Pest-Free Christmas Tree Disposal

The holiday season is finally here! With it comes warm fires, carols, twinkling lights, and jovial cheer. For many, the beginning of December starts the hunt for the perfect Christmas tree to decorate with the family.

There are many important decisions to be made during this time. Real or fake, how big, and what kind? Many opt for real Christmas trees. This is because you really can’t beat the smell of a wonderful fir, pine, or spruce tree. Is there really any smell that signifies the start of the holiday season more than a real Christmas tree?

When opting for a real tree over a fake one, you must figure out what you’re going to do with your tree after Christmas. It’s also important to note that before that tree was a part of your living room décor, it was grown outdoors. That means there’s a very real possibility that bugs and other creepy crawlies were using it as their home before it entered yours.

If you’re not careful when it comes to Christmas tree disposal, those insects may decide to stay inside your home. You want to make sure they follow the tree to the trash pile.

Never fear! Terminix Canada is here to give you top-notch regarding pest-free Christmas tree disposal.

How To Get Rid Of Christmas Tree Bugs

Before it comes time for Christmas tree disposal, it’s important you don’t bring bugs into your home when bringing the tree in. This means taking certain precautions at the start of the season.

These gross bugs can range from microscopic aphids to spiders, to even praying mantises.

Christmas tree bug prevention can be as easy as shaking your tree outside. Give it a good shake until you’re certain that it contains no more creepy crawlies or their eggs. This also benefits your home by removing any loose pine needles, helping to contribute to less mess come Christmas morning.

It’s also a good idea to store your chosen tree in your garage for a few days, if possible. This will allow any eggs on the tree to have a chance to hatch in the garage, instead of your home.

Keep Your Home Pest-Free With Our Christmas Tree Disposal Tips

When Christmas has come and gone, it’s time to store away your holiday decorations. It’s also time to drag your tree to the curb. During this stage, any remaining eggs or bugs can get dislodged from the tree and fall onto your floor. To help prevent this from happening, you should lay a tarp on your floor, following the path you’ll be taking out the door. Once the tree is removed, the tarp can either be taken outside and shook, or thrown out.

Even after the tarp has been shaken or tossed, it’s a good idea to dust and vacuum the entire living room. This will get rid of any eggs that may have escaped the tree or tarp. This step should be done immediately after disposing of the tree. If you wait too long, you’ll give the eggs a chance to hatch or the bugs a chance to creep away.

Alternative Methods Of Christmas Tree Disposal

For many, Christmas trees are dragged to the curb to go out with the garbage. However, if you’re looking for other options for Christmas tree disposal that might benefit others, keep reading! Below we’ve gathered some different options available all over the country that help outdoor animals keep warm, bring joy to the public, or raise money for charities.

Help The Birds

According to the Nature Conservancy of Canada, leaving your Christmas tree in your backyard can do a lot to help birds survive a cold winter. You can prop the tree up against another tree, a back fence, or even lay it down in your garden. This will give them shelter and help keep them warm. In the last 50 years, we’ve lost 2.9 billion birds to climate change, loss of habitat, and cats, so any bit of help they can get is a good thing.

Additionally, come springtime, the tree branches and trunk provide a good environment for wildflowers as the tree holds moisture and helps build soil. This essentially mimics what happens in nature when trees die and go back to the soil. Additionally, the logs provide shelter for toads, and pollinators such as carpenter bees can burrow in the wood.

If you decide to go this route, it’s important that you put the tree in the far back of your yard, away from your house. You don’t want these birds or bees making a nest in or around your home, therefore this might not be the right option for those with a smaller yard.

Donate The Tree

Depending on where you live, there may be organizations that will take the tree off your hands. For instance, if you live in Ottawa, you can donate your Christmas tree to be put on display at the Rideau Canal Skateway. Every year, the National Capital Commission receives more than 1,200 trees. After the trees are used, they are chipped and composted.

Additionally, some non-profits offer Christmas tree pickup in exchange for a small donation. In some locations, Boy Scout troops will offer Christmas tree pickup for a donation. You’ll have to call around to your local charities and see if any are offering this program.

Some cities offer tree-chipping events, with the money often going to charity as well. This is a great option if you are looking for an environmentally friendly way to dispose of your Christmas tree.

Turn Them Into Firewood Or Mulch

A great way to reuse your Christmas tree is to make mulch or compost out of it. You can utilize both the woodchips and the needles to help keep your yard trees healthy during the winter. Pine needles contain tons of nutrients, and they enhance the PH of your soil, to allow it to breathe without becoming compacted or dense.

If used for firewood, woodchips should only be used outdoors as evergreen trees contain lots of sap so are prone to creosote build-up. These trunks should be left to dry out for a few months before cutting or lighting on fire, to help dry out the sap. Evergreens often burn very hot and quickly, making them ideal for outdoor bonfires.

However You Choose To Dispose Of Your Christmas Tree…

It’s important that you always do so safely, without breaking any of your municipality’s laws or regulations. Before donating, throwing away, or putting outside for the birds, it’s important that you remove all the decorations. You don’t want to leave any garbage behind. 

By following the above tips for the setup and removal of your tree from your home, you can ensure a safe, happy, and pest-free Christmas celebration.

For a rodent-free holiday season, check out our top five tips here.

If you need help with insect control, wildlife control, or any other pest plaguing you, Terminix Canada can help. Our expert team of pest control specialists offers effective, and affordable integrated pest control solutions. This helps to ensure that your pest problems buzz off for good.

Find your local Terminix Canada branch or give us a call at 1-888-801-6348 today. We will help you find the right pest control solutions for your individual needs.