WATCH: As Many as 25,000 Bugs Could Be Living in Your Fresh Christmas Tree
11/8/18 - We’ve got bad news. It turns out that your ornaments aren’t the only things calling your Christmas tree home. According to organic gardening and pest control company, Safer Brand, as many as 25,000 bugs could be living in your pretty green tree.
When you bring a freshly-cut evergreen tree into your home, it’s easy to forget that you’re also bringing home a living tree—and the thousands of little insects that are hibernating inside of it. When your Christmas tree enters your house, all of its creepy-crawly residents will wake up thinking it’s spring. Honestly, can you blame them?
Most of these insects are harmless and die as soon as you bring the tree home, but among the ones that live, the most common will be aphids, spiders, mites, adelgids, praying mantises, bark beetles, and sawflies.
Related: Types of Christmas Trees
To prevent bringing any of them home, Safer Brand recommends examining your tree’s trunk and branches for bug nests before buying it and leaving it in your garage for at least 24 hours before decorating. Finally, before bringing it inside, shake it out over a white sheet to dislodge any bugs. And most importantly, do not spray aerosol pesticides on it, as these can be flammable.
Dr. Nancy Troyano, Ph.D. and entomologist for several pest control brands including Ehrlich, Western Exterminator, and Presto-X spoke to Southern Living about this issue as well. She told us what to do if we still have a few bug pals who make it past the inspection and the shakedown.
“Vacuuming up the pests and/or scooping them up and moving them outside is the best way to handle any Christmas tree stowaways.”