Thursday, January 10, 2013

Recycled Christmas Tree

Recycled Christmas Tree

Last weekend I finally took down the Christmas decorations...and the tree. A sad day, I really wasn't ready for this.
Christmas Tree

I played my new Bing Crosby Christmas album oops, CD I mean. My husband laughed at me, but I play Christmas music when I decorate for the season, so why not when I dismantle it all?

I couldn't see putting the tree in the burn pile or to the road for recycling pick up. I paid money for it, (ok, I got a discount because I bought it at work, but still) and to only use it for a month...well, it seemed like a waste of money.

So, I had Larry put it on the deck off the dining room, stand included. I piled snow around the base like a tree skirt, but also to add weight against the wind. I love it there! The deck has looked so empty since I brought all my tropicals in and this helped fill the space again.
Recycled Christmas Tree Collage

I've seen pine cones used as bird suet feeders and thought it was such a sweet idea. I figured they'd look awesome hanging on the tree outside the doors so I used the ones I had left over from Christmas.
I love the natural bokeh created from the sunlight streaming in the kitchen window. 
(I didn't end up doing anything with those red leaves.)

I had a lot of baking supplies left over so I searched for bird friendly ingredients to add to the suet. 
I put equal amounts of vegetable shortening and chunky peanut butter over low heat. 

When melted I added the oatmeal, graham cracker crumbs... 

...raisins, frozen blueberries, chopped dried apricots, chopped unsalted cashews and mixed well.

I put the pot on the deck in the snow to speed up the cooling process.

Pinecones with Bokeh @Dewdrop Gardens
In the meantime, I tied string around the large pinecones. They still had their stems attached, bonus!
More bokeh, love how it looks!

Home Made Suet on Pinecones @DewdropGardens
Time to smear the pine cones with the suet. I made sure to push it inside, 
there was a lot of room in the large ones. 

Not as much fit in the small ones, but they look cute and already had ties on them for decorating. The leftover suet I shaped into a square to fit in the suet holder I have. That will hang on the shepherd's hook in the garden beside the Frazier fir. 

Time to hang them up! (ok, I'm sloppy...yes I got some suet on the branches)

I don't think I'll get many birds if the cats keep hanging around the tree. lol

The one picture you can see Pepsy sitting on the 'cat tree' inside the dining room door. 
Hopefully the birds won't see him and still visit. 

We had to move the feeders and bird baths behind the new fence  last summer because the chickens like scratching under them. But they also like scratching for bugs in the gardens and were destroying too much around the courtyard, hence the feeders had to be moved. Since they are farther from the house, it will be nice to have this close so I can see them while sitting at the table.

Now all there is to do is wait...

Home Made Suet in Holder @ Dewdrop Gardens
Total cost of this project? Zero!! I used items I had lying around.

Did you use a real tree? If so, did you do something different with it when it was time to come down? 

My tree was featured at:

New House New Home New Life

I'm sharing with:

The Shabby Creek Cottage - Transformation Thursday           Tilly's Nest - Down Home Blog Hop

All Star Block Party -                                                                 My Turn (for us) - Freedom Fridays
 New House, New Home
 Nutmeg Place
 In The Old Road

StoneGable - Tutorials, Tips and Tidbits                                 Serenity Now - Weekend Bloggy Reading

Power of Pinterest -
Fox Hollow Cottage


  1. what a clever idea!! we don't have enough snow here to do something so fun :(

  2. What a great idea I love it ! I bet you will get loads of little birdies . Our snow now is almost gone except for the thick piles of snow but they are gradually melting ! Lovely photos ! Have a good day !

  3. Very clever! I bet those birds are going to just love it!

  4. How neat! Hope you get some birds to come. Enjoy! Nancy

    1. Thanks Nancy! Nothing yet, hope they find it soon.
      Debbie :)

  5. Such a fabulous project. The birds will continue to enjoy the feeders you put there for them, plus they get some extra protection for the weather. You get to enjoy the tree outside for a longer period of time.

