I hope that you know they grow 100 ft tall and 4 ft wide. You could leave them on the ground for the squirrels to take them......but they would have to be removed by spring or they would start more trees. So you might think about making somekind of netting.....but then it might stick in the net. Using the shop vac is probably the easiest way to get them off the ground. If there is a way to put a piece on the bottom to act like a wide vacuum they could help speed up the task.