O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree — how dry are thy branches after awhile.
It wouldn’t be Christmas without a fresh fir, but the day will eventually come when it’s time to kick it to the curb. After gifts are opened and the holidays are celebrated, merrymakers should remove real Christmas trees from inside the home when the evergreen becomes overly dry to the touch, for safety’s sake.
Doug Hundley, a spokesperson for the National Christmas Tree Association, told Fox News that this is generally the best time to dispose of a tree, but he urged homeowners to not just haul it to the trash.
“Most, if not all, county and city governments offer real Christmas tree pick-up or drop-off locations,” Hundley said. “They will all be either recycled by chipping into mulch or reused for wildlife habitats. If you live in a rural area you can burn it or let it biodegrade outdoors in a brush pile.”
If burning a tree, however, Hundley urged caution.
“Avoid burning a used Christmas tree in a wood stove or fireplace,” he said. “They can burn too hot and possibly cause chimney fires.”
Speaking on behalf of the national trade association for the Christmas tree industry, Hundley explained why real trees are the most environmentally-friendly festive firs.
“They absorb and store carbon dioxide as they grow, and are totally bio-degradable when disposed,” he said. “After reusing, chipping or burning, they return to soil in a very short time. They have three to ten times less of a carbon footprint compared to a typical plastic artificial tree.”
And as Christmas connoisseurs know well, real evergreen trees, garlands, and wreaths “fit naturally into the history of Christmas and winter solstice celebrations over thousands of years of history.”
Can’t bear the idea of saying goodbye to your festive fir so soon? Offering a pro tip for extending the life of your tree, Hundley recommended cutting off ½ inch of the trunk before bringing it inside your home to open the cambium layer of the bark.
Christmas trees can be recycled as mulch or wildlife habitat, in some areas they can be burned