Donate old Christmas trees to help save creeks in Hamilton and Burlington


Published December 28, 2022 at 11:32 am

Now that Christmas is over, the idea of disposing of your Christmas tree can be a chore for Burlington residents. It seems like such a waste to just throw it in the garbage.

Well, the Royal Botanical Gardens has an option for you.

RBG is in need of up to 2,000 used Christmas trees to help rebuild channels at the mouth of Grindstone Creek, channels that have disappeared since the invasive, non-native common carp have been prevalent in Hamilton Harbour.

Rebuilding the creek channel allows RBG to work towards restoring the floodplain ponds by protecting them from the destructive activity of carp. This facilitates the regrowth of marsh plants creating habitat for native fish and wildlife.

Old Christmas trees are an ideal building block for these areas with fluctuating water levels. They sit on top of the unconsolidated mud without sinking into it. However, when they are packed down tight they create a barrier to fish.

As time passes, the old trees break down and compress further. RBG adds new trees to the top to maintain berm heights that will protect the floodplain ponds during high water levels.

Since this project began, more than 175,000 trees have been repurposed and placed into the banks of the Chedoke and Grindstone Creeks.

The placement of trees also helps by creating essential habitat for birds, mammals, insects, reptiles, amphibians and most importantly a strong soil bed where native plants can take root and begin to sprout! What life have you seen around the berms as of late?

You can drop off your trees, cleared of all decorations and ties, by Jan. 9. Specific drop-off instructions and location details will be provided via email to registrants.

To register to donate your tree, visit the RBG website.

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