Where Unused Christmas Trees Go

Millions of Christmas trees are sold before Christmas, meaning local stores have to stock up on hundreds of them. But what happens to some of those trees that don't find a home before the holidays?

Obviously the goal is to have as few trees left as possible, but that doesn't always happen. Local Christmas tree vendors say sometimes they have dozens or even hundreds of trees they couldn't sell before Christmas, which hurts their bottom line. And you might be surprised where some of those trees end up. @

Michael Carmello had a good year, only about ten trees left at his store.

“Yeah, the more we have left over, the more money we lose absolutely,” said Carmello.

Last year, he had about sixty leftover, losing Carmello about a thousand dollars.

“Well a grand hurts,” he said, “But at this time of year it's not as bad as if it was a grand say in March.”

That's because selling trees and wreaths accounts for a fifth of what Carmello makes all year. That's important to keep his small store in Fall River afloat.

“We're in the business where holidays keep us going, so Christmas is a big holiday and we almost didn't make to this holiday,” said Carmello.

The store's freezer, cooler, and heater all broke down in the past couple months, setting Carmello back quite a bit.

“And had it been any other time of the year, we would have had to close the doors,” he said, “We almost did.”

But selling about 875 trees and making thousands may mean he can keep the doors open another year, when he'll try it all again.

“The only thing I could have done this year was get bigger trees,” said Carmello.

For now, Carmello is figuring out what to do with the leftovers. Last year, the day old evergreens just got thrown out. This year, the store manager said he has a better plan.

“Yup to goats, go figure.”

Xavier's Florist down the street in Fall River said they also only had about ten trees left this year, which is better than past years.

Managers credit a good selling season for that small amount.