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WHEREAS, Virginia farmers grow numerous varieties of Christmas trees on 500 farms across the Commonwealth for wholesale, retail, and choose-and-cut customers; and
WHEREAS, Virginia ranks seventh in U.S. states in terms of total Christmas trees harvested, eighth in total tree acreage in production, and ninth in number of operations with Christmas tree sales; and
WHEREAS, Virginia growers deliver the spirit of the holiday season by donating hundreds of Christmas trees to military families each year through the Trees for Troops program; and
WHEREAS, Virginia grown Christmas trees are renewable, recyclable, and natural products, and for every tree cut growers replant two-to-three seedlings in its place; and
WHEREAS, Christmas tree farming is part of Virginia’s largest private industry - agriculture; and
WHEREAS, a day spent on a Christmas tree farm is a venerable holiday tradition for thousands of Virginia families and an opportunity to contribute to enterprising Virginia businesses;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize December 2018 as VIRGINIA CHRISTMAS TREE MONTH in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.