HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - There’s a wonderland of holiday wreaths, garlands and, of course, Christmas trees in Moiliili.
At the center of it all is “Mr. Christmas Tree” himself, Richard Tajiri.
He’s been selling them on Oahu for more than 40 years.
“I was fortunate that we were able to get a lot of nobles this year,” Tajiri said. “I’ve been working long, you know, from July all the way to now. It’s been a long six months.”
But securing trees for Hawaii lately hasn't been easy.
Tajiri said many farmers in the Pacific Northwest have either quit or turned to other crops.
"If you come up to Oregon - mostly in Oregon - you'll see all the Christmas tree farms have disappeared and they're raising grapes," he said.
And is green so last season?
It used to be that lights gave Christmas trees some color. But now, customers want the tree itself to be merry and bright.
"People want colored trees, we do even black trees, we do all kinds of crazy colors," Tajiri told us. "We're the only ones is town doing it I guess, so whatever people want we will do it."
Tajiri will keep selling this season until every tree has a home. It's all a labor of love.
“It’s the satisfaction. Happy people. And I get to see some of my, some of my customers have been buying from me for 35, 40 years,” he said. “It’s like what my wife said ‘this is no money making anymore. It’s your pet, that’s all you do. You’re just having a toy. It’s like your toy.’”