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Eco-Tips for the Christmas Leftovers - Part 2

Last updated: 04/12/2023

At Go Ape being environmentally responsible is very important to us; regularly litter picking our sites, selecting our materials responsibly, and even choosing carefully what we use to clean the toilet. That’s got us thinking, how can we apply the same principle to all of the Christmas ‘stuff’ that we’ve got laying around?

If you missed it, part one of this blog all about eco-tips for your Christmas leftovers and wrapping paper. Read on for part two where the focus shifts to Christmas trees and sales shopping.


In the UK we buy around 8 million real and 2 million artificial Christmas trees each year! It won’t be long before you won’t want it in your living room anymore, so what’s the best thing to do with it?

Well, if you have an artificial tree then put it back in the box and save it for next year. Modern artificial Christmas trees are made from 100% recycled plastic so if you are going to get rid of them please make sure it gets recycled again.

What about real trees? Check to see if your local council has a recycling service. They’ll shred it into mulch and use it to fertilise the open spaces that they manage. Some garden centres offer this service too and let you keep the mulch for your own garden, either way remember to remove all of the decorations first. Discover some more ways to sustainably dispose of your Christmas tree on the RHS website. 

Disposing of your tree sustainably

An alternative to having your Christmas tree shredded professionally is to do it yourself.

The pines can go into the compost. Gardeners will tell you that the small branches are great for training sapling plants, but we also reckon it’d be fun to build a fort with them and play toy soldiers!

Then you are left with the log which can be cut into sections and used to build a bug hotel, who knows what little critters you might attract into your garden!


Insect Hotel image

Alternative Christmas Trees 

Nowadays, more and more people do not have the space to display a real Christmas tree (or store a reusable one post-Christmas). Or they just want something different!

Why not get creative and think outside of the box? From wall mounted Christmas trees, to birch hanger designs, wooden plank trees and crazy craft paper designs there are so many alternative Christmas tree options. Christmas is a time for traditions but sometimes it can be even more fun to try something new. 

Boxing Day and New Year Sales

According to The Sun newspaper we spent an average of £8.8million a minute on Boxing Day shopping. That’s even more than Black Friday!

Many of us just can’t resist clothes shopping at this time of year. If you’ve just bought or have been given a brand-new wardrobe, then please remember to recycle your old one. Many supermarkets and recycling centres have clothes bins, and if you’re of an outdoor persuasion like us then check out the Alpkit Continuum Project that will give your outdoor kit a second life.

Create a Funky Sock monkey

Let's be honest, we've all got a bundle of old and mismatched socks stuffed at the back of our draws.

This Christmas give those lone socks new life with Craft Passion's easy step-by-step guide to creating a sock monkey

It's great fun, will reduce waste and keep little ones entertained this festive season. What could be better?

Homemade sock monkey waving

Shop more sustainably 

There are so many ways to be more ethical in our purchasing habits and shop more sustainably! Rather than making quick purchases we can do some research into ethical brands and invest in long term pieces. Perhaps you could even switch high-street shops for vintage stores, charity shops or apps like Vinted or Depop. These apps are also a great way to clear out some of the clutter from your wardrobe. 

Check out Oxfam's Guide to Sustainable Shopping to find out more top tips!

Eco-Tips for the Christmas Leftovers - Part 1

Discover eco-tips on how to prevent food, wrapping paper and card waste.

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