By Rachel Wulff

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Trimming the tree early? You aren’t alone. It seems like everyone wants to brighten their home, but finding a tree is almost like seeing Santa.

“They’re going really really fast this year,” said Greg Howes.

The Plant Foundry on Broadway in Sacramento is scrambling to find more Christmas trees.

“We’re hoping to get 50 more in this week,” said Howes.

When doors opened Friday morning several hundred trees were on the lot, then one by one, hour by hour, trees disappeared. By Saturday three-quarters of the inventory was gone.

The same thing is happening at stores across our area. Growers say the issue stems back to the recession when many closed. Seven to 10 years later, no planting has created a problem. Wildfires and drought have made it worse.

“Trees need water to grow, so the last few years we’ve seen slow growth on our trees so that’s less trees available for the public,” said Dee Kobervig.

Kobervig with the group El Dorado County Christmas Tree Growers says while trees have been slow to grow, the population here has exploded during the pandemic. And it’s made an impact this fall.

“People ran out of pumpkins, the pie shops were overwhelmed, some ran out of pies and apples. So there been a big demand in the area,” she said.

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She says she has already closed her place, Crystal Creek tree farm.

“And people can stand out on the road and they can look and see I still have thousands of trees standing, but I can’t sell them all. I have to have some for next year,” Kobervig said.

Kobervig says farms are still open, just be patient and willing to go off the beaten path. That’s what the Plant Foundry is already doing that to prep for next year.

“They’ll already be working now for next year, absolutely the owner is looking. It’s that type of thing, you’ve got to work that far ahead,” said Howes.