To qualify, the donated tree must be about 40 feet tall and either an eastern red cedar, Norway spruce, or white pine. Candidate trees must be fully branched on all sides and accessible by large equipment.
The right tree may either be near the end of its life or may need to be removed for other reasons. Once a tree is selected, MDC staff will coordinate the cutting and delivery of the tree to the governor's mansion at no cost to the owner. The donor will receive a personalized thank-you from the governor and an invitation to the lighting ceremony, which usually occurs the first week of December.
“It sometimes happens that homeowners, businesses, or communities have wonderful evergreens that need to be removed for home expansion, utility work, or other reasons,” says Forestry Field Program Supervisor Russell Hinnah. “Having your tree displayed at the governor's mansion is a wonderful way to share its beauty with thousands of Missourians who visit the mansion during the holidays.”
Hinnah instructs people to take photos of candidate trees and email them firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include a contact telephone number, location of the tree, and several pictures taken from different angles and distances. Candidate tree nominations can also be submitted by mail to: Missouri Department of Conservation, ATTN: Mansion Christmas Tree, P.O. Box 180, Jefferson City, MO 65102.
Full guidelines are available at http://mdc.mo.gov/trees-plants/governors-mansion-christmas-tree-search. For more information or questions, contact the MDC Forestry Division at 573-751-4115.