Over at Pete's Trees, located at Harvest Valley Christian Church, 3200 Hopyard Road, tree lot manager John Robnick and assistants Larry Deeley and Brent Vangene spent Monday readying bundled trees by drilling holes in each trunk to fit in a stand. The lot, which is just across the street from the Pleasanton Sports Park, plans to sell three types of trees: Douglas, noble and grand firs. The trees will range in price from $23 for the tabletop variety up to about $200 for 10 to 12-footers.
The freshly scented trees are grown in Oregon, according to Robnick.
"The noble firs are the most popular because the needles stick up--they've got that Charlie Brown Christmas look to them," he said.
Pete's also has another location on Stanley Boulevard at Bernal Avenue next to the McDonald's shopping center. Both locations also deliver for an extra charge.
"One of the unique things our lots offer is the trees will be placed in bowls of water, which I don't think they do anywhere else," said John Crawford, manager of the Stanley lot.
It was the same story, just a different location for the Regan Bros. at the Fairgrounds. A crew of people spent Monday setting up Christmas displays, tents and lights and unloaded trees from large trucks at the Christmas tree lot at the northeast corner of Bernal and Valley avenues. Regan Bros. has been in the Christmas tree business since 1946.
The late John Regan sold 36 trees his first year and now the company sells nearly 2,000. Son Joe Regan, 78, could be found Monday overseeing the lot's setup. They will sell noble, Douglas and grand firs from Oregon that will range in height from 4 feet tall to 16 feet tall. The tallest varieties are for the most part already spoken for by places like the Ruby Hill Country Club. The trees will range in price from $15 to nearly $300.
Home Depot will also be selling real Christmas trees beginning today. The store on Johnson Drive will be selling Douglas and noble firs ranging from 4 to 9 feet tall.
And for those who live on the northwest side of Interstate 680, Moore's Bay Area Christmas Trees will be selling Douglas, noble, silver tip, white and Frazier firs ranging from 2 feet tall to 14 feet tall. They are located at the Rowell Ranch Rodeo Park in Castro Valley.
While fake Christmas tree sales have put a dent in the sale of real trees, the industry is still going strong.
More than 100,000 people are employed in the Christmas tree industry nationwide, according to the National Christmas Tree Association. A total of $1.4 billion worth of trees was sold last holiday season.
Where to get your tree
All trees go on sale today through Christmas Eve
Pete's Trees (2 locations)
* Located next to Harvest Valley Christian Church, 3200 Hopyard Road, across the street from the Pleasanton Sports Park. Call 600-7841.
* Located next to the McDonald's shopping center at the intersection of Stanley Boulevard and Bernal Avenue. Call 249-0155.
* Both locations will be selling Douglas, noble and grand firs ranging from tabletop sizes to 10 to 12-foot-tall trees. Prices range from $23-200. Trees come from Oregon.
* Located at the northeast corner of the Alameda County Fairgrounds near intersection of Valley and Bernal avenues. Call 447-5965.
* The lot will be selling Douglas, noble and grand firs ranging from 4 feet tall to a very limited supply of 16-foot-tall trees. Prices range from $15-300. Trees come from Oregon.
* 6000 Johnson Drive. Call 847-9200.
* The store will be selling Douglas and noble firs ranging from 4 feet tall to 9 feet tall. Prices vary.
Moore's Bay Area Christmas Trees
* Rowell Ranch Rodeo Park, 9711 Dublin Canyon Road, Castro Valley. Call 510-886-6015.
* Lot will be selling Douglas, noble, silver tip, white and Frazier firs ranging from 2 feet tall to 14 feet tall