Oakdale resident hopes big Christmas tree will support fellow farmers

Picture: Sharon Robertson

Picture: Sharon Robertson

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas - and what's more iconic than a real Christmas tree?

Oakdale farmer Lynette Rideout-Keanelly wants to give one lucky person a huge homegrown tree and support a good cause.

Mrs Rideout-Keanelly is selling a five-metre tall Christmas tree with half of the funds being donated to the Dilly Drought Drive.

"The tree has been growing for eight years, it has been booked twice by two families in the past four years but has ended up being too big for their houses," she said.

"So I thought it might be a good idea to try and find it a home and support the Dilly Drought Drive as well."

Mrs Rideout-Keanelly has been a farm liaison officer for the drought drive since it was established.

"I have seen how much the drive has helped farmers and I have benefited from receiving water myself," she said.

"I just think this is nice way to give back and it's a way to pay it forward.

"The festive season is is wonderful but I think we need to keep in mind that there are a lot of people who will be doing it tough this year - like our farmers."

Trees about three metres high often sell for roughly $300 and Mrs Rideout-Keanelly is hoping to fetch at least that for this five-metre tree.

"We have started the bidding at $300 - a tank of water is around $150 so I'd like to donate as much as we possibly can," she said.

"The sky's the limit but I would be chuffed with anything that we can get."

Mrs Rideout-Keanelly said nothing compared to having a real Christmas tree.

"Real trees are sustainable because for every one that we cut down, we plant another," she said.

"We grow them like crops.

"And they smell amazing - it really is the smell that makes them so special."

Mrs Rideout-Keanelly encouraged people to bid on the giant tree and support the Dilly Drought Drive.

"It's a great way to support struggling farmers," she said.

"Without farmers we wouldn't have anything to eat.

"Even our clothing and drink industries rely on local producers.

"If we want to keep our great Australian produce we have to get behind farmers."