I must admit I always get sad when I drive past Christmas tree lots right before and after the holiday. The trees, no matter how big and beautiful or small and Charlie Brown-like look so lonely. They were chopped down hoping to have a holiday home, yet it never happened.

Then there are the real trees we spent quality time around in our homes for the holiday season. The love we spent decorating them, opening gifts around, and even sitting silently in the dark while the lights beamed brightly from our tree as we contemplated 2023.

You can tell I'm feeling some emotion like so many of us are heading into a new year. So I had to find out what happens to the homeless trees as well as the ones that play such an important role every holiday season.

Unused Christmas Trees

From firs and pines to spruce trees, all of the unsold evergreens get chopped up and ground up, then fed to plants and livestock on farms according to USA Today. They also become wood chips that are made into mulch. Just think, there's a very good chance a homeless Christmas tree is now helping your Spring garden grow and look beautiful.

Meanwhile, according to USA Today, many find a new home in coastal communities. That's because left-over Christmas trees can be fastened together, staked down, and used to trap sand and help create dunes as a first defense during tropical storms and hurricanes according to USA Today. The trees absorb the impact of destructive winds and waves.

Used Christmas Trees

Chances are your town has a recycling program for Christmas trees where they are turned into wood chips to create pathways in parks or returned to you after being ground up. That way you can use your own tree for your landscaping. According to NBC News. you can even donate your tree to help with nature preserves and wildlife. Some towns will sink the trees into ponds to create fish sanctuaries.

LOOK: Most famous musician born the same year as you

Stacker identified musicians born in every year from 1920 to 2003 and determined the most famous born the same year as you.

Gallery Credit: Jason Kessler

50 Albums Turning 50 in 2024

1974's offerings included the debut albums from Kiss and Rush, plus new music from David Bowie, Eagles, Lynyrd Skynyrd and more.

Gallery Credit: Matt Wardlaw

More From KISS FM 96.9