Christmas tree recycling

Scroll down this page for local Thurston County, Washington State recycling and responsible disposal options for holiday waste, from Christmas trees and wreathes, to lights, ornaments, wrapping and packaging. Many towns and cities offer curbside collection, even for Christmas trees. Counties and unicorporated areas typically have a number or drop-off locations.

Christmas trees are usually colllected from December 26th through the first 2 or 3 weeks in January.  Whether your tree is picked up from your curb,Grinding Christmas trees into mulch or you drop it off, be sure to remove all  remove all lights, wire, tinsel, ornaments, nails, stands,  other NON-Organic decorative materials and other materials that are not part of the original tree. This includes tree stands also.  Flocked trees are occasionally accepted (call to verify), but not artificial trees. Large trees (larger than the standard 6 - 7 ft tree) may need to be cut in half to be acceptable by your curbside garbage hauler.

The trees and wreathes are usually chipped and made into a mulch which is ofteny made available, free to city or county residents.

Ornaments and light strings are usually placed into your curbside collection bin.  Some localities have year-round collection centers. The same is true of wrapping paper and boxes.

Always follow the links (usually the blue, underlined name of the city or county) below for updated information, as these agencies often wait until the last minute to change dates or update their information. If your area is not specifically mentioned below, call your trash collection agency and ask!

Thurston County, Washington State: Where and How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays January 2022


  • Thurston County, WA - Questions? Call (360) 867-2491. Residents​ can have their Christmas Tree Recycled after the holiday season, free Christmas tree collection and drop-off opportunities are available county-wide. To prepare your tree for recycling, please remove all ornaments, lights, stands, nails, and tinsel prior to drop-off. Flocked trees are accepted.
    Drop-off: Trees are accepted at the Thurston County Waste and Recovery Center (WARC) from Saturday, December 26, to Sunday, January 16, 2022 (closed January 1). The WARC is open Monday to Friday from 7:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. 
    Thurston County Waste & Recovery Center
    2420 Hogum Bay Rd NE, Lacey, WA 98516
    Phone: (360) 786-5494.
  • City of Lacey residents: Local Boy Scouts will pick up trees within city limits.  BSA Troop 222 Scouts will provide curbside pick-up of holiday trees on Saturday, January 8, 2022 for residents within Lacey city limits. Trees must have all decorations removed and be placed curbside in front of homes by 8:00 a.m. Troop 222 accepts donations for this great community service, which can be made online at Troop 222, or BSA Troop 222, PO Box 5379, Lacey, WA 98509. For more information contact Lacey Public Affairs, 360-491-3214 or email [email protected] .
  • City of Olympia  garbage customers: For customers with
    Tuesday/Wednesday service, tree pickup will be on January 8, 2022.
    For Thursday/Friday service, pickup will be on January 15, 2022.
    Place tree in regular pickup spot by 6:00 a.m. Trees over 6 feet must be cut in half. Call City of Olympia at 360-754-8340 for more information.
  • City of Tumwater Residents may place undecorated trees behind the curb near their closest main intersection beginning January 10. Please be sure to keep sidewalks, bike lanes, and roadways clear when dropping off trees. It may take several days for crews to pick up all trees. For more information, please contact Tumwater Public Works Operations at 360-754-4150.
    Multi-family complex residents: Check with your property manager for tree placement locations.
  • City of Tenino residents can take trees to 418 S. Wichman St from December 26 - January 16, 2022.
  • City of Yelm residents can place trees in designated dumpster at Yelm City Park anytime from December 26 through January 16, 2022 or until full.
  • LeMay yard/food waste customers: Place your tree in or near your yard/food waste cart (in sections 3 feet or less). Extra fee(s) apply for customers not signed up for yard/food waste collection. Call LeMay at 360-923-0111 for information.
  • Thurston County Rochester and Rainier have Drop-Box Facilities for trees
  • Rainier residents: Take trees for free to the Rainier Drop-Box Facility at 13010 Rainier Acres Rd. from December 26 - January 16, 2022 (open Friday - Sunday only, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Closed January 1.).
  • Rochester residents: Take trees for free to the Rochester Drop-Box Facility at 16500 Sargent Road from December 26 - January 16, 2022 (open Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday only, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
  • All other areas of the state (just enter your zip code on the page that comes up)


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