6 Sacramento-area Christmas tree farms to visit this holiday season

Images courtesy of Snowy Peaks Christmas Tree Farm and Davis Ranch

Whether you’re looking for a classically fragrant pine or a strong noble fir for hanging heavy ornaments, we’ve found several family-owned tree farms in and around the Sierra foothills that will make a memorable excursion for the whole family.

Davis Ranch

Just 30 minutes east of Sacramento in Sloughhouse, this working farm is known for its yellow and white sweet corn during harvest season, but this time of year, you can still find holiday favorites like mandarin oranges and walnuts for sale at its produce stand. Browse the ample selection of Christmas trees—including Douglas fir, Monterey pine, incense cedar, and Sierra redwood—that you can choose and cut on your own, or pick a sturdy Noble fir or silver tip pre-cut tree to bring home. Stop by to visit Santa from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends. 9 a.m.-dusk daily. 13211 Jackson Rd. Sloughhouse. 682-2658. davisranchproduce.com

Harris Tree Farm

While this 150 year-old Pollock Pines tree farm offers an impressive selection of silver tip, white fir, noble fir, cedar, Douglas fir, pine, and grand fir Christmas trees, it’s Harris’ selection of delicious, inventive holiday goodies that keep regulars returning year after year. Irene’s Kitchen, a nod to the Harris family matriarch, features seasonal pies, turnovers, jams and butters made with fruit from the property’s organic berry farm. Splurge on mini apple cider donuts and s’mores made at bonfires on the weekends. Or, after choosing and cutting the perfect tree, fill up on jalapeno tamales, hot dogs and chili. Be sure to hurry up the hill—Santa is making his final appearance Sun. Dec. 13. 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily until Christmas Eve. 2640 Blair Rd. Pollock Pines. 530-644-2194. harristreefarm.com

Indian Rock Ranch

Open for over 40 years, this tree farm and fly-fishing retreat in Apple Hill has become a tradition for many families seeking a quiet mountain escape to find the perfect tree. Indian Rock Ranch offers 13 acres of silver tip, Douglas fir, white fir, pine, incense cedar and specialty fir Christmas trees. Plus, day-trippers can also nab freshly cut green wreaths, take fly-fishing lessons at a private stream, explore a thatched-roof Native American hut, step inside an old mineshaft called Broken Handle Mine and warm up with some hot cocoa. On your way out, don’t forget to take a photo with Indian Rock’s life-size wooden Santa Bear. 8:30 a.m.-dusk daily. 3800 North Canyon. Camino. 530-622-4087. indianrocktreefarm.com

Little Bear Tree Farm

Running through this quaint tree farm in Alta is Little Bear Creek, a tranquil waterway teeming with giant German brown trout. Stop to feed the fish and continue on your quest for the perfect tree, during which the whole family is loaded into a vintage Willys truck, driven up the mountain by attendants through the farm’s 50 acres of silver tip and white fir trees, and dropped in the forest, saw in hand, to choose the perfect tree. After netting and loading your tree, attendants will take you back down the mountain, where you can stop into Little Bear’s gift shop, grab a cup of hot cider or stand around the warmth of a weekend bonfire. 9 a.m.-4p.m. Thurs.-Sun. Mon.-Weds. by appointment. 960 Meadow Rd. Alta. 530-389-8989. littlebeartreefarm.com

Prenderosa Christmas Tree Farm

Just a short jaunt from Sacramento, this 25-year-old, family-run tree farm features a variety of fir, pine, spruce, cedar and sequoia trees to choose and cut on your own, as well as  durable and noble Nordmann firs pre-cut and ready to tie to the top of the family car. After picking from the impressive selection, relax by the crackling bonfire where you can roast marshmallows, or grab candy canes, hot cider and handmade wreaths from the farmstand while Christmas tunes play in the background. 9 a.m.-dusk weekends. 12 p.m.-dusk weekdays. 1060 First Right Rd. El Dorado. 530-626-1951. prenderosatrees.com

Snowy Peaks Tree Farm

Snow is glistening at this 55-acre tree farm in Foresthill’s Crystal Mountains, where you can enjoy complimentary coffee, hot chocolate and candy canes while browsing the 36 year-old farm’s white fir, Douglas fir, cedar and silver tip trees, the latter of which won won Best of Show in the California Christmas Tree Association’s annual tree contest. Pick up s’more materials and stay toasty warm by the bonfire, or take a picturesque horse-drawn wagon ride through the frosted hillside. 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. daily through Dec.18. 30100 Foresthill Rd. Foresthill. 530-367-3766. snowypeaksfarm.com

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