After seeing all of the suggestions for utilizing Christmas trees after the holidays, our family set the tree in our backyard and crafted a variety of treats for birds to hang as ornaments. In addition to helping provide the birds with some extra protein and nourishment in the wintertime, the tree offers a small amount of additional shelter, and extra material for building nests.
For the ornaments, we made:
– Pine cones covered in peanut butter and dipped in birdseed
– Strings of apple and orange slices
– A hanging apple bowl with birdseed and fruit chunks
– Suet chunks covered in extra birdseed (YUM)
– Hanging Spanish moss as tinsel (for extra nesting material)
We have been looking into methods for helping birds and other pollinators thrive in our area, and have implemented some of the tips in our own backyard. Here, we collected an assortment of nearby plant materials, including fallen pine needles, leaves, twigs, and dried plant seeds, to offer as readily available nesting materials for our birds.
We made sure to cut each of the pieces into smaller, more manageable sizes, and placed them in holders at the end of the yard. With the first, we used a basket from a local thrift store, and placed it in a slightly protected area between some low plants. With the second, we filled an old suet feeder, giving a more raised option to obtain materials amongst some of the other plants.
Since we live in an area with a warmer climate, we do hope this will offer some help to our birds through the winter, especially since materials become slightly more scarce as trees lose their foliage.