Christmas tree recycling

Scroll down this page for local Alabama recycling and responsible disposal options for holiday waste, from Christmas trees and wreathes, to lights, ornaments, wrapping and packaging. Many towns and cities offer curbside collection, even for Christmas trees. Counties and unicorporated areas typically have a number or drop-off locations.

Christmas trees are usually colllected from December 26th through the first 2 or 3 weeks in January.  Whether your tree is picked up from your curb,Grinding Christmas trees into mulch or you drop it off, 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 occasionally accepted (call to verify), 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 curbside garbage hauler.

The trees and wreathes are usually chipped and made into a mulch which is often made available, free to city or county residents.

Recycling other items:

Always follow the links (usually the blue, underlined 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. If your area is not specifically mentioned below, call your trash collection agency and ask!

Alabama: Where and How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays January 2024

  • In Alexander City, Clanton, Millbrook, Prattville and Wetumpka, trees can be dropped off at Winn Dixie supermarkets in the designated areas of the parking lots from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. until January 4th.
  • Auburn and Opelika - The Keep Opelika Beautiful and Opelika Tree Commission hosts a Christmas tree Recycling Event at the Opelika Chamber of Commerce parking lot. This takes place the Saturday after Christmas from 8 am to 12pm. Citizens receive a tree seedling in exchange for the tree. Auburn, Alabama waste collection page.
  • Baldwin County - Trees free of decorations can be brought to any of the following locations. For more information on the Annual Baldwin County Christmas Tree Recycling Program, call (251)972-6878.
    Bay Minette Transfer Station: 4291 Nicholasville Rd, Bay Minette, AL 36507.
    Spanish Fort Volunteer Fire Dept: 7580 Spanish Ford Blvd, Spanish Fort, 36527.
    MacBride Landfill: 14200 County Rd 64, Loxley, 36551.
    Baldwin County Central Annex: 22251 Palmer St, Robertsdale, 36567.
    Fairhope Satellite Courthouse: 1100 Fairhope Ave, Fairhope, 36532.
    Magnolia Landfill: 15140 County Rd 49, Summerdale, 36580.
    Foley Satellite Courthouse: 201 E. Section Ave, Foley, 36535.
    Perdido Beach Volunteer Fire Dept: 8450 Escambia Ave, Perdido Beach, 36530.
  • Birmingham - curbside pickup. Trees are chipped by the city as part of their normal landscaping and yard debris removal service on regularly scheduled pickup days. This news story has more information . The Birmingham Zoo and the Mountain Brook Tree Commission are working together to recycle natural Christmas trees at the Birmingham Zoo. Drop off natural trees free of ornaments, garland, etc. at the zoo's picnic area until the end of the first week in January. The trees will be turned into mulch and used to control erosion throughout the zoo.
  • Cullman - Drop off your trees in front of the Aquaculture Center of Gadsden State Community College. The tree branches will be dropped into the school's ponds to encourage the spawning of yellow perch. The college is located on Wallace Drive in Gadsden.
  • Dothan - Drop off natural Christmas trees at Dothan Utilities' 200 Kilgore Drive location, December 29th through about January 8th. Please remove all decorations and ornaments prior to bringing your tree for chipping.
  • Enterprise -
  • Fairhope - Trees will be picked up during regular scheduled trash days through February 22nd. Mulch created from those trees will be available at no cost to residents on Arbor Day (late February) from 9:00 am until noon at the Public Works Warehouse located at 555 S. Section Street. If you have questions, call 251-990-0192.
  • Enterprise - Natural Christmas trees are picked up curbside and are chipped by the city as part of their normal landscaping and yard debris removal service. Some trees will be ground for mulch while others will be deposited in local ponds to create fish habitat.. The City of Enterprise does NOT accept drop off of old Christmas trees. We will pick up curbside on their normal garbage day. Per ADEM residents are not allowed on our premises. Again, NO DROP OFF location at the City of Enterprise.
  • Gardendale - Old Christmas trees are picked up curbside and are chipped by the city as part of their normal landscaping and yard debris removal service. Mulch generated goes to Gardendale city landscaping.
  • Homewood - From 8 am to 8 pm on December 26 through January 8 natural, decoration free Christmas trees can be brought to the corner parking lot at Dale and Grace St. The trees will be recycled and the mulch will be used for paths at the Homewood City School's Community Garden. Decoration-free, natural trees can also be dropped off in the designated areas in the back rear parking lot of the Homewood Public Library.
  • Hoover - Christmas trees will be picked up curbside in January and are chipped by the city as part of their normal landscaping and yard debris removal service on regularly scheduled pickup days. There will also be a drop-off site on Municipal Lane, across from the Lake House. Signs will be posted on Municipal Lane after Christmas.
