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  • 6 Ways to Upcycle Your Tree

    Posted on August 11, 2015 by Pete in Landscaping.

    As a homeowner, you don’t ever want to remove a tree from your yard. You love the aesthetic attributes the tree gives you, not to mention cool shade in the summer, a place to sit and read, and so much more.

    So, when your tree dies, you don’t want it to just become mulch for some other person’s garden or playground. So why not re-purpose your tree into items that you can use and enjoy every day? If you want to preserve the tree from your backyard, use these different tips to up-cycle the wood and create something new.

    1. Use the stump as a planter.

    If the stump hasn’t rotted or decayed, you can re-purpose it as a planter to brighten your yard. When you hire a crew to remove the tree from your yard, ask the manager to leave the stump at planter height. You can also use a chainsaw or other carving equipment to hollow out a bowl shape.

    Once you have adequate space inside the stump, use sandpaper to smooth down the inside. This step will help you avoid splinters or other injuries when you plant inside the stump. Once you even out the interior, fill the space with potting soil and fertilizer.

    Then you can plant whatever fruits, vegetables, or flowers you want.

    2. Build a low tree house.

    You know that the children in your life love to play outside during the summer months. Why not use a portion of your old tree trunk to form a tree house foundation? Find a piece of the trunk that stands no higher than two and a half or three feet tall.

    Roll the section of wood to the designated tree house area and stand it upright on the ground. You can also partially bury the foundation to secure it for your children. Now you can buy or build a small tree house that will rest snugly on top of this wooden base.

    You can also use more wood from your tree to build custom steps that lead to the tree house’s door.

    3. Install a natural curtain rod and brackets.

    Don’t buy a new curtain rod and brackets for your bedroom or living room windows-use the branches from your tree to make these items. Measure the width of each window, and select a medium-sized branch that matches this length. This branch will become your new curtain rod.

    You’ll also want to find smaller, sturdy branches that look like the letter “Y” to use as brackets. Make sure that the gap in these pieces of wood is wide enough to hold the curtain rod firmly in place.

    Visit your local hardware store and purchase nails thick enough to penetrate both the wood in the brackets and your walls. Once you securely nail the bracket in place on each side of your window, place the curtain rod in the brackets. Now you have a natural curtain rod and brackets to accent your window treatments.

    4. Build a walkway.

    You can use branches and tree trunks to build a walkway in your backyard. Simply use a chain saw or other cutting tool to break thick branches into three-inch thick rings. You can either place these rings in any path shape you like, and you can install them from one area of your yard to another.

    If you prefer a more striking walkway in your yard, you can partially bury these wood “stepping stones” in the ground. Just dig up a small amount of earth, place the wood ring into the hole, and replace the dirt until the ring is about half covered.

    You can also surround the wooden ring with smaller stones and pebbles or other stylish decorations of your choice.

    5. Make plant markers.

    If you like to garden, then you know that you’ll have to place markers by each different plant you grow. Gather several medium sized branches, and use a metal scraper to remove a portion of the outer bark from the branch. Then use a wood burner or permanent marker to write plant names on each twig.

    Place each branch in the ground next to the corresponding plant. Now you’ll know exactly which plants you have in your garden this season.

    6. Build a woodland doll house.

    If you have daughters, nieces, or granddaughters, then you know that most girls just love dolls and dollhouses. Why not craft a one-of-a-kind dollhouse for the special child in your life?

    After a contractor removes the tree from the ground, select a decently sized piece of trunk or a thick branch. You can use tools like chisels, chain saws, and other wood carving instruments to fashion a dollhouse from your favorite children’s book. You can even use flat pieces of wood from your old tree to create floors and walls in the dollhouse.

    The next time you remove a tree from your property, try one of these unique tips and upcycle as much of the tree as you can.

    You’ll not only find a new hobby, but you’ll also make and preserve memories for years to come.

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