Holiday Recycling

Christmas Tree Disposal

Several options exist for Columbia residents to recycle/dispose of live Christmas trees:Christmas Tree

Curbside pick-up (Landfill)

  • Between December 26 and January 31, you can simply set the tree curbside on your normally scheduled pickup day. The tree does not need to be cut to 4 foot lengths and does not need to be stripped of decorations. The trees will go directly into the landfill where the tree will decompose and will assist in the generation of methane gas used to generate electricity. After January 31, the tree must meet the usual length requirements and be cut into lengths no longer than 4 feet.  

Recycling Drop-off (Compost)

  • You may recycle your tree at either of the Yard Waste Drop-off Centers: Parkside Drive or Capen Park. Please ensure that no decorations or tree stands are dropped-off at these sites. The trees will be shredded into mulch and used in the City’s Compost Operation. The remaining mulch is free to the public for landscaping or backyard composting.
  • You may also recycle your tree by transporting it directly to the City’s Compost Operation at 5700 Peabody Road (near the landfill).
  • There is no charge for dropping-off your tree at the yard waste or composting areas. The tree, or any other yard waste, can be taken to these locations any time throughout the year.
  • While you may leave decorations on the tree if it is set out for curbside pick-up, we urge you to consider recycling donating or selling any unwanted decorations. Ornaments and tinsel that are not repurposed should be disposed in a black trash bag for curbside collection.
  • Find out if there is a way to recycle your holiday decorations by searching the item on our new phone app, COMO Recycle and Trash. The Waste Wizard search engine is also available on our main Solid Waste webpage.

Artificial trees and wreaths which have met the end of their lifespan should be disposed of in your normal trash collection. These are not recyclable.

Christmas Light Recycling

Drop-off location:

Mid-MO Recycling

(573) 474-3997

6104 Brown Station Road

Columbia, MO 65202

Wrapping Paper (Gift Wrap) Recycling

Unfortunately, these items are not recyclable unless the packaging clearly says that it can be recycled. Most of the wrapping paper that you find in stores are not recyclable since they add foil and other compounds that cannot be removed from the paper material. However, if you do some searching, there are a few companies that still make wrapping paper entire of paper. Those products can be recycled as mixed fiber, but we mainly encourage the reuse of wrapping paper, when possible.

For more information, call the Contact Center at 573-874-CITY (2489).