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City Of San Diego: Recycle Your Christmas Tree

Reported by Matthew Bowler

Miramar Landfill is just one of the places where San Diegans can drop off their Christmas trees for recycling. Ken Prue of San Diego's Environmental Services Department says the Christmas tree recycling program, which turns 42 this year, helps keep methane out of the atmosphere and produces mulch for local gardeners.

Miramar Landfill is just one of the places where San Diegans can drop off their Christmas trees for recycling. Ken Prue of San Diego's Environmental Services Department says the Christmas tree recycling program, which turns 42 this year, helps keep methane out of the atmosphere and produces mulch for local gardeners.

Photo by Matthew Bowler

Christmas trees are piled at the Miramar Landfill for recycling, Dec. 28, 2015.

The city of San Diego's 42nd annual Christmas tree recycling program was launched Monday in an effort to keep trees out of landfills and turn them into mulch for gardeners.

The program is intended for San Diego residents who do not have curbside refuse collection.

"Last year, approximately 385 tons of Christmas trees were collected during this free, month-long effort," Councilman Chris Cate said at a news conference.

Ken Prue of San Diego's Environmental Services Department said he expects the city will collect more than 150,000 trees. He said the program is a benefit not just to gardeners but also the environment.

"Not only is it not taking up space, but then it's also not decomposing in the landfill and generating methane," Prue said.

Both regular and flocked trees can be recycled, but city officials asked that tree stands, ornaments and other decorations be removed first.

The group WasteFreeSD.org has compiled a comprehensive list of where residents throughout San Diego County can go to recycle their Christmas trees and holiday greenery.

In San Diego, residents can bring their trees to the Miramar Greenery — at the Miramar Landfill on Convoy Street north of state Route 52 — seven days a week, or drop them off at any of 15 other collection locations around the city through Jan. 23.

Photo by Matthew Bowler

An industrial wood chipper turns Christmas trees into mulch at the Miramar Landfill, Dec. 28, 2015.

The locations are:

• Carmel Valley, lower parking lot of the Carmel Valley Recreation Center, 3777 Townsgate Drive.

• Encanto, Cielo Drive at Woodman Street.

• Golden Hill, Golden Hill Recreation Center, 2600 Golf Course Drive.

• La Jolla, Kate Sessions Memorial Park, Soledad Road at Loring Street.

• Logan Heights, Memorial Recreation Center, 2902 Marcy Ave.

• Mission Bay, Sea World Drive at Pacific Highway.

• Oak Park, Chollas Lake, 6350 College Grove Drive.

• Ocean Beach, Robb Athletic Field Recreation Center, 2525 Bacon St.

• Otay Mesa/Nestor, lower-west parking lot of Montgomery Waller Community Park.

• Rancho Bernardo, Rancho Bernardo Recreation Center, 18448 W. Bernardo Drive.

• Rancho Penasquitos, Canyonside Recreation Center, 12350 Black Mountain Road.

• San Diego State University, Parking Lot D off Alvarado Road.

• Scripps Ranch, Scripps Ranch Recreation Center, 11454 Blue Cypress Drive.

• Tierrasanta, De Portola Middle School, 11010 Clairemont Mesa Blvd.

• University City, Swanson Pool, 3585 Governor Drive.

The program is available only to San Diego residents.

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