How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas TreesWhere and How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas Trees in Massachusetts in January 2017

How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas Trees

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 chimney fire.

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 Grinding Christmas trees into mulchnot specifically mentioned below, contact your trash collection agency and inquire!

Related information:

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 make a 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 find a local Easter Egg Hunt for your children!

Massachusetts: Where and How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays

  • Statewide: If you do not see your city in the list below, go to the Massachusetts state website, you can enter your city and find the local public works dept contact information to see what their options are. Tree-cycle after the holidays. More than 200 Massachusetts towns and cities provide for the collection of cut Christmas trees, which are then recycled into compost or mulch
  • Agawam, MA - Christmas trees will be collected on the same day as your scheduled trash collection during the week of January 2nd – 5th.  Christmas trees 7’ or larger must be cut in half and placed on the tree belt no earlier than 7am of the collection day listed above. Trees in plastic bags will not be collected.
  • Boston, Massachusetts - The Department of Public Works typically collects and recycles Christmas trees during the first two weeks of January. You should put your tree out on your regular trash and recycling collection day. If your apartment building puts their trash in a dumpster, trees should be placed next to the dumpster for collection. If you miss this, the city collects Christmas trees for recycling in January: call 635-4959, Public Works will collect Christmas trees for composting from January 7-18. Remove all ornaments, decorations, and stands from trees and place trees at the curb by 7AM on your recycling day. Do not put trees in plastic bags, and don't forget to recycle your holiday catalogs and wrapping paper as well. Note:  Public Works will pick-up trees beginning January 7 on your recycling day. Look Up Your Recycling Day.   Click here for locations, updated information and more details. For further information, please call the Boston Recycling Program at (617) 635-4900.
  • Holiday Tree RecyclingCambridge, MA - Weather permitting, bare trees will be collected from residents for recycling on your regular collection day from December 31  to January 11. Remove stand and all decorations. Do not put in a plastic bag. Place bare trees at the curb by 7am on collection day or after 6pm the night before. Residents can also bring bare trees to the Recycling Center during open hours (Tues/Thurs 4pm-7:30pm and Sat 9am-4pm) from December 28 to January 26, 2013. Recycling Christmas trees prevents them from getting buried in the landfill. Trees are recycled into mulch. Every year, City residents recycle thousands of trees. Click here for locations, updated information and more details.
  • Chicopee, MA - Residents can drop off Christmas trees at the Chicopee Sanitary Landfill.
  • Concord, Massachusetts - Christmas Trees may be brought to the Composting Site on the dates indicated below. If you miss one of these scheduled events Christmas Trees may be brought to the Composting Site whenever it is open April through November. Wreaths and garlands can not be recycled because of the wire used to shape them. Please dispose of wreaths and garlands with your regular trash. Location: Composting Site: Walden Street (route 126), just across Route 2, before you reach Walden Pond.
    2016/17 Dates:
    Friday, December 30 (Christmas Trees only)
    Saturday, December 31 (Christmas Trees, Styrofoam and Christmas Tree Lights)
    Friday, January 6 (Christmas Trees only)
    Saturday, January 7 (Christmas Trees, Styrofoam and Christmas Tree Lights)
    Hours: 9:00 - 3:00.
  • Fairhaven, MA - several days in mid January, Christmas Tree pick up is one day after regular rubbish pick up day Place trees at curbside by 7 am on day of pick up. Remove all ornaments and tinsel. DO NOT PUT IN PLASTIC BAGS. Missed trees may be dropped off at the gate at the Recycle Center, 5 Arsene Street.
  • Greenfield, MA - Residents have two options: Greenfield residents who receive curbside trash collection can place Christmas trees curbside for collection at no charge. The curbside collection period will be for 2 weeks beginning January 2nd through January 13th. OR
    Christmas trees can be brought to the Transfer Station at no charge for Greenfield Residents. There is a ten dollar charge for non-Greenfield residents. Transfer Station Hours: Tuesday and Wednesday 12:30 to 2:30; Thursday and Friday 11:00 to 2:30 pm; and Saturdays * 7:30 to 2:00 pm (Transfer Station is closed on Friday December 30th) * Beginning January 15th the Saturday hours will be 7:30 to 12:00. There is no charge to residents; Non-residents can bring their trees to the Transfer Station for $10.
  • Holyoke, MA - Curbside pick-up during the first two weeks of January; Your Christmas Tree will be picked up at curbside sometime during the first two weeks of January. The trees will be collected on your trash day. Your Christmas Tree needs to be cleaned of all ornaments, lights, tinsel etc. Avoid leaving the tree in the snow bank during a snow storm, because if the tree becomes frozen in the snow bank we will be unable to pick it up for disposal.
  • Lowell, MA - Christmas Tree drop-off: Lowell does not provide curbside collection of Christmas Trees.
    There are 9 convenient neighborhood drop-off sites (see this map). Lowell BSA Troop 23 is offering curbside collection (see their flyer; You can send an e-mail to Troop23Lowell@Yahoo.com , or you can call and leave a message at 978-743-9627. Or see their website.
