(Courtesy of @becsherm, taken at Castro Valley Christmas Tree Farm)

Where to Buy (and Chop!) Your Last-Minute Christmas Tree

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'Tis the season to fill your home with the fragrant, wafting smell of a well-decorated evergreen.

But there are only so many days left until Christmas. If you haven't gotten your tree yet, here are some of the best topiary slingers in the area—you can even sneak in a pony ride, chop down your own fir, or go on a glorious redwood hike while you're at it.



The Guardsmen Tree Lot

Get into the Christmas spirit while giving back to those in need. Droves of Bay Area families flock back year after year to partake in a lively, charitable tradition: picking out a tree from the Guardsmen, who donate a large portion of the proceeds to help at-risk youth in San Francisco. This is an all-volunteer organization, so feel free to lend a hand this holiday season. // $40-$110 up to 15 feet tall; 9am-9pm everyday, 2 Marina Blvd. (Marina), sftreelot.guardsmen.org.


ABC Tree Farms

Stocking nearly 20 lots with yuletide trees throughout the Bay Area, ABC Tree Farms is a convenient tree-shopping option, regardless of which side of the Bay you call home. For the most part, each lot carries four different types of firs—Nobel, Douglas, Grand, and Turkish—and they also offer onsite flocking to safeguard your Christmas tree from catching fire. Depending on the lot you visit, home delivery may (or may not) be an option. // Tree prices start around $50 for a 4-foot-tall fir; 10am–9am Monday–Friday, 9am–9pm Saturday–Sunday; to find a lot near your, check out their locations page here, abctreefarms.net.


Christmas Tree Jamboree

Christmas Tree Jamboree is a quintessential family-run holiday go-to, opting for steadfast quality over endless quantity in its selection of high-quality, pre-cut trees. They'll even flock it and fireproof if for you. // $40-$100 up to 11-feet tall; 9am-9pm everyday, 574 Bayshore Blvd. (Bayview), christmastreejamboree.com.


Delancey Street Trees

A favorite in the Bay Area for 30 years, Delancey Street Trees is beloved for its rock-bottom prices. Swing by one of nine locations to snag an affordable, healthy tree that will stay green well into the New Year. // $35-$135 up to 13-feet tall; 8am-10pm, multiple Bay Area locations, delanceytrees.org/sf-bay-area.


Santa's Tree Farm

There's no shortage of evergreens at this Half Moon Bay staple. Santa's Tree Farm, right off Highway 92, brims with a bounty of both pre-cut and chop-it-yourself trees, including junipers, firs, and more. The best part? No tree will set you back more than $75. // Starting at $45; 9am-5pm Monday-Friday, 8am–5pm Saturday and Sunday, 78 Pilarcitos Creek Rd. (Half Moon Bay), santastreefarm.com.


Larsen's Christmas Tree Farm

Larsen's Christmas Tree Farm has been quietly operating in Petaluma for nearly a century now, offering quality, eco-consciously grown and harvested evergreens to the Bay Area masses. Better yet, their choose-and-cut mantra is this: if you can cut it and carry it, it'll cost you just $49. If you're not in the mood to embrace your inner lumberjack, pre-cut trees are also available for a fair price. A word to the wise: They often sell- out quickly, but evergreen wreaths, small decorative trees, and other Christmas-time flora are available even after the last tree on the lot is cut down; we'd recommend calling in advance before making the drive out to the farm. // Pre-cut trees starting at $53 for 4-foot-tall firs; Friday–Sunday from 9am–5pm, 391 Marshall Ave. (Petaluma), petalumachristmas.com.


Wonderland Trees

Family-owned Wonderland Trees offers several varieties of sustainably harvested firs from Oregon. Have little ones? Make th trip a family affair,—the kiddos can wipe out their sugar rushes in the lot's supervised bounce house and other kid-friendly activities. Or, if you're too cozy in bed, binge-watching Netflix, you can order your tree online. // Starting at $28 for a 2-foot-tall fir; open daily from 10am–9pm, 5600 Shellmound St. (Emeryville); 2453 Hancock St. (Alameda); 3200 Naglee Rd. (Tracy), wonderlandtrees.com.

Clancy's Christmas Tree Farm

The centrally located Clancy's wins for being one of the most convenient Christmas tree lots for San Franciscans. Go for the old fashioned country vibe complete with pony rides for the kids. Bonus points for the parking lot. They'll even custom-flock your chosen tree. // $55-$150 up to 12-feet tall; 9am-9pm everyday, 1620 7th Ave. (Inner Sunset), clancystrees.com.


Castro Valley Christmas Tree Farm

It's hard to envision a more picturesque tree farm than the one you'll find in the beguiling East Bay hills. Chop down your own tree during a guided "choose and chop" session, or pick up a pre-cut and jam. Bonus: This is also a hiker's paradise. // $40-$110 up to 12-feet tall; 9am-5pm Friday through Sunday, 7001 Miller Rd. (Castro Valley), cvchristmastreefarm.com

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