So you’ve hauled your Christmas tree out of the house, but you don’t live where someone comes and disposes of it for you. So what to do? Someone asked that question on a FaceBook group page recently and it got me thinking, “How does one discard a Christmas tree?” Well, I’ve come up with five ways for you to consider.
Feed it to your goats
Cedar is a known vermifuge for goats. At least that’s what the old-timers tell me. So this year, since we had a cedar tree, we just hauled it out to the barn yard for the goats to eat from as they wished. Once they’ve picked it clean, we will probably cut it up for kindling or burn in our fire pit. That leads me to my next idea.
Have a bon-fire
Friends of ours put their Christmas tree in a fire pit and ignite. Of course, before they strike that match, they make a bunch of calls and invite all their friends over for sledding and hot cocoa. If there is no snow, just singing around the campfire is a great way to celebrate the New Year.
Make fire starters
This is a great project for little people. Have them strip off all the needles and put them in a bucket. They are great at starting fires in the woodstove. If you don’t want too much of a mess, have them tie them in little bundles outside and put in a basket to sit by the hearth. Or, you can spread them out on cookie sheets, drizzle melted paraffin over them to stick them together and then break apart in little bundles.
Cut up for kindling
Cut the small branches off the tree and stack to dry for kindling. Cut the trunk up for firewood, too. You will want to add it to the woodpile for next year as it will need time to dry.
Feed the birds
Stand the tree up in the yard and cover it with bird food ornaments. When I was a kid we would save bottle caps, poke a hole in them with a nail, thread a string through the hole and then fill the cap with a mixture of peanut butter and birdseed. We would hang these on trees in the yard. Or, you could use this recipe for Chickadee Pudding that I found at Green Circle Grove. Instead of cutting the pudding into large cakes for suet feeders, you can cut them into brownie-sized pieces, wrap in ribbons, and hang from your tree. Leave it up through the winter and then dispose of in the spring by one of the above mentioned options.
That’s it for now. How do you discard a Christmas tree? I’d love to hear your ideas.