A Christmas Tree for Living Things + DIY Bird Feeders

One of my best memories as a child was the beautifully decorated Christmas Tree at my parents’ house. It smelled good and fresh and I loved laying down under the tree looking through its branches and lights. The Christmas Tree is also one of my saddest memories, if I think of the day when we had to throw away the dried, lifeless tree.

My husband and I never had a Christmas tree in our home but last year when our daughter was old enough to decorate a Christmas tree we have asked ourselves if we want to buy a cut tree or not.

We found an alternative by buying a Christmas tree with roots in a local Botanic School. We kept it a couple of days inside and decorated it. Then planted it in a pot outside. The tree has grown bigger and bigger and became of interest for birds, squirrels and mice that visit our garden.

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Now that this little pine tree lives on our terrace, we can enjoy it the whole year round and especially at Christmas time. This year we have decorated it with fairy lights for outdoors. Our little tree is placed under a very old evergreen tree that makes beautiful (but very poisonous) red berries. These berries felt on our Christmas tree and naturally decorated it all in red. The berries are not edible for humans but they are for birds, squirrels and mice.

Seeing how beloved is our little tree by the animals in our garden we have decided to make it a Christmas Tree for all the living things and we have prepared some bird feeders (that squirrels and mice find delicious too)

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We have placed nuts and hazelnuts under the tree.

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DIY Bird Feeders

Our Bird Feeders are very easy to make. We used:

  • pinecones that we have gathered during our nature walks

  • organic coconut oil

  • organic seeds ( sunflower seeds, flax seeds, etc…)

  • biodegradable ribbon

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If you want to give it a try, here are the 4 steps to make them:

  • First, bring the coconut oil to a liquid state (if it’s not liquid already) by heating it a little bit, very slowly in a saucepan

  • Knot the little ribbons around the pinecones and then for each pinecone knot together the other two sides of the ribbons so that you can hang the pinecones on the branches of the tree

  • Pour coconut oil on the pinecones and try to have some inside the pinecone too

  • Roll the pinecones into the seeds and let the pinecones dry and the coconut oil solidify

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The Bird Feeders are ready. You can hang them on your little Christmas Tree and enjoy watching the birds that will visit them.

I definitely encourage you to buy a little pine tree with roots so that you can use it every year but if this is not your choice and you would like to make a Christmas Tree for animals and birds, here is another idea.

We did this with our Forest Playgroup last year. We gathered together and made bird feeders. We also brought carrots and apples. We all walked together into the woods in the evening with candles and lanterns. The children chose a little pine tree. We decorated it for the birds and the animals of the woods with the bird feeders and placed apples, carrots, seeds and nuts on the ground. Then we all sat in a circle and had a hot drink and some cookies. One mom read a Waldorf-inspired story about pine trees and then we all sung some Christmas songs. Another mom asked who has a Christmas Tree at home. Interestingly, all children said they didn’t wanted a tree to be cut and placed in their homes. We went back all happy and feeling grateful that the little pine tree was not cut, but instead, it became a feeder for the living things of the forest.

Wishing you all a beautiful Christmas,

Cristina