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Here's How To Recycle Your Christmas Tree In Kentucky

Ryan Van Velzer

Sick of cleaning pine needles off the living room floor? Give your Christmas tree a second life this January as mulch or fish habitat.

Louisville residents have a number of ways to dispose of Christmas trees this year.

The Kentucky Division of Fish and Wildlife would be happy to take that dried-out tree off your hands. Staff bundle the trees and place them in lakes across the state. The bundles provide food sources and protective cover for Kentucky fish and other aquatic species.

“Christmas for the Fishes gives people the opportunity to participate in our year-round conservation efforts,” said Joseph Zimmerman, habitat program coordinator for Kentucky Fish and Wildlife. “Instead of your tree going to a landfill, it can be recycled into something that directly helps our fish and wildlife.”

Tree projects are planned for Boltz Lake, Corinth Lake and Barren River Lake.

Fish and Wildlife has 39 drop-off locations across the state. The agency prefers whole trees to limbs, wreaths or other brush for fish habitat.

Bernheim Research Forest and Arboretum will turn your tree to mulch for use around the park. Visitors can drop their trees off at the turnaround to the left of the front gate throughout January.

“You can just drop your tree off and we’ll clear it out and we recycle them for use in the arboretum,” said Amy Landon, spokeswoman.

Louisville Metro has its own program to turn your Christmas tree to compost. Residents with curbside yard waste pickup can simply set out their old trees on regular pickup days.

Alternatively, anyone can drop off their trees Tuesday through Saturday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at one of these four locations through January 31.

Louisville Metro Drop Off Locations:

  • East District Recycling Center, 595 N. Hubbards Lane
  • Public Works Yard, 10500 Lower River Road (enter from Bethany Lane)
  • Shawnee Park, 4501 W. Broadway (by Little League baseball field in rear of park)
  • Waste Reduction Center, 636 Meriwether Avenue (closes at 3 p.m. on Saturdays.)
Ryan Van Velzer is WFPL's Energy and Environment Reporter. Email Ryan at rvanvelzer@lpm.org.

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