Welcome to the Red Barn Tree Farm. Gland you are taking a few minutes to read about the history of the farm, now know as the Red Barn Tree Farm. Our farm was one of original farms in the area that was owned by George Manning. This particular farm sits at the intersection of Soldiers Home Miamisburg Rd. and Manning Rd. Manning road is naturally named after George Manning.
Among Mr. Manning’s business ventures was a hauling business. He operated several teams of horses and wagons from the property in the late 1800s. As a teamster George’s teams hauled gravel for the Centerville – Miamisburg Turnpike, which is now known as Ohio State Route 725.
The Morris’ purchased 17 acres of the original 30 acres of the farm, at this location, for the sole purpose of establishing a Christmas tree farm. At the time of purchase the property had 7 buildings on it, the main house, the large Red Barn, a smoke house (which was salvaged for it’s lumber) the small butchering building, the machine shed, an old tobacco barn (which ahs been resided and now contains an office and workshop) and a two car detached garage with the traditional 2 hole out house in one corner. The Red Barn, from which we derived the name of the farm, contained the milking parlor for the cows, two large hay lofts, and had a small lean-to shed which we have replaced with the new portion , from which we now operate the yearly tree sales.
Our first Christmas trees were planted in 1988, that year over 2500 seedling were planted. The spring and summer of 1988 were extremely dry and the seedling quickly succumbed to the dry spring and summer months. Of the 2500 original seedling planted that year, less than 100 survived. The next year, 1989, the surviving trees from the pervious planting were moved from their original planting area, to property line planting on the east side and to the south and western side of the property. Then, the original field section was replanted.
In 1990, 1991 and 1992 the remaining lots were planted on the northern side of the farm. These first years plantings were done by hands, it was a family and friends affair, taking a whole weekend.
In 1993, 1994, 1995, and 1996 the 4 sections on the southern side of the farm were planted. 1993 was the last year for hand planting. In the spring of 1993 we purchase a Christmas tree planter and reduced the time it took to plant 2000 seedlings from a weekend to just 4 hours. The planter also allows us to perform contract seedling plantings for cities and state governments, as well as private land owners. After the spring planting in 1996, we had over 12,000 trees growing on the farm.
In 1997, the farm was opened for the first cutting. Of the original 2000 tress that we planted, many remained after that first year of sales. With an increasing size and number of mature trees on the farm and a demand for good quality nursery stock, a supplemental balled and burlap tree business was developed. This helped to clear the land in preparation for the next planting.
From 1996 through 1999 the garage attached to the original farm house, was used as the place of business and to get reacquainted with our customers from the past year. The garage was emptied, ,the cars were replace with picnic tables and our traditional candy cane tree and hot chocolate were set up. While adequate, it did not produce the family atmosphere and experience the Red Barn Tree Farm wanted to provide our customers. So in 2000, renovation on the “Red Barn” began with the new tree sales barn. Through the coming years we hope to complete renovation of the original barn and add a large stone fireplace for the comfort of our guests. But for now, the addition is where you will find the candy cane tree, the hot chocolate, the picnic tables, the Christmas music and the staff. We welcome you, and hope you will sit, a talk for a spell, while you warm your self with hot chocolate.
Stop in and enjoy the warmth, the candy canes, the hot chocolate and the collection of old snow sleds, Some may just bring back a memory and a smile from a simpler time.
Merry Christmas, from the Red Barn Tree Farm.