So you've seen all the articles on alternative Christmas trees (4 Modern Alternatives, 7 Bizarre Alternatives) but just couldn't do without the warm pine scent and the ornament adorned greenery. That's fine! Just know that there are alternatives to leaving it on the curb when you're done. The 72' tree at Rockefeller Center (pictured above) will be donated to Habitat for Humanity to provide wood for housing projects, for the second year in a row. Even the Vatican is going green by recycling their tree from St. Peter's Square to make toys for children. Others are recycling trees into vaccines, and even dune restoration.
While maybe your tree's not big enough to make wood for housing projects, you should know about treecycling - the act of recycling your Christmas trees so that they can be turned into compost or mulch. Christmas trees are recycled for five main types of large-scale uses for post-harvest trees. From Earth911, these are:
- Chipping (chippings are used for various things from mulch to hiking trails)
- Beachfront erosion prevention
- Lake and river shoreline stabilization
- Fish habitat
- River delta sedimentation management