Recycle your tree at Fort Macon this season and help prevent erosion

(Photo: Nate Belt)

FORT MACON, Carteret County - The beach and Christmas trees are two things you don't see together very often, but it turns out the tree in your home from the holidays could help build sand dunes in ENC.

"We put them out there when we have erosion in some spots in the dunes," Park Ranger Randy Newman of Fort Macon State Park said. "They basically catch sand like a sand fence or snow fence."

Your Christmas tree can also help make your summers more enjoyable by keeping our beaches healthy and beautiful.

"They also give nutrients to the soil since its such a sandy area," Newman said. "Birds will also fly into them and do droppings which puts the seeds in there for them so the grass starts to grow pretty quick after the dunes are out there and the trees are buried by the wind."

All you have to do is bring your undecorated tree to either parking lot at Fort Macon State Park, both of which have designated drop areas. You can drop your tree off anytime through January 28.

Bringing them there also helps keep trees out of landfills -- something Newman thinks is equally as important.

"That stuff can be recycled back into the soil so anytime we can keep a tree out of a landfill that makes the landfills last so much longer," Newman said.

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