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January 03, 2018

Here’s how (and where) to recycle your Christmas tree in Philadelphia

Recycling Holidays
Stock_Carroll - Holiday Decorations, Rittenhouse Square Christmas Tree Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

The Christmas tree at Rittenhouse Square.

As the holiday season comes to an end, the next couple of weeks are likely to bring many a dried-up Christmas tree to the curbs of Philadelphia.

Leaving your tree outside for trash-day pick-up won’t mean it gets recycled, however. Trees left on the curb will be collected as trash, but the city has set up recycling options for people willing to drag their tree to one of six sanitation and recycling centers, or one of 23 neighborhood association sites.

The sanitation centers will be collecting trees from now through January 13. The locations are as follows:

  1. 3901 N. Delaware Ave. (Richmond)
  2. 5100 Grays Ave. (Kingsessing)
  3. 2601 W. Glenwood Ave. (North Philadelphia West)
  4. 3033 S. 73rd St. (Southwest Philadelphia)
  5. Domino Lane and Umbria Street (Roxborough)
  6. State Road and Ashburner Street (Northeast Philadelphia)

If you want to try one of the neighborhood civic associations (which may be more conveniently located), you have to wait until collection starts on Jan. 6. Those organizations will be collecting trees on Saturday, Jan. 6 and Saturday, Jan. 13, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Find the full list of drop-off locations here.

Streets Commissioner Carlton Williams told WHYY the city only collected between 300 and 400 trees for recycling last year, weighing in at about 6.5 tons of trees.

“We certainly hope to see a lot more this year through resident participation.”

Don’t forget, of course, to take off all the tree’s ornaments and lights before taking it to be recycled, and leave it untied when donating.

The city wants to remind residents that, while composting your tree is another sustainable option, don’t burn them in your fireplace. You probably already broke enough fire codes having a tree in the first place.

Check out the full info on holiday recycling here.