8 Uses for your Tree After Christmas

Holiday Misc Trees

8 Uses for your Tree After Christmas

By Sheereen Othman | December 29, 2016

The end of Christmas doesn’t have to be the end of life for your living Christmas tree. If you had a real Christmas tree you can extend its life and use beyond the home. Here are 8 ways to responsibly recycle your Christmas tree for other purposes.

  1. Mulch

The most common use for your tree is to make mulch or compost out of it. Whether it’s with the woodchips or needles, mulch is a great way to keep your yard trees healthy and moist during the cold winter season. Pine needles are full of nutrients that enhance the PH of your soil if its more alkaline and allow your soil to breathe without becoming dense and compacted.

2. Wildlife habitat

The tree doesn’t have to be living for wildlife to take over. Hang bird feeders to attract birds and watch your tree evolves into a bird sanctuary. Other critters will soon follow as they nest in the branches of the tree.

3. Fish Feeder

When trees are submerged in water they become a thriving reserve for fish to congregate in. The weight of the tree acts as an anchor, and as time passes algae starts to form on the tree, feeding fish while protecting them from predators. Check with local officials and see if you can drop your tree in a nearby lake or pond.

4. Cut for Firewood

Because most evergreens are heavy sap trees, they work best for firewood when used outdoors. The sap is flammable and creosote build-up can pose as a threat when used indoors. Evergreens tend to burn hot and fast, making them ideal for bonfires.

5. Ash your Garden

After you’ve burned the wood from your tree, gather the ashes and spread them on your garden. Wood ash contains potassium and lime (among other nutrients), which help plants thrive, or mix the ashes into a compost. The ashes are also useful in keeping insects away. Don’t confuse wood ash with coal ash, coal ash does not offer the same benefits.

6. Insulate your Garden

Cut off the branches of your tree and lay them on your garden bed, the boughs will protect your plants from winter freezes and spring thaws. By laying them on your garden you’re giving your plants a steady temperature to brave through the cold months. The limbs also work well as a garden edge.

7. Use as Fresheners

If the needles on your tree are still green, strip the tree and store the needles in paper bags or sachets to use as fresheners. The needles will retain their scent and freshen home year-round.

8. Make Coasters

You don’t have to be a craftsman to cut the trunk into one-inch wood coasters. They’re attractive, practical and protect your wood tables from water damage. Be sure to let the tree completely dry before cutting (or they wood will split) and varnish the coasters before use.

If you have no need for recycling your living tree for home use, then search for a local recycling program that will recycle your tree. Many communities have recycle/reuse programs and offer curbside pickup. Living trees are biodegradable, so no matter how it is used after the holidays, it is sure to benefit the environment.

What is the most popular Christmas tree? Find out here!

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Sheereen Othman

Communications Associate, Marketing Communications

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