We take great pride in growing our Christmas trees sustainably. The Christmas trees are planted and can be left in the ground anywhere from 7 to 15 years, sometimes even longer. The trees grow around a foot a year very much dependant on the weather, here in Rutland we don’t really get enough rainfall so some year’s they don’t grow very much at all! As trees are sold and removed from one area more transplants (young Christmas trees) are planted elsewhere, on average 2 new trees are planted for every one sold. As the trees are in the ground for long periods of time, they are taking in carbon dioxide and giving out oxygen which all helps the environment whilst improving the habitat for the local flora and fauna. It doesn’t stop once the trees are harvested either the next stage is recycling!
Digby Farm has a small licenced green waste facility where we are able to shred and compost green waste including the Christmas trees. Every year in January we open the gates to allow people to return their Christmas trees to us to recycle, you don’t even need to have bought your Christmas tree from us, just make sure it has all its decorations removed and we will take it.
After the festive season, the yard will be open from the 27th December 2023 for you to drop your real Christmas tree off. You don’t need to tell us, we have a pile in the yard labelled for tree recycling just drop it there, the gates will be open 10am – 4pm every day except Sunday’s but if you do happen to turn up and the gates are closed or you can only drop off outside of these hours then do just put your tree over the gates and we will collect them from there.
For 2023, we will again have the Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust with us on Saturday 25th and Sunday 26th November, and the Saturday 2nd and Sunday 3rd of December with their pop-up stall full of information on local wildlife.
Since planting the Christmas trees in 1986 we have seen a big increase in wildlife on the farm. We have everything from rabbits, badgers, foxes to muntjac and roe deer to name a few. We also see a lot of birds including pheasants, partridges, green woodpeckers, woodcock and birds of prey.
We actively encourage wildlife and birds by putting out nesting boxes and feeding stations as well as perches in the trees for birds.
We are working at planting other valuable trees and flora to enhance the natural environment. We have replanted hedgerows and leave areas to grass for the soil to recover once a plot of trees is cleared. We are looking at ways to incorporate wildflower areas to encourage more insects and wildlife. There is much to do and we are learning all the time!