I just got an email from one of my home inspectors with a timely holiday tip. It is in response to the question, “Can I burn my Christmas Tree in the fireplace?”
No! You could burn your house down if you throw even a few pine branches into the fire. Dried-out evergreens burn like tinder. Their needles go up in a flash, creating huge, fast-burning sparks, which can fly across a room or onto the roof and set your shingles on fire. Plus, the pitch in the wood creates huge, fast-moving sparks that can jump right out of the fireplace and into your room, or up the chimney and onto the shingles. The combination causes flames, heat and smoke to pour out of a fireplace opening with no warning. And the fire from a Christmas tree burns so hot that you’re sure to damage the firebox and the chimney.
So don’t put your tree—or any of its branches, even for kindling—in the fireplace. Instead, compost it or bring it to a recycling center, which will chip it up and turn it into mulch.