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  • Writer's pictureTeam Backcountry

Next Level Tree Trimmings

Five Earth-friendly things to do with your leftover tree trimmings.

If a live Christmas tree is your thing, know that putting ornaments and lights on it oftentimes comes after you've had to cut a little off of the top and sides to make it fit in your space. Before you ditch the extra (we suggest composting them), here are five ways to fully use your tree trimmings this holiday season!


Skip the Plastic Bow

Instead of spending extra money on those plastic bows that will end up in the trash, use jute or cotton twine and a sprig from the tree for a rustic and woodsy touch. (We also love the idea of using recyclable kraft paper or reusable wrapping like scarves).



Spread that fresh Christmas tree scent throughout your home by simmering those tree trimmings on your stovetop in hot water. Turn the holiday cheer up a notch and add cloves, sliced orange, cranberries, or cinnamon!

Directions: Fill a small saucepan with water, bring to a boil, add ingredients, and continue to boil for a few minutes. After a few minutes you can turn it down to a simmer, and then just keep an eye on it and add water about every 30 minutes before it gets too low. Enjoy!


Table Décor

No need to splurge on the live garland! Use those bigger or longer trimmings to add a green touch to your tabletop or mantle place.


Napkin Rings

Need a job for the kids? Have them make these easy napkin rings with twine and tree trimmings. Add cinnamon sticks, candy canes, or name tags for a little something extra.


Tara is an Environmental Education Coordinator with the Backcountry Wilderness Area. She was born and raised in both North Carolina and Colorado where she spent a lot of her childhood outside, and now as an “adult” she strives to provide opportunities for today’s kids to do the same! When she’s not finding new adventures and trails to explore with her husband, two little ones, and friends, she’s probably taking pictures of her cat, (Chicken) Nugget Warrior Princess.

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