Christmas Tree Recycling


City of Calgary Christmas Recycling

The City of Calgary offers a great recycling program to help you dispose of your used Christmas trees responsibly.


From the City of Calgary web site:

December 2017

Important changes to this year's Christmas Tree Recycling Program


Make it a green Christmas and compost your real tree Help us keep trees out of the landfill by using your green cart or one of our many drop-off locations.

There are now two ways to compost your real tree:

1. Compost your real tree using your green cart

After you have removed all lights, ornaments, tinsel and string - follow the same steps as you would for branches from your yard:

Cut your tree into small pieces to put into your green cart and make sure the lid can close.

If your green cart is full, tie extra branches (no more than four feet long) together with a natural fibre string or place them in paper yard waste bags. Set tied branches or yard waste bags at least one foot from the side of your green cart.

Trees that are not prepared this way will not be collected.


2. Drop-off locations

Take your tree one of the following temporary drop-off locations between December 26 and Jan 31:

First, remove all ornaments, lights, tinsel and tree stands. Do not wrap, tie or bag your tree.

Bowness – 7937 43rd Ave N.W.

Confederation Park – East parking lot at 905 30th Ave N.W.

Prairie Winds Park – 223 Castleridge Blvd N.E.

Huntington Hills Athletic Park – 7920 4th St at Huntstrom Dr N.E.

Bottomlands Park – St. George's Dr and Seventh Ave N.E.

Marda Loop Communities Association – 3130 16th St S.W.

NEW: Haysboro – 8800 block of Elbow Dr S.W. (between Woodman Jr. High and St. Gerard's Church)

NEW: Optimist Athletic Park – 5020 26th Ave S.W.

Woodbine Athletic Park – 24th St and 127 Ave S.W.

Park 96 – 14660 Parkland Blvd S.E.

Pop Davies/Ogden Athletic Park – Ogden Rd & Millican Rd S.E.

IKEA – 8000 11th St S.E. (northwest corner of parking lot behind store)

A City Landfill (Free residential drop-off between Dec 26 and Jan 31)


Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I have to cut my tree up for Green Cart collection?

We require trees be cut up for composting because the pieces must be small enough to fit into your green cart. All of our collection trucks use the carts for automated collection, and we are unable to load materials manually. Even bagged or tied branches are placed into the green cart and then emptied into the truck.


What are the benefits of composting my Christmas tree?

Collected trees will be composted with the other food and yard waste collected through the Green Cart program. By composting your Christmas tree, you can keep waste out of our landfills and reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions.


Can we get any of the compost back?

There will be "Compost Give-Away" weekends in 2018 to provide free compost to residents. Details will be released in spring 2018.

Mulch is available for free to residents for gardening and landscaping at City landfills, while supplies last.

Can't I just put my tree in my black cart?


No. Food and yard waste must be put in your green cart. Black carts containing Christmas trees will not be collected.


Can I compost my evergreen wreath?

Yes, you can put your evergreen wreath in your green cart or it can be dropped off with your real tree at any of the drop-off locations. However, it needs to be stripped of all ornaments, bindings or wrappings.



For more information about the Christmas Tree Recycling Drop Off locations and the Program, visit calgary.ca/christmastree.





Recycling your tree isn't the only way to trim your holiday waste...


Reuse or recycle boxes, wrapping paper and other holiday packaging


"The giving and receiving of gifts means a lot of Christmas wrapping, boxes and other materials that can be reused or recycled," says Howland. "Save gift wrap, tags, boxes, gift bags and tissue paper to reuse for other special occasions and holidays."

Christmas packaging that can no longer be reused can go in your blue cart or be taken to a community recycling depot. Wrapping paper and tissue paper should be crumpled into balls and put in loose not bagged. We also suggest breaking down cardboard boxes so there is more room in your blue cart.

Ribbons, bows, and gift bag string handles can't be recycled – save them so they can be reused or throw them away in your black cart.



No-no items for recycling


Common items found on Christmas morning like foam packaging and foam packing peanuts can be placed in your black cart for regular garbage collection. This also includes foil or metallic-coated wrapping paper, broken ornaments, tinsel and artificial Christmas trees.



Reuse or donate your holiday items to give them a second life


"Many local charities accept donations of useable household goods at drop-off locations or offer a free pickup service," says Howland. "Common items for donation include gently used clothing and shoes, toys and board games."

Many televisions, computers and other gadgets are purchased during the holiday season so any old electronics can be recycled at locations across the city. "The electronics recycling program is also available to take your old TVs, laptops, and printers," says Howland. There are 25 locations around the city to drop off your used and broken electronics items. Do not put electronics in your blue cart.



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