EBR again provides Christmas tree recycling service

After the presents are unwrapped and the Christmas tree starts looking a little droopy, don’t just throw the tree in the trash. East Baton Rouge Parish residents have the opportunity to recycle Christmas trees either at the curb or at several drop-off points across the parish.

Drop-off points will open starting Thursday and will remain open through Jan. 31, or residents can set out their Christmas trees on the curb for recycling between Jan. 6 and Jan. 18 in areas of the parish outside Baker and Zachary.

Trees should be as clean as possible with lights, metal stands and tinsel removed.

“It’s important to put the tree out separate from any trash piles,” said Susan Hamilton, city-parish recycling director.

The trees are picked up in rear-loader or brush trucks. Some people have been concerned the trees are just being taken to the dump, but they aren’t, Hamilton said.

The cleaned trees are taken to a recycling facility in north Baton Rouge where they will be made into mulch sold in stores as “Nature’s Best Organics.”

The recycling office has been offering Christmas tree recycling for years and for a time the trees were going to a few coastal restoration projects where they were used to try to prevent shoreline erosion. Although some coastal parishes still do something similar for smaller projects, the state program no longer exists.

Not many trees end up in the landfill, Hamilton said, because parish residents are used to the recycling program. Normally, there are about 150 to 200 tons of trees picked up for recycling every season.

Drop-off collection containers will be set up at the following locations starting Thursday:

Independence Park, 7500 Independence Blvd.

Highland Road Park, 14024 Highland Road.

Kathy Drive Park, enter off O’Neal Lane by Team Toyota.

Flannery Road Park, 801 S. Flannery.

Pecue Wood Recycling Facility, 9455 Pecue Lane.

LSU, Skip Bertman Drive.

There will be no curbside recycling on Christmas Day or New Year’s Day.

Make-up days for Wednesday’s recycling will be Thursday and Friday. The Jan. 1 make-up days are Jan. 2 and Jan. 3.