How to dispose of your Christmas tree in 2022

Soon it will be that time of year — time to get rid of the Christmas tree. Here’s how to dispose of your Tannenbaum depending on where you live in the D.C. area.

First, be sure to remove any decorations, tinsel, garland, lights, metal and tree stands. Do not place trees in plastic bags. In many jurisdictions, trees are composted or chipped for mulch.

DC

The Department of Public Works will hold its holiday tree and greenery collection program from Jan. 3 to Feb. 28. Contact 311 to schedule your collection.

Trees and holiday greenery can also be dropped off at the following locations from Jan. 3 through Feb. 28, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.:

  • Benning Road Transfer Station: 3200 Benning Road NE
  • Fort Totten Transfer Station: 4900 John F. McCormack Drive NE
  • Bryant Street Sweep Shop: 201 Bryant Street NW
  • South Capitol Street Graffiti Shop: 2700 South Capitol Street SE

Maryland

Montgomery County

Montgomery County accepts Christmas trees year-round with its curbside yard trim collection. Just set your Christmas tree at the curb by 7 a.m. on your recycling collection day.

Residents of apartments or condominiums should check with their property manager for specific instructions. Property managers generally have to make arrangements in advance for special collections.

If you have an artificial tree and have Montgomery County-provided trash service, request a bulk trash pickup for your tree.

Prince George’s County

Residents with county-provided trash service can set their trees at the curb by 6 a.m. on yard trim collection days, which are every Monday. Yard trim includes grass clippings, leaves, small branches, brush and Christmas trees.

Residents who do not have curbside collection can drop off yard trim at the county’s Convenience Centers, free of charge. Here’s a list.

Frederick County

The City of Frederick Christmas Tree Drop Off and Recycling Program started Dec. 26 and continues through Jan. 31, 2022. The drop-off points will be:

  • Harry Grove Stadium lower parking lot
  • Husky Park Yard 2 on Highland Street
  • Tasker’s Chance parking lot on Key Parkway behind Westridge Shopping Center
  • Max Kehne parking lot on West 7th Street

Howard County

Howard County’s Merry Mulch program runs from Dec. 26 to Jan. 15, 2022. Residents with curbside yard trim collection can place their tree out for pickup on their yard trim collection day. Trees that are placed out on trash collection day will not be collected during yard trim collection season.

If you’re not sure whether you receive yard trim service, call 410-313-6444.

Trees can also be dropped off at these Merry Mulch collection sites:

  • Clarksville: Kendall Hardware (12260 Rt. 108)
  • Columbia: Cedar Lane Park (5081 Cedar Lane)
  • Elkridge: Rockburn Park (5400 Landing Road)
  • Ellicott City: Old Circuit Court upper parking on Court House Drive (just past Ellicott Mills Drive, on the right)
  • Highland: Schooley Mill Park (12975 Hall Shop Road)
  • Marriottsville: Alpha Ridge Landfill Wood Waste Area (2350 Marriottsville Road)
  • Savage: Savage Park (8400 Fair Street)
  • Woodbine: Western Regional Park (14800 Carrs Mill Road)

When curbside yard trim collection is no longer available after Jan. 15, trees can be placed out for trash collection and will be sent to a landfill, although the county asks that you only use this as a last resort.

You can still recycle your tree after Jan. 15 at the Alpha Ridge Landfill’s Residents’ Convenience Center, Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Artificial trees with metal components can be recycled there, too.

Anne Arundel County

Christmas trees and wreaths are considered yard waste and are picked up by 6 a.m. on your regular collection day year-round.

Charles County

Christmas tree drop-off recycling takes place Dec. 26 to Jan. 9, 2022, at the following locations:

Virginia

Fairfax County

Christmas trees less than eight feet that are set out separately at single-family and townhouse communities are collected during the first two weeks of January. Due to labor shortages, collectors temporarily have the option to pick up Christmas trees with trash. Contact your collection company regarding this service.

County residents can also drop off their trees at the I-66 Transfer Station or the I-95 Landfill Complex. There is a $7 fee to recycle your tree.

The county recommends donating artificial trees in good condition to charitable organizations.

Alexandria

Christmas tree collection begins Jan. 3 and ends Jan. 31, 2022. Residents who receive curbside recycling services can set trees at their regular yard waste collection point by 6 a.m. on trash collection day.

Arlington

From Jan. 3 through Jan. 14, 2022, county residents can place trees at the curb no later than 6 a.m. on their regular trash collection day.

After Jan. 14, Christmas trees are handled curbside as part of regular year-round yard waste collection. Make sure the tree is bare and ready for composting. Trees over eight feet long need to be dismantled.

Residents without a regular curbside pickup, including those in townhomes, apartments and condominiums, can bring trees to the Solid Waste Bureau’s Earth Products Yard in Shirlington. Call 703-228-5000, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., to schedule a weekday appointment. You will need proof of residence in Arlington to drop off.

Loudoun County

Residents who receive curbside recycling services should contact their homeowners’ association, town office or private waste collector for Christmas tree curbside recycling information.

From late December through mid-January, residents can take their Christmas trees to the locations listed below for recycling:

  • Leesburg: Loudoun County Landfill Recycling Dropoff Center (21101 Evergreen Mills Road)
  • Lovettsville: Game Protective Association (16 South Berlin Pike)
  • Purcellville: Franklin Park (17501 Franklin Park Drive)
  • South Riding: Town Hall (43055 Center St.)
  • Sterling: Claude Moore Park (46150 Loudoun Park Lane)

Prince William County

As a part of the yard waste collection program, pick up of cut Christmas trees is available on yard waste collection day during the first two full weeks of January.

Trees can also be recycled at the following locations:

  • The Prince William County Landfill: 14811 Dumfries Road in Manassas
  • The Balls Ford Road Compost Facility: 13000 Balls Ford Road in Manassas
  • Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative (NOVEC): 5399 Wellington Branch Road in Gainesville

Anna Gawel

Anna Gawel joined WTOP in 2020 and works in both the radio and digital departments. Anna Gawel has spent much of her career as the managing editor of The Washington Diplomat, which has been the flagship publication of D.C.’s diplomatic community for over 25 years.

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