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Christmas Trees Get New Purpose With Houston Recycling Program

Christmas has passed and that means the end for many Christmas trees. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however. Trees recycled in the city of Houston will have a new calling.



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(Shredding noise)

That’s the sound of the official holiday tree of the City of Houston being shredded to mulch in front of city hall. The mulching event kicked off the city’s Christmas tree recycling service.

Between now and Jan. 8, residents can drop off their trees at 18 locations throughout Houston. Elizabeth Brooks is with the city’s Solid Waste Department.

“We’re proud to say that for 22 years now, we have worked to give these Christmas trees their own chance at bringing new life at the end of the season by recycling them into mulch and compost that can be used to keep other trees in Houston alive and well.”

Organic recycling company Living Earth will mulch the Christmas trees, pack the mulch in bags and sell them at different locations in Houston. Ten cents of each sold bag goes to the city’s recycling program.

Those who miss the Jan. 8 deadline, or don’t want to drive to get rid of their tree, can wait until the tree waste collection service every odd-numbered month. Trees are then picked up from the curbside.

Make sure to remove all decorations, lights and stands before recycling your tree. Flocked trees, that is, trees that are sprayed white to look like snow, can be put out on junk waste collection days, which are every even-numbered month.

But what about old artificial trees?

 “I guess you’d have to look at the type of plastic, because we only recycle 1, 5 and 7. If it’s made out of one of those, all of it, including the little leaves, then maybe, but I don’t know that they would accept it if it was like sticking out of your recycling bin.”


You can drop off your natural Christmas at the following locations:

Wed. – Sun., 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.:

Sunbeam Neighborhood Depository – 5100 Sunbeam

Central Neighborhood Depository – 2240 Central St.

Kirkpatrick Neighborhood Depository – 5565 Kirkpatrick

Sommermeyer Neighborhood Depository – 14400 Sommermeyer

N. Main Neighborhood Depository – 9003 N. Main

Southwest Neighborhood Depository -10785 SW Freeway


Mon. – Fri. 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. – 12 p.m., closed Sunday:

Westpark Consumer Recycling Center – 5900 Westpark


Open daily, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.:

Doss Park (gates close at 5) – 2500 Frick Road

Memorial Park (Ball Fields 4 and 5) – 7300 Memorial Drive

T.C. Jester Park – 4200 T.C. Jester West

Kingwood – Bens View Lane at Bens Branch Drive

Ellington Airport Recycling Drop-off – HWY 3 at Brantley Road


Mon. – Sat. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., closed Sunday:

Living Earth – 5625 Crawford Road

Living Earth – 1503 Industrial Drive (Gessner at Hwy 90)

Living Earth – 1700 Highway 90A East

Living Earth – 12202 Cutten Road

Living Earth – 16138 Highway 6

Living Earth – 5210 S. Sam Houston Pkwy.


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