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What to do with your tree after Christmas

More than five green Christmas trees grow on a plot of land.
New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets
A group of firs, or Christmas trees, grow together.

Now that the holiday has passed, some may be left wondering what to do with their Christmas tree. But there are multiple options to give them a new life.

The Onondaga County Resource Recovery Agency, also known as OCRRA, transform the evergreens into a common landscaping material.

OCRRA's Public Information Officer Tammy Palmer said beginning on Jan. 2, people interested in donating their tree to be used as mulch can haul them to one of two locations in the county.

"One is to take it to our Amboy compost site; the other is our Jamesville compost site," Palmer said. "You want to make sure you take off all the decorations so that they don't get mixed in with the wood, which is mulched up and sold come spring."

The compost sites accept real trees beginning the Monday after New Year's Day through Jan. 12 on weekdays from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

As for artificial trees, Palmer said there are a few options. While she said people should keep the false firs for several years in the interest of sustainability, they can be disposed at OCRRA's Rock Cut Road site.

"There is a fee there depending on what kind of vehicle you bring in and how loaded it is," Palmer said. "But we would recommend that you call your local municipality to find out if they have curbside pickup of trees after Christmas, particularly fake trees."

Some charities may also accept donations of artificial trees, but Palmer recommends calling ahead to check the organization's policies.