Disposing of Your Christmas Tree

Recycling logo made of Christmas tree needles

Disposing of Your Christmas Tree

We’re very fortunate to live at a time where respect for our environment is becoming the norm. ‘Reduce, reuse, recycle’ is becoming a way of life for us all. Even a brief search online for how to reuse a Christmas tree can bring up some wonderful ideas like an animal sanctuary or Christmas tree potpourri. (We’re very pleased that rhymes!)

If you prefer to just get rid of it, then dispose of it responsibly. Never burn a Christmas tree. Their needles burn very fast and create showers of burning embers causing a high risk of uncontrollable fire. Instead you should use recycling options to return the tree to the environment in a safer, cleaner and greener way.

If you have a garden and do any composting, then the wood in your Christmas tree is perfect fodder. Get the axe out! Needles can go in the compost too, but they tend to slow the process so you’re better off using the needles as mulch.

Compost heap contained in wooden frame, with garden fork
Man holding a very small, decorated, real Christmas tree in the palm of his hands

In the UK if you have a garden then you’ll likely have a bin for garden (and food) waste and your local authority will have a collection schedule of every couple of weeks or so. It may be different at wintertime so double check online. If you chop or cut your tree into pieces small enough to go into the bin, it will be taken away as usual. It’s important that the lid of these bins remain closed to prevent any scavenging animals getting in and either getting trapped or making a mess of your garden, so if you can’t fit all of your tree in the bin and close the lid, then some of it will have to wait for another collection.

If you don’t have a garden or you don’t want to cut your tree into pieces then you could consider taking it to the local recycling centre yourself. If you’ve been following our guide so far, you will have wrapped your tree in a blanket or tarp to remove it from inside your home, so keep it wrapped to transport it. Recycling centres tend to have long queues at this time of year though and there’s only so many trees they can recycle. Because of this your local centre might only allow access on an appointment basis, which might not have availability for weeks.

Another option is to check the local press and classifieds for a collection service. For a small fee, these services can collect your tree from the kerbside and take it away for you. Just make sure you’re happy they’re disposing of it in a responsible way… because Christmas tree fly-tipping is a thing.

At Fir we’ve streamlined the process and our recycling services will return your tree to the environment and can even include us removing it from inside your home, and tidying up behind us! We use recycling partners that will turn your tree into mulch, which is an excellent natural approach to looking after gardens and growing fields. It provides nutrients, suppresses weeds, retains moisture, deters pests, reduces watering and even protects against ground frost.

Hands in red gloves holding up mulch taken from a large pile

This brings the life cycle of a Christmas tree to a close. Thank you for joining us and, we hope you’ve found this series on Getting the Most Out of Your Real Christmas Tree useful. Your Real Christmas tree will be the star of the show this year for sure!

Merry Christmas!
The Fir Team

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