How To Repurpose Dead Trees In Your Backyard

If you have a dead tree in your backyard, then you may be able to repurpose it in a range of ways. Whether you want to find a simple solution or are interested in a larger project, you might be left with something unexpected yet amazing, from decorative pieces to functional items. So, before you call a tree service to remove the tree, you may want to see if it's really something to get rid of.

There are a few reasons why you might need to have a dead tree dealt with instead of simply leaving it. For instance, if the tree was diseased it should be taken away so that the issue doesn't spread, while one that's weak also needs to go as it might fall over. The same applies to a tree that's attracting unpleasant pests like ants, termites, and even rats. That's not to mention the fact that a dead tree might end up becoming a major eyesore. Of course, if the only issue with the dead tree is that it's not exactly attractive, then you may be able to cut it down and turn what you're left with it into something practical, beautiful, or whimsical.

Pop branches in a vase

Why not place a branch or two into a vase instead of traditional flowers as an easy yet effective way to add a naturally artistic touch to your home décor. If those branches happen to be from a tree that used to stand in your backyard, it will make the set-up even more special.

Create a branch light

Put some simple D.I.Y. work into action and you can end up with a very cool-looking branch light. Just purchase the bulbs and wiring and then attach to a branch from your dead tree in your own unique and intricate way, or you can simply twist them around the branch until you're satisfied with the random result.

Make branches into racks

Utilize the strongest branches that were once a part of your now-dead tree by bringing them indoors and turning them into versatile racks, which will be great for hanging up your clothes and accessories. Just remove any bark and rough bits from the branch before you hang it in place and secure it using wires or brackets.

Make a rustic shelf

Keep the natural vibe going in your home by also using pieces of your dead tree to create new shelves. They can be ass short or as long as you need, and you could also paint the wood and decorate it in a variety of ways. Or, you could leave it raw for a rustic look.

Make serving plates

If you spot sections of the dead tree trunk as well as larger branches that are rather attractive, then you may want to save them and have them cut into smaller, thin pieces. Give them a good cleaning, dry them out, and treat them against moisture if necessary to make rustic serving plates, trays, or charcuterie boards.

Turn it into a table

You may think that you need to fully remove a dead tree, which might be true if it's diseased. However, if you're able to keep the stump, then you can put it to good use. By making sure that the top is level and relatively smooth, then you can turn it into a useful outdoor table.

Make it into a chair

Give yourself a place to sit and relax while enjoying your backyard by making a chair or bench out of your dead tree. Some tree trunks will naturally lend themselves to the purpose thanks to their shape, but you can also adjust them by trimming them to shape, adding a backrest, sanding, and painting as needed.

D.I.Y. a fire pit

Get rid of the remaining stump from your dead tree while enjoying a nice backyard fire. Although may want to check your local laws around open flames, and need to ensure you take adequate safety precautions, you can use the Swedish torch method to split the stump down the middle and set it alight.

Create a patio or path

You'll be able to remember that tree that once stood in your yard every time to walk into your garden. A unique path or patio that can be formed from its trunk. Use all sizes that are each cut to generally the same width and place them in a design or pattern that suits your backyard.

Let animals move in

A dead tree could also become a home to a range of wonderful wildlife, from chipmunks and squirrels to turtles, frogs, and salamanders. That's not to mention countless birds like chickadees, sparrows, woodpeckers, owls, and many more. Just remove any problematic parts of the tree and then leave it be for the wildlife to move in.

Make a pollinator house

You can help the pollinators in your neighborhood thrive by turning your dead tree into a bee or butterfly house. You can either use smaller pieces of the tree to design and build a separate house, or you can put holes in the branches and trunk to give the flying friends a place to tuck into.

Add a birdfeeder

To invite nature into your yard and enjoy the lovely sight and cheerful sound of birds visiting by installing a nesting box or feeder. All you need to do is mount one securely to the side of a dead tree that can still support the weight, or pop it securely on top of the tree's leftover stump.

Let it grow mushrooms

The animals that move in — or ones that are simply passing by — may enjoy nibbling on mushrooms that can be grown on a dead tree stump. The snack can provide needed nutrition for birds, squirrels, and turtles, while deer rely on mushrooms in winter to give their diet a boost when not much else is around.

Encourage moss to grow

There are plenty of reasons why you may want moss to grow in your backyard. On top of the fact that it's gorgeous and turns a dull space into a magical spot, it can also soak up toxins in the area. This gives other plants, and a multitude of insects, a chance to grow and flourish.

Use pieces for a fence

Even if you need to throw some parts of your dead tree away, you can use as many pieces as possible to put up as a sturdy fence. The thicker, stronger branches would be ideal for fence posts, which can be secured vertically in the ground, before the smaller and thinner ones are attached horizontally.

Create a log garden wall

The dead tree in your backyard can be turned into logs of all sizes which you can then use to create a wall around your garden. These homemade logs can either be all the same shape and sanded to perfection, or you can opt for various sizes to create a rough and natural outdoor theme.

Chop it into firewood

If you want to get rid of the dead tree in your backyard while also not wasting it, then you can chop it into firewood. You should be sure it's safe to burn and store it properly, but if you do, then you should have plenty of wood to fuel your fire for quite a while.

Turn it into mulch

If you don't need any firewood, then you might want to turn your dead tree into garden mulch. The tiny woodchips can be used around your garden or at the base of your healthy trees. Along with repurposing your old tree, you also save money by making your own mulch, which doesn't cost you a thing.

Make a plant holder

When the bark of a dead tree splits, you have the perfect opportunity to make it a unique plant holder. All you need to do is choose a few favorite blooms and weave them through the bark or place them in any holes that have formed. When the flowers die, you can replace them with fresh blooms.

Make it a play area

Remove any diseased, rotted, or dangerous parts of your dead tree before transforming it into a fun play area for the kids. The natural structure can provide the perfect backdrop for imaginative minds that may want to turn it into a make-believe world, a far-off place, or another time like when dinosaurs roamed the Earth.

Turn it into workout equipment

You can take your home workouts outside but still enjoy both the convenience and privacy of your backyard by using the dead tree as equipment. Use it to practice your balance during a yoga session, turn it into a step during your aerobic exercise, or if it's heavy enough you could use the trunk to substitute as weights.

Create a tree sculpture

Whether you have the artistic ability yourself or want to bring in someone who has the necessary skills, you can create a sculpture out of the dead tree in your backyard. Use the color, shape, and texture of the tree to inspire the piece, or choose something that suits the theme of your garden and outdoor space.

Set up a fairy home

Turn your backyard into a whimsical wonderland by setting up a fairy home in your dead tree. Although it could be something as simple as nailing a miniature door to the trunk, you can also take it as far as you'd like by adding windows, a roof, and even a windmill that can actually move.