Tri City Hotspot: Kluck Nursery keeps Christmas authentic with real trees

Tri-City Hotspot: Kluck Nursery

By Michael Piwowarski, news editor.

SAGINAW — The Christmas tree is a staple of American households during the holiday season. Oftentimes, you will come across a tree that is well decorated and looks nice, but is fake and made of plastic. The practice of using a real tree, however, is not going anywhere.

Kluck Nursery, a family business that has been passed on from generation to generation since the 1920s, has grown and sold real Christmas trees for nearly a century.

Located at 1020 Van Wormer Rd in Saginaw, the nursery operates its own Christmas tree farm located just a little further south (all you have to do is follow the signs). Customers get to choose from thousands of individually priced trees and cut down their own tree.

Tyler Kluck, an employee who is from the fourth generation of the Kluck family, says that the nursery takes up a total of 400 acres, plants an average of 6,000 trees per year and sells 4,500 to 4,800 trees annually.

“We’re definitely the biggest in the Tri Cities for sure,” says Kluck. “For retail, […] we’re top one, two or three in the state of Michigan.”

Kluck states that artificial trees are actually more likely to catch on fire.

The National Fire Protection Association states that artificial trees are just as much of a fire hazard (if not more so) as real trees, since issues such as overloaded outlets and bad wires can easily cause a blaze. Thus, taking necessary fire safety precautions is imperative also when dealing with artificial trees.

Kluck relays that real trees are proven to be more environmentally friendly than artificial ones.

In a Nov. 26 New York Times report, Karen Zraick elaborated that it is a misconception to think that cutting down live Christmas trees is bad for the environment, since it takes up to 10 years for a tree to grow to a typical size (five to six feet), and tree farmers typically plant at least one for every tree that gets cut. In addition, the trees also benefit the environment by helping keep air clean and providing a natural habitat for wildlife.

In further efforts of environmental friendliness, Kluck Nursery provides a tree recycling program for after the Christmas season is over; when people are done with their trees, they can be brought back to the farm, and the trees get chipped into mulch, which is used around the nursery and actually covers the tree farm’s walkways.

Customers who recycle also get a certificate, which can be redeemed at Kluck’s in May for a free white spruce seedling that can be planted.

“A lot of people […] that have been coming for a lot of years will plant [their spruce trees] in a line, let’s say, in their yard, and they can kind of watch them grow each year, which is kind of neat too,” says Kluck.

Kluck states that a real tree, as long as it receives proper care (including regular watering), can last as long as one and a half months before losing needles, although each tree’s life span does vary.

“At first, it’s really key to keep it watered,” says Kluck. “If it […] sits dry for, like, a day, the bottom can seal up, and then it won’t take water up anymore, and then that’s when needles start to fall.”

At the end of the day, Kluck wants to make it clear that getting a real tree is all about getting the authentic experience of going outdoors, picking a tree and cutting it down, as well as spending valuable time with friends and family along the way — an experience that arguably can’t be found in propping up a green colored piece of plastic every year.

“We want to provide memories for families that […] can start when they’re young and [be carried] on through their family,” says Kluck. “We’ve had a lot of customers coming back for 30, 40… even some for 50 years.”

Kluck Nursery is open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and offers fun for the whole family, with snacks and free wagon rides on the weekends, a straw fort for the kids and free popcorn balls with every tree purchase. More information can be found at their website,, and on their Facebook page.

Leave a Reply

Notify of
shared on