Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Danny Koeller of Driftless Evergreen Co. delivers trees to the Kriskindlmarkt in downtown Sparta. Herald photo by Nicole Vik.

Driftless Evergreen Co. to partner with Down A Country Road this holiday season

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, everyone is eager to find some joy and celebrate Christmas early this year. Danny Koeller, owner of the newly established Driftless Evergreen Co., is happy to help them get started by assisting them in selecting their fresh Christmas trees.   

Koeller was visiting an area tree farm with his family last year when he and his wife became enchanted with the idea of owning and operating a tree farm of their own.

“It just seemed like they were having so much fun,” he said. “It seemed like something fun to do with the family.”

Koeller started contemplating how his wife’s family farm, which is situated along the edge of the Kickapoo Valley Reserve, would be the perfect place to start a tree farm due to the many challenges the sloped terrain presents. 

“We can’t really work the land because there’s really only about 15 acres that would be tillable,” Koeller said. “The other 90 acres are wooded and not easily accessed with any sort of large equipment.”

This past spring Koeller, along with his crew, set the plan into motion to establish Driftless Evergreen Co. by planting over 300 trees for the purpose of selling them as Christmas trees.

According to Koeller, a typical tree farm will grow 1,000 trees per acre. Over the next few years, he will continue to plant more trees and is hoping he will learn to find a balance.

“There are a lot of farms in the area that have the space but they stick to what they need for a healthy rotation of the trees,” Koeller said, adding that when you cut down trees you also need to consider the stumps left behind and how to repurpose the land. “A lot of farms use stump grinders or pretty intense discers that come through to break up the roots.”

At that point, if the farmer isn’t planting anything except trees, the soil tends to get worn out because trees require a lot of nutrients. “We’re considering planting pollinator flowers with the trees just to help with the health balance of the soil,” he said. 

Just like with anything else, in order to grow healthy, beautiful trees it’s essential to have healthy soil.

Growing trees however takes time...a lot of time. It will be at least six years before Koeller will be able to utilize the trees he grew himself so, in the meantime he will be sourcing pre-cut trees from growers in northern Wisconsin in an effort to operate a tree lot, from which the sales will be reinvested into planting more trees.  

Driftless Evergreen Co. will be partnering with Down A Country Road, located at 12651 Hwy 33 in Cashton, this year to provide the ultimate Christmas shopping experience.

The newly created Christmas Cottage at the village shops will include gifts, home decor and crafts.

Visitors can enjoy a cup of hot chocolate or apple cider while they peruse through the fresh trees, which include Fraser Fir, Balsam Fir and Blue Spruce as well as wreaths.

The tree lot’s grand opening is scheduled for Nov. 27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will also be open on Nov. 28 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Nov. 29 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The following weekend, the tree lot will be open on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“The goal is to get Christmas trees in people’s houses because the things that happen around a Christmas tree are pretty cool,” Koeller said. “I see it as an opportunity to connect with other people and spread some happiness.”

Trees can also be pre-ordered, and deliveries can be scheduled at www.driflessevergreenco.com.  

Evans Print & Media Group

1302 River Rd.
P.O. Box 252

Sparta, WI 54656-0252

Office Number: (608) 269-3186
Fax Number: (608) 269-6876
Email: 
news@monroecountyherald.com

 

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