Recycling your trees

Recycling your trees

Unfortunately, trees that pose a danger to power lines, property or people have to be removed. The good news is that this doesn’t have to be the end. Green materials such as trees can be recycled, and doing so helps to ease the burden on our landfills.


Why trees should be recycled

Trees, like other organic materials, will decompose, so you may not be too concerned how they’re disposed of.  The problem is that in landfills, this type of biodegradable waste results in a build-up of methane – one of the most potent greenhouse gases. Reducing the amount of methane produced in landfills will help to combat the effects of global warming.


Repurposing felled trees

If you have a fireplace, you can burn the logs in winter or use them for the braai. Alternatively, if you’re the handy type, you could use the wood for small projects around the house. You could even use the branches to create something decorative and practical for your home.


Tree stumps can also be turned into outdoor side tables, seats and planters. If you use a little imagination and do some Googling, you’ll find hundreds of great ideas for recycling and upcycling the offcuts.


Turning trees into mulch

If you don’t need the wood, the debris can all be fed through a wood chipper. That includes the leaves, branches and twigs. By shredding all this material, trees are turned into one of the one of the best substances you can use in your garden – mulch!


As the organic material in mulch decomposes, it adds vital nutrients back into the soil. It also improves the soil structure, making it dense and porous. In summer, mulch helps the soil retain moisture which means you don’t have to water as often. In the colder months, it helps to maintain a more even soil temperature, protecting delicate plants from cold and frost.


If you decide to replace a felled tree with a new one, adding a layer of mulch will help feed and protect the new sapling. To learn about all the benefits of mulch, see our previous blog – Magical Mulch: Why mulching is the best thing you can do for your trees.


In urban spaces, trees do occasionally have to be removed. You’ll find that any good tree care company will only remove a tree as a last resort. If you find yourself having to make that difficult decision, remember that it doesn’t have to be the end. Trees can be recycled – or tree-cycled, if you like. You could also plant a new tree to replace the one you’ve lost and leave something for the next generation to enjoy.