  6. I wanted to set my tree up somewhere too - what a brilliant idea with the pine combs Debbie - absolutely brilliant!!!

  7. I love that you reused your tree! What a great idea! I listen to Bing Crosby when I set up and take down the tree too! :) We had a really hard time getting rid of ours as well. It was such a beautiful tree! Now I know what to do next year. :)

  8. First, let me thank you for visiting me - and for your sweet comments. Glad I could then find you!!

    Second, I TOO listened to my Christmas CDS when taking the Christmas stuff down - I agree, why not? Plus it takes forever, so it was a good time to listen one last time.
    My CDS always go on top of the last box to go down to the basement. It seems much too soon to put things away this year. Just getting older, I guess!

    Third, LOVE the idea of your real tree being on the deck - why not? It will stay nice for a long time out there, especially if you sprintz it with water!

    Fourth - brilliant ideas on the suet and pinecones project. Thanks for the idea. I need to do that here at Finch Rest - don't have my finches but there's a ton of birds out there who like to EAT!!

    And lastly, may I suggest you take this to Rattlebridge Farm's Tutorials, Tips and Tidbits? It is perfect for that linky party! It posted yesterday, but is still open and gets lots of viewers - think how much the birds would appreciate even that many more peeps making suet out there with your great idea!

    Take care, hope to see you again soon at Finch Rest. ~ Michele

  9. Great minds think alike .. I put lights on our tree as well and it looks great shining in the kitchen window at night.

    1. I never thought to put outdoor lights on it, that is something I'll keep in mind for next year! I'll bet it does look great. Wonderful idea. :)

  10. I love that this is a free upcycle. Such a fun idea!

  11. Our tree was very much ready to be taken down, which we did the first weekend after New Years. It was super dry and I was scared my fiance would turn on the lights and it would catch fire! So I unplugged it before hand and made him take it out as soon as I got everything off of it.

    I love birds. I have a parrot and want to have some chickens when we finally get a house. I always mean to put up a bird feeder, but haven't gotten around to it.

    1. Good think you took it down when you did. Did you remember to top up the water every day, and did you put a fresh cut on it before you put it up in your home? Those are important and really do help your tree stay fresher longer.
      Debbie :)

  12. I love this idea!

    And thanks for dropping by my blog!

    Happy Friday!!!

  13. Wow! I love this idea! I will totally be doing this next year!

    1. Thanks, and the birds will thank you! :)

  14. i did this last year with the grandkids and within 1 day, the SQUIRRELS licked some and then stold all the pine cones..mind you it was hilarious watching them, the kiddies were screaming with laughter...

    1. lol I bet the girls had fun! It must have been worth it just to see their reaction. :)

  15. This is a great idea! I will have to try this next year as my tree is already gone. It was very dry and probably a fire hazard.

  16. What a great way to save the tree, it looks awesome out there!

  17. Hi Debbie,
    What a great idea and a beautiful tree! A nice new focal point for your deck during the rest of the winter. The birds will be so happy! Visiting you today via Stone Gable linky party have joined you as a new follower! I live in Ontario as well!
    Have a great January thaw weekend ;0)
    All the Best,

  18. What a great idea!! I love it and the recipe to make it also was so simple I will have to make something like this! Thanks for stopping by my blog :)

  19. What a great idea! =)

    Do you think you'll be feeding the birds (with bird feed) and the cat (with birds) at the same time? Ha ha, just kidding!

  20. I love this idea! So nice to find another Ontario blogger and I'm your newest follower through GFC. I'm wondering where you got your Canadian blogger badge because I'd love to have that on my sidebar too. Thanks so much for pinning my Valentines wreath. I'm pinning this to use next year.
    Tuula :)

  21. What a beautiful thing you have done for our feathered friends!!!

  22. The birds in your neighborhood must be so happy! What a wonderful idea!


  23. This is awesome, Deb.!! Featuring it today at the All Star Block Party.


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