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Oct 23, 2018







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What are you really interested in right now?

I make fishing products. … Lures, flies, spinners, things of that nature.




Paul Lemire
Christmas Tree Farmer

12/14/17



Explain what your current job is.

I’m the owner and we raise Christmas trees for sale. We have cut-your-own and we also bring in trees from other farms. We sell Christmas trees, wreaths, roping, and people come here for the experience. … We plant trees when they’re seedlings, probably about 12 inches tall. We plant them in the spring. And we just take care of them all summer. Fertilize [them], and after fertilizing, it’s basically watching the trees grow. We’re concerned with insects and we try and keep the grass down so the trees don’t have to compete with the growing grass around, and when they get big enough, like in three years, we start shearing them. Every tree is sheared every year to give them a perfect Christmas tree shape. And when they’re up tall enough, we put them up for sale. … We [also] bring in about 5,000 trees a year from other farms. … We’re going to be able to do about 750 [of our own trees] this year.
 
How long have you done this?
This is our 17th year of selling trees and we started about eight years before that. So we’ve been in business about 25 years. … We planted 500 the first year and kept on going from there.
 
How did you get interested in this field?
I went to look for a farm to cut my own tree, 20-some-odd years ago. … We went there and the trees were out on a pasture, not sheared, and we could not find a really nice tree. So the following year … we started planting Christmas trees. … I joined the Vermont New Hampshire Christmas Tree Association, which I’m on the board of directors now and … other members help you out and … show you what to do, what not to do.  
 
What kind of education or training did you need for this?
If you have an agricultural training, it would help. … You learn what you can about fertilizing, and spraying for insects. … I grew up on a farm and I worked on a farm when I was younger, but other than that, I had no experience in agriculture. … You learn as you go along.
 
How did you find your current job?
My parents had some land in Litchfield and when I couldn’t find a nice tree to cut down at that other farm, I asked him if I could plant trees on their land. 
 
What’s the best piece of work-related advice anyone’s ever given you?
I’ve gotten all kinds of advice. Some good, some bad. It’s going to depend on your personal … farm. … We make our own compost ... and a lot of the larger farms, they don’t have the capability to do that.
 
What do you wish you’d known at the beginning of your career?
If I had more knowledge of chemicals that we can use, it might have helped back then. But there were enough people that were around that would give you good information. … We try not to use any chemicals if we don’t have to. 
 
What is your typical at-work uniform?
Jeans and boots.
 
What was the first job you ever had?
When I went to college, I worked in a gas station part-time.
 
— Ryan Lessard 





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