I finally solved my love/hate relationship with my Christmas tree.
The dilemma: I love having a decorated Christmas tree in the house, but I hate to toss the tree in the landfill when the holiday is over.
The solution: Recycle it. Pass it down the food chain by making a tree for your friendly, neighborhood birds.
Make sure the tree is completely free of ornaments, lights, and especially tinsel. Then take it out to your yard, a school playground, or a park. Stand the tree up in a pail filled with stones, or sand, (or water for an ice-base if weather permits); or bring your indoor tree-stand outside.
Trimming a tree for the birds
The trimmings on this tree are limited only by your holiday leftovers and your imagination. These are the favorites of the birds in my back yard:
- pine cones spread with peanut butter and rolled in bird seed (use only natural cones -- no paint or glitter)
- orange halves, hollowed-out and filled with crumbs and seeds
- popcorn and berries on a string
- donut on a string (sandwiched between 2 plastic lids for stability)
- stale bread cut into shapes
- scraps of ribbon and yarn for nesting materials
HINT: For a slightly more manageable project: Do the same thing with your wreath.