an excellent selection of Christmas trees at a place filled with spirit.
Offering Noble’s, Nordman’s & Fraser Firs, as well as Grand and Douglas Firs, the selection at Lee's is good. Yet what sets Lee Farm's apart is their free tree cutting (after you select it), shaking, bailing and loading. They make getting a "real" tree very easy. So, for those less handy with a saw, Lee's is a great location. Plus, it's gorgeous out at Lee Farms in the Tualatin hill country.
HOURS: Open every day 9:00 AM to 5 PM
ADDRESS: 21975 SW 65th Ave. Tualatin, OR 97062
GIVE THEM A CALL: (503) 638-1869
Well, you've picked a tree farm to go visit. Great! Yet what's next? Well, after arriving and scouring the fields for the perfect specimen, you may have to saw it down (although many locations will do this for you). All tree farms provide saws, but this task will prove more difficult for some. Bring gloves! Next comes getting the tree shaken, bailed, loaded and paid for. You may also need a tree stand, and most places will drill a hole in the bottom of the tree and fit the stand in for you on-site. That's a great help! Now you just have to get it home, decorate and the holiday season is truly on. Of course, as noted in the tree farm recommendations above, some locations offer much more than just trees. From hot chocolate to hay rides, maybe even a petting zoo or a small hike, the list of fun holiday extras looms large. Great family and friend memories are made in these spaces. Enjoy!