Where and How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas Trees in Iowa in January 2017
In many urban and suburban areas, Christmas trees are collected from curbside during the first 2 weeks in January. Be sure to remove all
remove all lights, wire, tinsel, ornaments, nails, stands, other
NON-Organic decorative materials and other materials that are not part
of the original tree. This includes tree stands also. Flocked trees are usually accepted, but not artificial trees. Large trees (larger
than the standard 6 - 7 ft tree) may need to be cut in half to
be acceptable by your
garbage hauler. But scrroll down this page for more specific
information and local links.
What happens to the trees? In most cases, the trees are chipped and made into a mulch
which is usually made available, free to city or county residents.
Important: Never burn your Christmas tree in a fireplace or wood stove.
Burning the tree may contribute to creosote buildup and could cause a
Tips: Always follow the links (usually the name of the city or county) below for updated information, as these agencies often wait until the last minute to change dates or
update their information (it's government, remember?). If your area is
not specifically mentioned below, contact your trash collection agency and inquire!
See this page for local options to easily recycle your Christmas holiday lights
Click here for the list of winter sleigh ride locations!
See our easy recipes to
Chocolate Yule log and
click here to make your own low-fat,
low calorie but delicious Egg Nog! Then come back to our
other website in March to
local Easter Egg Hunt for your children!
Iowa: Where and How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays
The City of Ames typically provides free
disposal of Christmas trees following the holidays at the Parks &
Recreation Maintenance Shop, 700 E. 13th St. The Christmas trees
will be recycled into chips, which will be used in City of Ames
parks. Generally, trees can be dropped off at the Parks & Recreation
Maintenance Shop during daylight hours throughout January. The
driveway will be marked with a sign. The tree stand, tinsel, and all
ornaments should be removed from the tree. For more specific
information on drop-off days and times,
check the City of Ames website calendar.
Boone County, IA - Each year the Boone County
Conservation Board, Boone county municipalities, and the
County Landfill work together to provide the TreeCycle program for
the recycling of
Christmas trees. The program runs for two-three
weeks each January. Actual dates and drop-off locations are
announced in area newspapers. The TreeCycle program accepts
only clean Christmas Trees. All ornaments, lights, tinsel, bags and
tree stands must be removed.) All Christmas trees collected through
the TreeCycle program will be recycled (chipped/mulched) and
utilized in county and city parks located in Boone County. If
residents have questions about the TreeCycle program they are
encouraged to call the Boone County Landfill at (515) 433-0591
between 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and between
8:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. on Saturday.
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Christmas Tree Disposal:
Residents have several options for disposal of their
Christmas trees this year. There are many different types of trees:
live, flocked and artificial trees. Flocked trees are live trees
that have been covered in a white, snow-like spray. Each type of
tree has different disposal options; please take a moment to
determine how to properly dispose of your tree.
Disposal (un-flocked): The Cedar Rapids Solid Waste and
Recycling Division collects live Christmas trees as part of the yard
waste collection service. Un-flocked trees will be collected
December 26th through January 16th. Preparing the tree for curbside
Remove all ornaments, wires and decorations from the
Do not place the tree in a plastic bag
Remove any stand
or other metal objects from the tree
Cut the tree into 3 foot
The tree can be placed at the curb on your collection
day. You may also put the tree into the YARDY cart for collection,
but make sure the lid can close.
To protect the safety of our
crews, please make sure trees are placed at the curb height for
collection. Items placed on top of snow banks will not be collected.
The Indian Creek Nature Center also accepts live, un-flocked
trees free from all metal objects at the Sac & Fox Trailhead Parking
lot on Bertram Rd (before the blue bridge). The trees will be
chipped and used as mulch on the Indian Creek Nature Center trail
system. Trees should be un-flocked and free of all decorations,
tinsel, tree trimmings, tree stand(s), nails and tree bags. Drop off
availability continues through January 31, 2015.
Trees: Flocked Trees are considered a garbage item. Trees
must be cut into 3 foot sections and each section must have a $1.50
garbage sticker affixed before being set out with your garbage.
Artificial Trees: Plastic trees are also a garbage
item. There are no recycling opportunities for plastic Christmas
trees in the area. If you can set your artificial tree out for
collection in 3 foot sections, a $1.50 sticker is required for each
section. If you cannot separate your artificial tree into sections,
please call the Solid Waste & Recycling Office at (319) 286-5897 to
set up a special pick-up of your tree. The tree will be collected
with the Bulky Item Collection Program. The cost of collection will
be $5.00 and added to your next municipal utility bill.
Cardboard is banned from the landfill, so customers must
recycle the cardboard tree box in the CURBY cart.
Des Moines, Iowa
- Christmas trees can be placed out for collection and will be picked up beginning
the last week of December. In
order to have your Christmas tree picked up you must first attach a
Compost It! sticker, make sure all tinsel and decorations are removed, and it cannot be in a plastic bag, and leave it at the curb on your regular
collection day. Wreaths and garland are not accepted. For additional information or to purchase a sticker, contact the Metro
Waste Authority at (515) 244-0021.
Dubuque, Iowa - trees are treated as yard waste.
Additional information regarding these programs can be found on each
individual program page, or by clicking
here to view the current flyer.
City - Residents who get curbside garbage and recycling
pickup services can leave their Christmas trees at the curb for
pickup on their regularly scheduled garbage days during January. Do
not put Christmas trees in a plastic bag, and be sure to remove
decorations, garland and lights. You won't be charged an additional
fee to dispose of trees away during January. The trees will be
composted at the Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center. Artificial
trees do not qualify for the free pickup, but you can arrange for
them to be picked up and disposed of for an additional fee. For
additional information call the Iowa City Solid Waste office at