Everyone loves a beautiful Christmas tree decked with ornaments and lights. But once the holidays are over, the evergreen sometimes has a tendency to stay well beyond the New Year. Before your tree is covered with hearts for Valentine’s Day, be good to the environment by “tree-cycling” your pine. It’s easy to recycle your tree through one of the many San Diego convenient locations, or you can have it picked up from your curb.


Photo: Julie Corsi via Flickr CC

Christmas Tree Recycling

City of San Diego Environmental Services Department
The City of San Diego Environment Services Department is hosting its annual Christmas Tree Recycling Program from December 26, 2016 through January 23, 2017. They will provide 16 drop-off locations available to residents only.

The City of San Diego is accepting both green and flocked trees for recycling. Here is a list of locations where you may drop-off your tree for recycling in San Diego:

  • Carmel Valley – Carmel Valley Recreation Center, 3777 Townsgate Dr., lower parking lot
  • Encanto – Cielo Drive at Woodman St.
  • Golden Hill – Golden Hill Recreation Center, 2600 Golf Course Dr.
  • La Jolla – Kate Sessions Memorial Park, Soledad Road and Loring Street
  • Logan Heights – Memorial Recreation Center, 2902 Marcy Ave.
  • Miramar – The Greenery at the Miramar Landfill, Convoy St. north of Highway 52
  • Mission Bay – Sea World Drive at Pacific Highway
  • Oak Park – Chollas Lake, 6350 College Grove Dr., in Gloria’s Mesa parking lot
  • Ocean Beach – Robb Athletic Field Recreation Center, 2525 Bacon St.
  • Otay Mesa/Nestor – Montgomery Waller Community Park (lower-west parking lot)
  • Rancho Bernardo – Rancho Bernardo Recreation Center, 18448 W. Bernardo Dr.
  • Rancho Penasquitos – Canyonside Recreation Center, 12350 Black Mountain Rd.
  • San Diego State University – Parking Lot D off Alvarado Rd.
  • Scripps Ranch – Scripps Ranch Recreation Center, 11454 Blue Cypress Dr.
  • Tierrasanta – De Portola Middle School, 11010 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.
  • University City – Swanson Pool, 3585 Governor Dr.

Miramar Greenery
If the tree recycling locations don’t work for you, you can always take your tree (or other household greens) to Miramar Greenery. The facility accepts regular trees, flocked trees (those with white snow) and greens throughout the year at the following location:

Miramar Greenery
180 Convoy St.
San Diego, CA 92111
(inside the Miramar Landfill, North of Highway 52)

Curbside Collection
If you’re a San Diego County resident with yard waste recycling, you have the option to have your tree picked up on your designed recycle collection days. You have two options depending on the type of recycle container you own. If you have your own manual container, then you will place the tree in your bin and leave it on the curb for collection. If your tree is over four-feed tall, make sure to cut it in half.

If you have one of the large, green 96-gallon containers provided by the city, then place your tree in that and leave it on the curb on your greenery recycling pickup day.

Tree Recycling Tip
For all types of tree recycling, be sure to prep your tree by removing all decorations and adornments, returning it to its original state. That includes ornaments, tinsel, lights, wire, nails, and tree stands.

How do make your Christmas green each year? Tell us in the comments! 

— Leah R. Singer