I’m always amazed at people who put their Christmas trees at the curb as trash headed for a landfill the day after Christmas. For one, the tree is already being chopped down which is dubious environmentally but I can also understand the festive part of wanting one. But at least let the tree play that role, live (sort of) as long as possible … Anyway, the next step can be to “recycle” the tree into mulch which is being offered via on-site “chippers” beginning this weekend at NYC Parks, including Washington Square Park. There are two Saturdays this year; chipping is available on Saturday, January 4th and Saturday, January 11th.
From the NYC Parks Department:
Saturday, Jan. 4 and Saturday, Jan. 11
10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
Bring your tree to a chipping site on Chipping Saturdays to take home a tree-mento! We’ll chip your tree and give you your very own bag of mulch to use in your backyard or to make a winter bed for a street tree. To participate, just look for a chipping site on the map or list.
Please remember to remove all lights, ornaments, and netting before bringing the tree to a Mulchfest site. Bags will be provided if you wish to take some free mulch home.
When I watch the trees sadly make their way through the chipper, I tend to side with Phoebe from “Friends”* (see video below) but this fate is better than ending up in a landfill. The trees are chopped into wood chips which are used to “nourish” trees and plantings city-wide.
Dates & time: Saturday, January 4th and Saturday, January 11th
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Washington Square Park & City-wide
I noted in 2018 that the NYC Parks Department said more than 30,000 trees were “recycled” in 2016; the city agency noted that more than 26,000 trees were chipped in 2017, so the number went down significantly – did less people buy trees or did fewer people “treecycle?” In 2018, the number noted is 28,000 so it went up again. Still, there are so many already at the curb.
* In case you don’t get the Phoebe/“Friends” television show reference, watch this:
Check out these great photos of around this time of year MulchFest & park happenings in 2014 here.