Put your Christmas tree to good use instead of taking it down to the tip this year. Most of the six million real trees bought in this country each year end up in landfill – but we’re missing a trick. There are dozens of ways you can turn your real Christmas tree into gardening treasure instead - here are a few of our favourites!
Use the needles for mulch – acid-loving plants like blueberries and rhododendrons love them as they lower the soil’s pH while they rot down. They’ll keep the weeds out, too.
Slice the trunk into ½ inch rounds to make pretty rustic-looking coasters or decorations for next year (drill a hole in the top and thread a ribbon through). Paint with wood stain or varnish for an attractive finish.
Make a log pile from thicker branches and trunks. Cut to equal lengths and stack somewhere cool and damp. They’ll quickly be colonised by frogs, toads and ground beetles.
Make pea sticks out of the twiggy branch ends – the rough, rugged surface of Christmas tree branches is perfect for climbing tendrils to grab hold of.
Next year buy a rooted Christmas tree – that way you can plant it out in the garden after Christmas for a handsome evergreen feature.