When a Christmasphile (lover of all things holly and jolly) lives in the Foothills, there are several options as to where to find the season’s tallest and brightest evergreen.
But for more than 15 years Auburn’s best known purveyor of the tannenbaum has been Poppy Lane Christmas Farm and Pumpkin Patch on Highway 49, owned by Alta residents Larry and Debi Powell.
The lot’s warm and twinkly lights can be seen a long way down that stretch of road, enticing passersby with a wide assortment of red-ribboned firs: noble, grand, Nordmann, Douglas, red and white. Some are shipped from Oregon and Washington, while others are grown locally in Alta. They range in size from 2 to 15 feet, and all are priced under $100.
While grown-ups may be drawn in by the variety of trees, children will enjoy the many holiday light displays of reindeer, Santas, and snowmen as well as the Nativity scene, play structure and tire swing. If that’s not entertainment enough, vintage cartoons play in little TV boxes on opposite sides of the lot, and in the evening there’s a small bonfire.
If the air turns chilly, there’s always the cozy comfort of the wooden shack where sweets are sold along with figurines, ornaments and jewelry, and a busy toy train rattles in a loop above patrons’ heads.
All the while, Christmas carols are chorusing.
“Some customers return every year,” said helper elf, Jodeen Pederson. “They know to come for the really big trees the day after Thanksgiving.”
While Thanksgiving has come and gone, there are still plenty of stately green trees lined like soldiers under a crisscrossing and multi-colored glow of baubles, and Darren Desimone is just the man to help you find the perfect fit. He’ll even saw off the end, save a few branches for your mantle, net it and help you to the car.
And if all that weren’t enough, grab a bag of PlacerGrown mandarins on your way out. Auburn’s jewel of the season makes a great stocking stuffer – if you can wait that long to eat them.