Prior to becoming an international superstar, Taylor Swift once worked on her parents' Christmas Tree Farm. Believe it or not, her job was cutting this very object out of trees before they could go home with customers! 

2020's handed us our fair share of shortages. Toilet paper. Hand sanitizer. Above ground pools. Bikes. Headed into the holiday season, tree lots are experiencing a surge of people interested in real trees. Many are seeing a significant jump in in sales from this time last year. Why? Families are looking for alternatives to all of the Christmas parades and activities that have been canceled. A safe visit to the tree lot or grabbing a Christmas tree permit and cutting down your own tree in the Boise or Payette National forest is a great way to build holiday memories.

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That said, if you are joining #TeamRealTree this year be on the look out for these yucky looking, walnut sized lumps attached to the branches!

It's not some oddly shaped pine cone. It's a praying mantis egg case! By bringing it into your home, you've just given them the perfect opportunity to hatch long before they're supposed to in the spring! According to Country Living, the egg case is meant to protect eggs from cold winter temperatures until conditions are right (and warmer) for hundreds of baby praying mantises to thrive.  If one hitched a ride into your home on a live Christmas tree, the cozy temperatures in your home might cause them to hatch your house. Tiny praying mantises EVERYWHERE!

So what happens if you DO find one of these in your tree? The good news is you don't need to throw out the entire tree. Simply snip off the branch that it's attached to and put it outside. That'll give these little guys a good chance of actually making it spring!


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