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Christmas Is Over, What Should You Do With Your Tree?


Kailey Foster: The New York Times has reported a 50% increase in live Christmas tree sales in the United States due to more people staying home this holiday season. Now that Christmas is over, what should you be doing with your tree? USU extension forester Dr. Mike Kuhns joins me today to answer this question. 

How long might your Christmas tree last?


Mike Kuhns: It’s important to realize that when you get a real tree, it's a live thing. As long as it's using water, when it's in your stand, then you are safe to keep it. If you like to have your tree past the first of the year, there's no problem with that.


KF: For those of us wanting to take our trees down, what should we do with them?


MK: Cities and counties that have operating landfills are trying to keep material like that out of the landfill. Most cities and counties with landfills have a drop off and pickup available in neighborhoods. You can drag it there or put it on your car and leave it on the pile. Then they will grind up all of the trees they get and mix it with other green, live materials and maybe some soil to make compost. So even though the city picks up the trees, they don't leave them in the landfill. 

Another thing to do is take it outside and put it somewhere quiet in the yard. Put it somewhere that you can watch it because you'll get some birds that will use it for cover and feed on things that are on it. Then, come spring, you can cut it up with pruners and put it in your green waste bin. Or even just cut up the branches into small pieces and use them as part of what you mulch your other trees and shrubs with


KF: Where can we go to find more information on this?


MK: You certainly can go to our Christmas tree articles on our extension forestry website. The best way to find those is to do a web search. I just did one on  with Christmas tree and my last name,


KF: Thanks for joining me this week for USU extension highlights, and be sure to tune in for more next week.