HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – As the holiday season draws to a close, there’s still one more thing to check off your to-do list: if you used a natural Christmas tree this year, you can “treecycle” it.
“Natural Christmas trees are truly the gift that keeps on giving,” said Rebekah Eastep, a team leader with askHRgreen.org. “Recycling your tree, or ‘treecycling,’ keeps it out of the landfill, whether you are leaving it curbside for your locality pickup, taking it to a drop-off location or reusing in your lawn and garden areas.”
Beginning Thursday, December 26, residents throughout the greater Hampton Roads area may take advantage of a seasonal “treecycling” program according to their locality guidelines. Many cities and counties collect and chip the trees into mulch or compost that is used to spruce up community parks, roadway plantings and median areas.
The trees, which should be free of lights, ornaments, tinsel or decorations, can be placed at the curb on scheduled collection days or taken to a designated drop-off location. You can find your city or county’s collection guidelines here.
In addition to making mulch, natural trees, boughs and garland can benefit your lawn and garden in a number of creative ways. According to Eastep, you can:
- Use the tree as a habitat for wintering birds and woodland creatures;
- Drape boughs and branches over plant beds for winter protection;
- Shred pines needles for use on pathways and trails;
- Use branches and trunk segments to form borders around garden areas and pathways;
- Snip small branches to use as kindling in outdoor fire pits.
For additional information about all things green, click here.