W.Va. Couple Donates White House Christmas Tree for Fourth Time

"Every tree, we know the parents of it on our plantation. And we keep breeding trees and picking out the best," Gloria Sundback said. "We have 'planned parenthood' for Christmas trees."

The ideal tree has a definite needle, deep-green color, strong branches and a consistent angle and length of branches from the trunk of the tree, she said.

Sundbacks: Older Than 80 and Still Planting, Pruning

Eric and Gloria Sundback said they weren't able to do as much field work as they used to in their younger days, but that isn't stopping them from planting more. They love the spirit of Christmas, they said.


And despite his look, Gloria Sundback said, her husband is not exactly trying to look like Santa Clause.

"Everybody thinks he has that beard for his business," she said. "But the truth of the matter is that Eric -- the first generation of a Swedish family -- sunburns terribly bad: one big blister. ... So, in 1968, when the pruning season started, he grew a beard to cover part of his face from the sun."

He has had the beard ever since.

ABC News' David Wright and Sally Hawkins contributed to this report.

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