While we at Balsam Hill love the ease and perfection of artificial wreaths, we know that many people choose to decorate with a combination of real and artificial foliage. Once the holiday season is over, the artificial wreaths can be stored for the season, but it seems a shame to simply throw out natural wreaths. So we’ve come up with some fun and useful recycling ideas for these Christmas decorations.
Whether it’s for crafts or as nourishment for other plants, Christmas wreaths are useful and can be reused or recycled in a number of ways. Repurposing them is not only a great way to make the most out of your initial investment, it’s also environmentally friendly.
Before you begin any of these wreath projects, start by taking out the decorations. Any ornaments, pine cones, or bows can be saved for use on a fresh wreath next holiday season.
Here are some of our favorite ways to recycle and reuse wreaths:
Reuse the Florist’s Wire
Most natural wreaths are made by using florist’s wire to secure branches and foliage to a round metal frame. If you find the end of the wire, you can easily unwind it from around the wreath. Once you have all of it off, wrap it around a spool or dowel for easy access – it’ll be ready for use with new craft projects or next year’s wreath.
Reuse or Recycle the Metal Frame
After you’ve removed the wire, the branches and foliage should freely come off of the metal ring inside your wreath. This metal form can be used for wreath projects for any season by securing branches, leaves, flowers, or seasonal decor to it. Alternately, if DIY isn’t your cup of tea, most uncoated metal rings are recyclable and can be put out with your bottles and cans.
Compost the Foliage
Once you’ve taken the wire and frame, what remains is the natural greenery. This can be used as fuel for a pine scented fire, composted to provide nutrients for your garden, or mulched for decorative use in flower beds.
Take it to the Experts
If you don’t have the time to break down your wreath on your own, get in touch with your local recycling center to see if they accept Christmas foliage. Most will have a schedule of when trees and wreaths can be dropped off.
Call in the Troops
There are often groups within the community that recycle Christmas trees and wreaths. In many areas, the Boy Scouts run these programs annually, so check online and see if your local troop is running a recycling drive this year.