Pre-K students from Eastfield visited Finley’s Frasier Firs after learning about trees for six weeks in the classroom.
The family-run business owned by Randy and Jean Finley have Christmas tree farms in Mitchell and Avery counties. For the past several decades have come to McDowell County to sell their trees. Their lot is located beside the shopping center at Verizon Wireless on U.S. 70 West, and they are residents of Woodlawn.
“Today is Christmas to me,” owner Jean Finley said about the students visiting.
Pre-K teacher Rebecca Oliver said the trip to the farm was a treat for their six-week study about different kinds of trees.
“We have learned about what kind of animals live in trees, what grows in trees and what you can make from trees,” she said.
On this day, Finley and her husband Randy talked to the students about growing Christmas trees, such as they will only grow in an elevation of 2,700 feet or above for them to live. They talked about wreath making, and the students got to check out the different sizes of trees and wreaths.
The Finleys talked to the students about why the trees smell so good, how they wrap them for purchase and how they get them to stand up on the lot.
“Trees smell good because of the pods on the end. That’s where the sap is,” said Jean.
Student Breeze Blankenship talked about what he has learned about trees in Oliver’s class.
“Leaves can change colors and they also grow from the ground up to the sky. They get tall by burying the seeds in the ground and they will grow. It takes a little while for them to grow,” he said. “The special thing about trees is the trunk because the trunk makes the leaves to hang onto the branches.”
Deklan Seaman said the class has their own tree named “Steve.”
“We hug the tree. He’s big, brown and green. He got cold and he fell down and his leaves fell down,” he said.
The Finley’s have operated the tree farm for over 30 years, and have sold to such celebrities as Michael Bolton and Martha Stewart. Jean is a technology instructor at AB-Tech and Randy is in window and door sales.