There’s a new place to buy Christmas trees in Laurel with a familiar name.
Schmitt’s Farm on Sound Avenue in Riverhead recently announced they would be opening a second location at Schmitt’s Country Fresh along Main Road.
Ahead of Thanksgiving, brothers Phil and Matt were preparing for the holidays, staking Christmas trees, hanging wreaths and stringing lights at the stand, which for decades was run by their cousin, Albie.
During the pandemic, Phil Schmitt explained, Albie mentioned that he’d like to see the brothers take over the stand, which has typically opened May 1 with a selection of plants, hanging baskets, cut flower bouquets, local fruits and vegetables and other farm stand classics like home-baked pies, jellies and condiments.
“This year, he said he was ready,” Phil said. “We thought it seemed like a good opportunity and what’s good is we can keep it in the family.”
While the season in Laurel usually ends with pumpkins, apples, mums, roasted corn and a maze, they decided to reopen for the holidays with cut trees, wreaths, roping and decor.
“And obviously horseradish we’ll have,” said Phil, adding that they also plan to stock baked goods, pickled items and cult-favorites like their carrot cake jam plus seasonal local vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts and butternut squash.
The Schmitt family has been farming on Long Island for over 150 years. Around 2005, their Riverhead farm stand took shape beginning with just a trailer pulled out by a tractor each morning.
Holy Schmitt’s Horseradish was founded in 2010 and began as a hobby for Matt Schmitt. Following his grandfather’s recipe, he made jars of horseradish for family and friends to share at holidays and parties. The name “Holy Schmitt’s” came from the surprised reactions of everyone who tasted it and today, it comes in seven flavors.
Consider this holiday season as a test run of what’s to come.
The brothers, who are fourth-generation farmers, hope to reopen in the spring with a grand opening and new signage mirroring the Riverhead location, meaning they’ll officially have both Main Road and Sound Avenue covered. “We’re feeling good about it,” Phil said.
Schmitt’s Farm Stand on Sound in Riverhead is open seven days a week at 3355 Sound Avenue. The new stand in Laurel, at the corner of Main Road and Laurel Lane, is open weekends (Friday and Saturday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Sunday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.) through Dec. 11.