  • Huntsville - The city will pick up Christmas trees at curbside on your normal yard waste collection day. Be sure to remove ornaments, lights, stands, tinsel, etc.
    The Solid Waste Disposal Authority of the City of Huntsville (SWDA) and its curbside recycling program, Recycling Alliance of North Alabama (RANA), in coordination with the City of Huntsville, Madison County, the City of Madison and Operation Green Team are hosting the Annual Operation Christmas Clean Up, Saturday, January 7, 2023, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at at two locations: John Hunt Park, 2315 Airport Road, and Madison City Schools Stadium, 211 Celtic Drive.
    Here's what you can drop off:
    Live Christmas trees
    Flattened and broken-down cardboard boxes
    To recycle a live Christmas tree, participants must remove all lights and ornaments. No artificial trees, wrapping paper and packaging materials such as Styrofoam and plastic can be accepted.
    Residents can recycle their Christmas trees, flattened and broken-down cardboard boxes, batteries, and old electronics. To recycle a live Christmas tree, participants must remove all lights and ornaments. Items that will not be accepted are artificial trees, wrapping paper and packaging materials (Styrofoam, plastic).
    Also on one day in January (they have not yet announced the date, you'll have to call them or see their Facebook page)  from 8 am to 1:00 pm; Huntsville's Green Team is partnering with the Solid Waste Disposal Authority to help you recycle post-holiday items.
    Selected recyclables from the list below may be dropped off at the Joe Davis Stadium parking lot on one Saturday in January from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
    Live Christmas trees, cardboard, batteries & electronics (TV's, game consoles, etc)*
    Remove lights & ornaments from live trees
    Break down and FLATTEN your cardboard boxes prior to arrival
    No wrapping paper, no packaging materials such as styrofoam, plastic wrap, zip ties, metal straps, etc
  • Mobile - The City has discontinued the tree recycling program after 2022. The City will collect Christmas trees with regular curbside trash collection. 
    That service runs every other week. More information is available on the Mobile Garbage Collection website 
    Click here for the Mobile Holiday Schedule. For more information call 311 (251-208-5311)
  • Montgomery - There is curbside tree collection for residents, Trees placed by the curb or road will be taken to the landfill and will not be recycled. For more information, please call (334) 625-2175.
    They NO LONGER have the drop off for recycling.
  • Mountain Brook - Drop off natural Christmas trees (free of decorations) at the zoo's picnic area next to the parking lot during normal business hours, December 26th through January 6th. The trees will be turned into mulch for use at the zoo. Note that trees left at curbside will not be recycled. This is a partnership between the Mountain Brook Tree Commission and the Birmingham Zoo.
  • Prattville -
    Curbside - trees placed on the curb will be collected and then mulched to be used in city landscape projects. Remove all decorations.
    Drop-off - Natural Christmas trees can be dropped  at the public works department's administrative building at 530 Doster Road, downtown
  • Tuscaloosa - Each year, the city of Tuscaloosa Environmental Services Department hosts a Christmas Tree Recycling Event. There is squat on their website this year about (don't you just love government?) but they'll probably do the same this year. Real Christmas trees, along with real garland and wreaths, can be dropped off during the two weeks following Christmas at the City's Environmental Services Department at 3440 Kauloosa Aveue Tuscaloosa, AL 35401. The trees, garland and wreaths are mulched by a local business and used in a multitude of projects including mulched landscaping applications, erosion control, and bio fuels for wood-burning boilers. Christmas trees, garland and wreaths must be stripped of all decorations. Artificial trees, artificial wreaths and artificial garland will not be accepted. For questions, please contact the Environmental Services Dept. at 205-248-4900 or email [email protected]
  • Shelby County -County citizens can drop off their trees for recycling on December 26 through the first week in January at the following locations:
    Pelham City Park (off US 31 in Pelham)
    Ray Building (off Alabama 70 in Columbiana)
    Chelsea City Hall
    Heardmont Park on U.S. 119
    Propst Alabaster LLC (formerly Colonial Properties Alabaster, at the end of the AmStar Theater parking lot)
    All drop areas are located in parking lots and designated with orange traffic cones and signs.
  • Vestavia - Decoration free, natural Christmas trees can be dropped off at Scout Square (The Christmas Tree Lot) right off of Highway 31 in Vestavia. Donated trees are used as fish habitats in the lakes on the properties of Alabama Power.

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