Natural Ways to Reuse Your Tree

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As we pack away our ornaments and lights until next Christmas, we've been brainstorming a few ways to enjoy our holiday evergreen a bit longer. Our festive firs are headed outside for new uses in the winter landscape, from bird sanctuaries to fuel for the fire pit. Recently, Field Visual Director Melissa B. shared some creative ways to reuse your tree after Christmas. Read on for her top 5.

Build a Bird Habitat: After removing the decorations, place your tree outside in its stand, preferably near existing bird houses or feeders to provide extra shelter for feathered friends. Hang additional feeders from the branches, or make your own by coating pinecones and dried bagels with peanut butter and seeds. Other DIY feeder ideas include strings of popcorn, cranberries, nuts, and sliced oranges (a favorite of cardinals). If you choose a spot near a window, you can watch the birds come and go all winter long. 

Overwinter the Garden: Pine boughs make great insulation when laid over perennial beds in cold weather, helping to protect the plants from snow and reduce frost heaving. Evergreen needles also make an excellent mulch for ground-covering crops like strawberries. Quick to dry and slow to decompose, they're an all-natural, moisture and mold-free alternative to traditional mulches.

Elevate Your Containers: Trim away the branches and saw the trunk of your tree into different lengths, creating natural risers to add interest in your spring container garden.

Fuel the Fire Pit: Quick to ignite, pine branches make a great starter for outdoor fires. Avoid using them indoors, where creosote build-up can occur. 

Light Up the Landscape: String your tree with simple, white lights and place it outside your window, where its cheerful glow can brighten evenings all winter long.  

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  • MichelleDandelionPatina said...

    Our family reuses our natural Christmas tree by creating a bird habitat every year after the holidays. We pull it outside and embellish it with cranberries, popcorn strands, oranges, birdseed bells, and much more. We even create ice ornaments for the tree! It is so fun seeing wildlife right outside your patio doors.

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