Christmas Tree Custom Thrives at Dzen Family Farm & Garden Market
Posted on December 5, 2015
Story & Photos by Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb.com
Through the centuries the Christmas Tree has evolved into one of the holiday season’s most beloved customs. In central Connecticut, when it comes time to cut your own or pick from the best of already cut trees, the name Dzen quickly comes to mind.
Dzen Garden Market at the Ellington five corners is currently adorned with evergreen logs, kissing balls, wreaths and trees galore – the latter making their way to the market from the Dzen Christmas Tree Farm just up the road in South Windsor, along Barber Hill Road. Folks who choose to cut their own at the farm are greeted by a festive looking arch decorated by longtime Dzen employee Pauline Hantilo who can be found, most days during the season, at the market working on holiday arrangements.
“All of our trees come from the Dzen farm, the one with the arch in front” she said Friday morning December 4.
Inside the market are displays of beautiful poinsettias, as well as, winter roses poinsettia plants grown by another farmer in nearby Somers. The rose poinsettias are nicknamed “Kris Kringle”, according to Hantilo.
Owned by Donald and Joseph Dzen, the Dzen Christmas Tree Farm spans 100 acres where Fraser firs, canaan firs, balsam firs and blue spruce are grown, according to their website. In the 1930’s their grandfather Steven Dzen began by growing potatoes and tobacco and raising dairy cows. It was in the 1970’s that Christmas Trees were added followed by the opening of the Ellington market in 1998.
Situated on one of five corners at a roundabout, in addition to the garden aspect of the market the Dzen Garden Market in Ellington also has an ice cream window. It is currently open and has added holiday flavors such as peppermint, eggnog, apple pie and pumpkin.
Dzen Christmas Trees have become an annual tradition for many, both in and beyond the area. Online sources say the history of Christmas Trees dates back to Roman times evolving to become a custom celebrated in different countries. Said to have been banned in America during the Puritan era, Christmas Trees later were put up in pockets of the country. Immortalized in the Christmas song “Oh Tannenbaum”, the origin of the modern Christmas Tree is associated with the Renaissance of modern Germany. Reportedly, it was popularized in America in the mid 1800’s thanks to the Royal Family of Great Britain.
One account goes that Queen Victoria’s husband Price Albert, who was her German cousin, brought a Christmas Tree to Windsor Castle and an illustrated family portrait around the Christmas Tree appeared in a London publication. News of it spread to the “fashionable East Coast” of America and became a catalyst for American Christians’ modern Christmas Tree custom. Coming from his home state of Vermont, the first national Christmas Tree was lit in 1923 on the lawn of the White House by President Calvin Coolidge.
Whatever the origin, the Christmas Tree is now one of the best known and celebrated symbols of the season.
Visit https:// http://www.dzenfarms.com/christmas-trees/ for more information about the Dzen Christmas Tree Farm in South Windsor, CT, one in Ellington and the market.