Stop! After you remove the ornaments and unwind the lights, don't take your Christmas tree to the curb. Instead, give it a new life.
You can use the trunk and branches as mulch to protect beds of bulbs or perennial flowers from cold.
Or you can do a good deed for wild birds. Place your tree in the backyard and decorate it with orange slices, strings of popcorn, or suet. Kids might enjoy spreading peanut butter on pine cones and sprinkling it liberally with birdseed before hanging the cones on the tree for the birds.
If you have a large, private pond, sink the tree into it to create a refuge for fish.
Source: National Christmas Tree Association
(c) Copyright 1999. The Christian Science Publishing Society