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Holiday Hills Christmas trees get flocking treatment (w/video)

By Jessica Rodrigo
Dec. 11, 2013 at 6:11 a.m.


MEET OUR COVER MODEL

We asked if Steven Clary was game to flock any random item the Get Out crew could get their mitts on. So, of course, we hit our area Goodwill and found a ceramic squirrel coin bank with an acorn. Clary's master flocker, Daniel Loa, had only flocked trees in the past, but we challenged him to flock the newest member of our crew, Gordon.

"I've never done it, but I'll give it a try," Loa said with a laugh.

He propped it on a plastic bucket and gave him a shower of water and then went to work and turned him into a wintry rodent frozen in time.

Loa even scratched the snow off his eyes and gave him a light dusting with glitter. Thanks, guys; this made our Christmas.

For those looking forward to a white Christmas, Daniel Loa, longtime worker of the Holiday Hills Christmas Trees lot, can flock any of the live trees into what look like perfectly powdered pines.

He's worked for the company for the past seven years and knows a thing or two about making Christmas magical for families.

"We have to make sure it looks good for the customer, make it even and make it look natural," said Loa, 46.

The process includes giving the live trees a quick misting with water and then dusting them with a fine powder of paper. It looks like snow when it falls on the branches, he said, and some people like to get glitter on their trees.

If white or blue lights are used on a tree that has been flocked and has glitter, Loa said, they'll really catch the light and make the tree sparkle.

He and Kyle Pental have been flocking trees as quickly as they can, weather permitting. If the South Texas weather is too unforgiving, the flock becomes a gooey mess, Loa said.

Pental, 25, started flocking trees after Loa trained him on the process. Holiday Hills has two turntables to rotate the trees while they're flocking, so if there is a cold front coming, it slows down their production.

"We do different coatings from a light, medium, medium-heavy and heavy," Loa said. "There's also a tips coating, which is just the edges of the branches."

Shopping for live, flocked Christmas trees (w/video)

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