  • Marion, Massachusetts - Christmas tree pick-up is scheduled for the week of January 9 through January 13, 2017. Christmas trees should be placed curbside by 7:00 a.m. on the day of your regularly scheduled rubbish pick-up. Trees are also accepted at the Transfer Station on Benson Brook Road. Please be sure trees are free of all ornaments and tinsel. If you have any questions, please contact the DPW office at (508) 748-3540 ext. 101.
  • Newton, Mass - Newton will collect Christmas trees for recycling the first two weeks of January, on your collection day only*. 2016 dates: January 4th through January 15th.  Christmas trees will be collected for recycling on your collection day from January 4th through January 15th. Please place your undecorated Christmas tree out to the curb by 7am on your collection day during this time. All decorations and lights must be removed and trees cannot be in a bag. *After this time, the City will not collect Christmas trees. Residents will be responsible for disposing their own trees, they will NOT be accepted as bulk waste. Or wait until April and prepare the tree according to yard waste guidelines. For more Waste-Free Holiday tips, check out our guide!
  • Northampton, MA - Trees can be brought to Smith Vocational High School from 9AM-Noon JSaturday, January 7th and Saturday, January 14th. Address is Smith Vocational High School, 80 Locust Street, Northampton, MA. All trees must be clear of ornaments, lights, tinsel, plastic bags, netting and metal wires. Trees will be chipped on site. For more information contact: The Northampton DPW at 587-1570.
  • Pittsfield, Massachusetts - Pittsfield residents have two options for disposing of their Christmas Trees:
    Option No. 1 – Residents may take their tree to Covanta Pittsfield on Hubbard Avenue at no cost. Please remove all the tinsel, lights, and ornaments from the trees, so they can be recycled.
    Option No. 2 – Residents may place their tree with their trash on the curb for Allied Waste to collect as part of regular trash collection.
  • Plymouth, MA - See their annual announcement. (yes, they make it challenging, you have to search their website).
  • Reading, MA - Christmas Tree Recycling: This January the Town is providing two options for recycling of Christmas trees. On Saturday, in mid-January (see their website for this year's date)  residents may take their trees to the Compost Area on Strout Avenue from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. (leaves and branches will also be accepted at this time). In addition the contractor will collect Christmas trees curbside on your regular rubbish collection day the week of January 12 - 16. All decorations, including tinsel, must be removed from the trees. Trees in plastic bags or not completely cleaned of this material will not be picked up or accepted at the Compost Area. Please note, to use the Compost Center, you will need a 2015 Community Access Sticker. For further information regarding the Community Access Sticker contact the Police Department.
  • Somerville, MA - Christmas Tree Recycling: Place curbside with regular trash in December and January. Remove all decorations. Do not place in a plastic bag. Trees picked up through January are mulched. Trees picked up in February are disposed of as trash. Pick up free mulch through February. Artificial trees can be put out with regular trash. Real trees will be picked up by DPW for mulching in January. Trees put out after January, will be picked up for regular trash.
  • Southbridge, MA - Live Christmas trees are picked up every year by the Department of Public Works during the month of January. Residents shall place trees at the curb in front of their property. Trees must be stripped of all decorations (i.e. ornaments, lights, garland and stands). Residents are responsible for wind-blown trees and trees which obstruct plowing operations until such time as the Town removes them.
  • Springfield, Massachusetts - Department of Public Works reminds Springfield residents who have Christmas trees for disposal to place them on the curb on their normal recycling day. The Solid Waste Division will collect the trees starting on January 10, 2017 and ending January 20, 2017. After that time, Springfield residents can bring the Christmas trees to the Bondi Island Landfill and dispose of them at no charge. As a reminder, all trees MUST be free of any decorative lights, ornaments, decorations or tree stands. Trees MUST NOT be placed in any bags or boxes. Please lay trees on their side. Please do not tie them up with anything. Items should be placed out for collection no later than 6:00 a.m. on the day of collection For additional information on collection days residents can call 3-1-1 or (413) 736-3111.
  • Westford, MA - The Westford Fire Fighters Association - 978-392-0028. WFFA collects Christmas trees annually on designated dates in January. Price: $10 per tree via check payable to Westford Fire Fighters Association. Place check in a clear plastic bag and attach to tree; have trees curbside by 7am on date of pick-up. Call WFFA at (978) 392-0028 to place your information on the pick-up list.
    Westford Metals takes Christmas tree lights (green or white wire mini lights). Their address is  69 Broadway Street, Westford; 978-392-3251; M-F: 7am- 3pm.
  • Westwood, MA - Christmas Trees Collection: Xmas trees will be picked up the week of Jan 4th 2016, by the Department of Public Works. Please put your tree out by 7am on your regularly scheduled trash pickup day. All trees must be free of plastic bags, stands, ornaments, and other materials to be acceptable for collection.
  • Worchester, MA - For Worcester Residents Only, Weather Permitting; Tuesday, December 27, 2016 - Sunday, January 8, 2017; 8:30 AM to 3:00 PM, Monday through Friday; 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM, Saturday and Sunday (Only Millbury St. Site is Open Sundays). Worcester residents may dispose of their Christmas tree at a drop-off site listed below. Christmas trees will not be collected at the curb. No yard waste will be accepted at the sites, only live Christmas trees. Drop-Off Sites:
    Millbury Street Formerly Ballard Street, next to the VFW Post.
    Chandler Street In the parking lot across from Foley Stadium.
    Clark Street Near the East Mountain Street intersection.

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