Delaware Residents Urged to Recycle Christmas Trees
Tuesday, December 27, 2022
Commercial Yard Waste Sites Available Statewide for Convenient Drop-off
After the holidays, the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control encourages Delawareans to keep their real Christmas trees out of the state’s landfills by recycling them at any of the many yard waste recycling sites located throughout the state. Tree mulch is great for helping conserve and enhance First State soil by sequestering carbon that both fertilizes the soil and helps it retain moisture.
Christmas tree recycling also saves valuable space in Delaware’s landfills. More than 176,000 tons of yard waste – which includes grass, leaves, brush, trees (Christmas trees prominent among them) and other lawn/landscape materials – was recycled in 2021. Prior to Delaware’s yard waste ban, many of these materials – considered reusable resources – were sent to landfills, taking up space rather than being handled through local markets for mulch and home composting.
Residents have the option to choose from among many sites in Delaware to drop off their Christmas tree. Some of these sites accept trees at no cost, while others charge for the service. Before residents drop off their tree, call the site in advance to see what restrictions are in place and whether there is a charge for accepting a tree to be recycled. Residents who pay for curbside collection service should call their waste hauler to see if they offer Christmas tree pickup. If pickup is unavailable from haulers, check the list of yard waste drop-off sites on the DNREC website atde.gov/yardwaste.
Trees may be accepted as soon as Dec. 26 and as late as Jan. 28, 2023, but. as each yard waste facility has its own schedule, calling ahead or checking the DNREC website is advised. Likewise, commercial haulers or landscapers should call a facility prior to delivering loads of Christmas trees to be mulched. Christmas trees are not accepted for recycling at Delaware State Parks and it is illegal to leave or dump them on dunes or beaches, or anywhere within a state park.
Whether dropping off a Christmas tree or having it collected, prepare the tree for recycling into mulch by stripping off all decorations and lights, removing any flocking (fake snow) and detaching tree stands.
Delawareans also are reminded that Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023 is the last day to drop off materials, including Christmas trees, at the Polly Drummond Hill Road yard waste site in northern New Castle County. The DNREC-administered site will close at sundown Sunday, Jan. 15 and will reopen for spring on Saturday, March 25. More information can be found at de.gov/yardwaste.
The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control protects and manages the state’s natural resources, protects public health, provides outdoor recreational opportunities and educates Delawareans about the environment. The DNREC Division of Waste and Hazardous Substances ensures Delaware’s wastes are managed to protect human life, health, safety and the environment. For more information, visit the website and connect with @DelawareDNREC onFacebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn.