The LCF Group is developing a village concept for The Olde Christmas Tree farm …near the town of Floyd, Virginia planned to compliment its flavor and existing assets.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Floyd Virgina - History of the Olde Christmas Tree Village

David Larsen , Floyd Virginia
Brookfield Christmas Tree Farm 1987
The LCF Group and the Olde Christmas Tree Village go back a lot of years.  We purchased the main part of the farm in 1978 - thirty six years ago. We were in the Christmas tree business and over the years grew two crops of Christmas trees on this farm.  The trees were sold wholesale for a few years and then in 1985 we made the farm into a "Choose and Cut" operation. Most of you will know this as a farm to consumer operation.
                                                                             Click to enlarge and read
Christmas Trees
Brochure about Brookfield Choose and Cut Farm
The farm was a popular destination here in  Floyd just 1/2 mile from the center of town.  This was a full outdoor Christmas experience with hay rides into the tree fields to cut your tree, a Christmas shop  loaded with wreath making, hot cider, local crafts and a large fire to warm up on cold days. Out in the field and seen from Webbs Mill Road was a 40 foot high cold air Frosty the Snowman balloon. This was a real festive farm and some weekends  several  thousand people would arrive to cut their very own fresh tree - a great family event. I can remember some Saturdays as many as 17 cars in one caravan coming from Charlotte North Carolina to cut trees. It was not uncommon for them to arrive with a trailer and cut several dozen trees for friends.  The tree farm operation brought a lot of customers to the businesses of Floyd - buying local crafts and food was popular.  Floyd County still has some vary popular choose and cut tree farms.            
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Click on the photos to enlarge  
The Children really had a great time on the hay wagon and with Santa Claus.  Sometimes Jason Rutledge would bring his horses and  pull the trees from the field up to the barn. That was really a popular event. During the 25 years our Laurel Creek Farms, Ltd ( LCF Group ) was in the Christmas tree farming business several hundred citizens of Floyd County worked on our farm.  I still have great conversations with some of the people that worked on the farm and we have a good time reminiscing about the old days. The last trees were sold in 1992 and the Choose and Cut Tree operation was closed. Now we grow lots of Deer, Rabbits and an occasional Bear on the farm.

Pine Christmas tree
New Christmas Tree 
Mr Zeigler 35 years ago 
Growing Christmas trees is a lot of hard work all year long. Most people have the impression you just plant a little pine tree in the ground and 10 years later you harvest it for a big price. That 10 year growing period requires a lot of work and many dollars in expenses for each tree. That is why most novice growers give up in a few years and  you see many fields of trees here in Floyd County that are "had been intended Christmas trees".  Our Tree Plantations were managed by Mr. Michael Zeigler a Forestry graduate of Virginia Tech. Mr. Zeigler's tree crews would sometimes have 40 people working shearing and maintaining the trees. Mr. Zeigler was our tree farm manager during our entire tree farming operation. It was 22 years ago in 1992 when we retired out of tree farming and moved on to new adventures. Mr. Zeigler was our key farm manager and still is our good friend and neighbor.

David Larsen
Tree Workshop Certificate 
The LCF Group had many enjoyable and rewarding events in our 24 years of successful tree farming.  Our LCF Group even did "How to Grow and Market Christmas Trees" workshops within the Extension Division of Virginia Tech.  These workshops were during the late 70's and 80's with many Floyd County growers attending.  You can see the certificate for successful participants to the left side of this page.

Competing in the State Christmas Tree Competition to see who could grow the most perfect tree was always a fun event at the Growers meetings.  We were fortunate to win at the State a few times and then get
Christmas Tree to VA Governors Manson
Delivering tree to
Governors Manson
David Larsen
National Tree Competition 
to go to national competition.  The State Champion was privileged  to furnish the Governor's Mansion with a Christmas tree and the National Champion gets to provide the White House Christmas tree. We were happy to deliver a Christmas Tree to the Governor's Mansion a few times however the Brookfield trees did not make it to the White House.

In more recent years we added to the Olde Christmas Tree Farm by purchasing the Old Community Swimming pool located on Webbs Mill Road. This addition gives us 400 feet of frontage on Rt. 8 about 1/2 mile from the stop light in Floyd and connected Webbs Mill Road to the farm. Today you can still see the old bath house for the swimming pool as you drive by and the storage buildings that Blue Ridge Buildings have on display along the road.

There was a nice brick ranch house at the present location of Citizens Telephone Coop. That house was moved up near the County Refuse Pick Up station ---- and is still there.  I traded 5 acres of land of the farm to the owner of that brick house in the 80's and as part of the trade, we received an access road to the farm that now borders the North side of Citizens Coop property. You can see the big pine trees in back of Citizens Coop and those are old Christmas trees on our farm that are almost ready to harvest as 36 year old timber.

The LCF Group has owned this farm for 36 years and now it is time to start putting  the farm to a good use for the area.  That is why we are starting this current effort to find businesses that can take advantage of the Olde Christmas Tree Farm.  The location of the farm - about 1/2 mile from the stop light in downtown Floyd and on Route 8 - the main road in and out of Floyd County is ideal for public visibility and access.

The Choose and Cut Christmas tree farm was only a small part of our tree farming business. We also sold wholesale and operated 7 retail tree lots in the New River Valley.  Our group created the  Direct Shipping of a Christmas tree by UPS to a customer's door from our plantation. We were the first to create this new industry for Christmas Tree growers and it was done right here in Floyd County, Virginia. I will be writing about this is a future blog.

"by David Larsen"  KK4WW Computer Collector Historian 
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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A Premiere Commercial & Cyber Village Community in Floyd County, Virginia

The LCF Group is “developing a dream” for The Olde Christmas Tree Village…near the town of Floyd, Virginia planned to compliment its flavor and existing assets.
A Village Community is being designed to bring economic and tourism development to Floyd and surrounding communities. It will be a benefit to the people, a help to our many artisans, environmentalists, businessmen and women, musicians, professionals, the working class and retired.
At this time, we are developing conceptual designs and sketches.

A Village Community with the following amenities:
•Professional Office Buildings
• Technology Infrastructure
• Community Use & Attractions
• Specialty Shops
• Studios for Artisans, Musicians
• High-Density Residential, Patio Homes, Townhouses
• Assisted Living/Retirement
• Walking Trails to Benefit Townspeople
• Natural “Green Space”
• Historical Computer Museum