12/18/2012 08:48 am ET Updated Feb 17, 2013

UGA Professor Working To Develop Hybrid Christmas Tree That Can Grow Throughout South


Most Christmas trees that adorn people's homes this time of year are grown and harvested elsewhere due to Georgia's hot summers and humid climate.

A University of Georgia horticulturist is hoping to change that by popularizing a hybrid that combines Fraser firs with their Japanese cousins, the Momi firs.

Mark Czarnota, a horticulturist and associate professor at the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, hopes to combine the hardy Momi fir rootstock and Fraser scion, or shoot, into a tree that will grow throughout much of Georgia and the Southeast.