Create a wildlife haven in your Derbyshire garden by recycling real Christmas tree

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Derbyshire families are invited to recycle their real Christmas tree by turning it into a home for small animals and insects to shelter in during the coldest months of the year.

Whether you’ve got a Nordmann Fir or a Fraser Fir enjoying pride of place in your home, Dobbies store at Barlborough is encouraging you to repurpose your tree once the festivities are over.

Marcus Eyles, horticultural director at Dobbies, has outlined how people can recycle their cut Christmas trees to create a haven for wildlife in winter.

Follow Marcus’s step-by-step guide to making the shelter:

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1. Remove the tree from your house carefully to stop any loose needles from dropping. Wear thick gloves to protect your hands.

2. Using a good quality pair of secateurs, starting from the top remove each branch as close as possible to the main trunk.

3. Stack the branches together four or five pieces high and place onto soil or leaves under large shrubs, trees or hedges.

4. Repeat this process until all the branches are used. This will provide a great shelter for small animals and insects to protect them from the worst of the winter weather. Marcus points out that the needles and branches will breakdown over time to produce organic matter than will enrich the soil.

5. For the main trunk of the tree use a pruning saw to cut into 30cm lengths, which can then be stacked to make a mini log pile which is a great habitat for wildlife to shelter in.

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