If you opted for a natural tree this year, you'll soon face the question of how best to dispose of it. Fortunately, most Northwest cities offer good alternatives to the landfill, including:
- dedicated recycling events in Washington and Oregon (call first or check your city's website to confirm this year's dates and times)
- curbside green recycling
- service-club fundraisers (scout troops, for example, often will haul away your tree for recycling, with an optional donation)
- fire-station collection sites (check with your city – some collect them for free to reduce fire risks)
- chipping it to create mulch for your garden
- donating it to a local goat farmer provided it hasn't been sprayed with flocking or fire retardant and has been thoroughly stripped of decorations. (Check out this video from Minnesota. You won't believe how they go for it!).
The one thing you absolutely shouldn't do: Burn it in the fireplace, since dry trees burn hot and fast and can lead to a chimney fire.