Reno non-profit organization Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful (KTMB) sponsors the annual effort to recycle Christmas trees, which helps keep them out of the landfill and discourages illegal dumping in area open spaces. The recycling program typically begins the day after Christmas and continues through the New Year until the middle of January. Other agencies and businesses lending support include City of Sparks Parks and Recreation, Washoe County Regional Parks and Open Space, City of Reno Urban Forestry, Sierra and Truckee Meadows Fire Protection Districts, Tholl Fence, Waste Management Recycle America, and the governments of Reno, Sparks, and Washoe County.
What Trees Can Be Recycled?
The KTMB Christmas tree recycling program accepts natural trees with all ornaments, lights, and stands removed. Flocked trees are not accepted because they clog the chippers used to turn the trees into mulch.
Where to Recycle Christmas Trees
There are three locations in the Truckee Meadows where Christmas trees are accepted during the recycling program period. Drop-off hours are between 9 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. A $3 donation is requested to support this and other KTMB programs. NV Energy matches Christmas tree recycling donations up to $10,000. Residents may bring their household trees, but commercial businesses with five or more trees to recycle should call (775) 425-3015.
- Bartley Ranch Regional Park, 6000 Bartley Ranch Road (off Lakeside Drive) in Reno
- Rancho San Rafael Regional Park, 1595 N. Sierra Street (west side of the park at the Coleman Street entrance) in Reno
- Shadow Mt. Sports Complex, 3300 Sparks Boulevard (Shadow Lane entrance) in Sparks
Uses for Christmas Tree Mulch
Christmas trees are recycled by mulching them with chipper machines. Local parks, landscapers, and residents then use the product in various ways to enhance our surroundings and save money with this virtually free material. Here are some suggested uses...
- Prevent erosion.
- Weed abatement.
- Landscaping walkways and paths.
- Animal bedding.
- Insect deterrent.
- Protect and foster growth of certain plants.*
- Insulate soil.
Residents can get free mulch through the end of January. For more information, call Bartley Ranch Regional Park at (775) 828-6612 or Rancho San Rafael Regional Park at (775) 785-4512.
(*Christmas tree mulch should not be used in or around flower and vegetable gardens because of the acidity of the pine chips.)
Be a KTMB Volunteer
The Christmas tree recycling program depends on volunteers to help at the collection locations. You can sign up online and choose the location where you would like to work. For more information or to volunteer by phone, call (775) 851-5185. Christmas tree recycling is 7 days a week from December 26, 2012 through January 13, 2013. Shifts are available every day from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
There are other KTMB community beautification and recycling programs, such as The Great Truckee Meadows Community Cleanup and the Community E-waste Event, that also depend on volunteers.
Source: Keep Truckee Meadows Beautiful (KTMB).