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San Francisco city officials are reminding residents that their unadorned Christmas trees can be collected by Recology between Jan. 3 and Jan. 14 as part of the city’s annual tree recycling tradition.

This year marks the 35th year of the city’s Christmas tree chipping, in which trees are recycled and converted into nutrient-rich mulch, used for various landscaping projects.

Last year, the city recycled 500 tons of Christmas trees.

The recycling tradition is part of a joint effort between Recology, San Francisco Public Works, and the city’s Department of the Environment.

“Not only does this ensure that discarded holiday trees will be put to good use as earth-friendly mulch but disposing of them properly also helps keep our neighborhoods clean and safe and reduces fire hazards.”

Carla Short, San Francisco Public Works

“San Franciscans have a lot to be grateful for this year, especially when you think about our environmental successes,” Department of the Environment director Debbie Raphael said in a statement.

“We’re celebrating 25 years of our first-in-the-nation composting program, the launch of our Climate Action Plan to help us achieve net-zero carbon emissions, and continuing our time-honored tradition, now in its 35th year, of recycling household Christmas trees into fabulous mulch,” she said.

“The Christmas tree collection and recycling program makes it easy for people to participate; just set out your tree on your regularly scheduled trash pickup day and Recology crews will take care of the rest,” Public Works interim director Carla Short said. “Not only does this ensure that discarded holiday trees will be put to good use as earth-friendly mulch but disposing of them properly also helps keep our neighborhoods clean and safe and reduces fire hazards.”

To recycle a Christmas tree, residents can simply put their tree next to their blue recycling bin on the night before their regular collection day. Residents are being reminded to remove all decorations, stands, lights, tinsel, and any other adornments.

Trees taller than 6 feet should be cut in half and trees should not be placed in plastic bags.