Thursday, December 18, 2008

Your Christmas tree can help the environment!

Instead of putting your Christmas tree in the trash after the holiday, put it to good use for the environment.
Sinking your Christmas tree in the pond causes fish to gather in these areas and improve the fishing. Fish can be found hiding in the branches; others feed on aquatic insects found among the branches. Some fish will seek the shade during hot and sunny days.
Grouping three or four trees together to make a larger habitat for your fish is recommended. Young bluegill, crappy and catfish are drawn to these areas to feed and for protection.
Place one large brush pile for every 2-3 acres of water is a good rule. In 10-12 feet of water is the best placement of brush but no deeper, this is as far as small fish will venture. Attaching a stone or cement block to tree will help them to stays vertical in the water.
Other uses include placing your tree near the bird feeder. This protects the birds from predators that prey on them while eating. The tree also protects them from the harsh winter winds. No bird will pass up an evergreen tree to frolic and eat.
Christmas trees are also an excellent source of protection for other wildlife. Place a group of trees in a fence row will protect rabbits, quail and other birds from predators. Placement is important so place them where two habitats come together like a field and a woodlot.

Roger Ort-Horticulture Program Assistant Cornell Cooperative Extension

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