How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas TreesWhere and How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas Trees in South Carolina in January 2018

How to Recycle or Dispose of Christmas Trees

In many urban and suburban areas, Christmas trees are collected from curbside during the first 2 weeks in January. 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 usually accepted, 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 garbage hauler. But scrroll down this page for more specific information and local links.

What happens to the trees? In most cases, the trees are chipped and made into a mulch which is usually made available, free to city or county residents. Important: Never burn your Christmas tree in a fireplace or wood stove. Burning the tree may contribute to creosote buildup and could cause a chimney fire.

Tips: Always follow the links (usually the 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 (it's government, remember?). If your area is Grinding Christmas trees into mulchnot specifically mentioned below, contact your trash collection agency and inquire!

Related information:

See this page for local options to easily recycle your Christmas holiday lights

Click here for the list of winter sleigh ride locations!

See our easy recipes to make a Chocolate Yule log and click here to make your own low-fat, low calorie but delicious Egg Nog ! Then come back to our other website in March to find a local Easter Egg Hunt for your children !

South Carolina: Where and How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays

  • Anderson County - Drop off areas are located at Big Oaks Recreation area, Mount Lebanon Elementary School, Twin Lakes, Coneross, and Poplar Springs boat ramps. Before you bring a tree, make sure all the ornaments and tinsel are off of the branches. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will collect trees to use as fish attractors at Lake Hartwell. Only natural trees will be recycled. Artificial trees will not be accepted. Trees can be brought by through February 15.
  • Charleston - Bring a tree to Bees Ferry Landfill Jan. 2 - 9 and receive a free bag of compost. Charleston County's Environmental Management Department will be recycling real - not artificial - Christmas trees and turning them into compost for residents to use for gardening this spring. Residents can drop off their tree and receive a free bag of compost at the Bees Ferry Landfill (1344 Bees Ferry Road in West Ashley) between Jan. 2 - 9. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. All tinsel and ornaments must be removed from the Christmas trees before recycling. Charleston County residents who live within a municipality can recycle their trees without going to the Bees Ferry Landfill. These residents can put their Christmas tree on the curb for their municipality's yard waste pick-up or take it to their nearest convenience center. The municipality's haulers will then take the trees and other yard waste to Charleston County's Bees Ferry Landfill, where it is transformed into compost. Residents should check with their municipality to find out their yard waste pick-up day and other requirements. Click here for locations, updated information and more details.
  • Columbia, SC Area - Drop off locations. Remove all lights, tinsel and ornaments from the tree. Remove tree from stand. Drop off trees only - no wreaths, garland, or other greenery. Remove tree from bag and remove any string, wire, or ties on the tree. Christmas Tree Drop-off Locations:
    CITY OF COLUMBIA COMPOST FACILITY -121 Humane Lane, Columbia, SC. (Off Shop Road across from the SPCA). Open M-F, 8:30 am to 4:00 PM.
    CLEMSON INSTITUTE FOR ECONOMIC & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT - 900 Clemson Road.
    CROOKED CREEK PARK - 1098 Old Lexington Highway, Chapin, SC. (Next to Chapin Middle School.) Open daily 7:30 am to 11:00 PM.
    FORT JACKSON RECYCLING CENTER - BUILDING #6568 on Lee Road, Fort Jackson. (Enter the Fort through Gate 2 on Forest Drive. After Burger King, turn left onto Lee Road.) M-F, 7 am to 3:00 PM, Sat 8:30 - 3:30 PM.
    FRIARSGATE PARK - 1712 Chadford Rd., Irmo. M-F 2-9PM, Sat 9-8 PM, Sun 1-6PM
    HOLLOW CREEK TREE FARM - 228 Windmill Road, Gilbert, SC. Click here for more information.
    HOPKINS PARK - 150 Hopkins Park Road, Hopkins. M-F 2PM-9PM, Saturday9AM-8PM
    LEXINGTON COUNTY C&D LANDFILL - 498 Landfill Lane, Lexington, SC. Open M-Sat 7 am to 4:30 PM.
    LEXINGTON COUNTY SANDHILLS COLLECTION CENTER - 3241 Charleston Highway, Cayce, SC. Open Mon, Weds, Fri, Sat 7 am to 7:00 PM and Sun 3:00 - 7:00 PM
    LEXINGTON COUNTY SOUTHEAST COLLECTION CENTER - 538 Martin Neese Road, Swansea, SC. Open Mon, Weds, Fri, Sat 7 am to 7:00 PM and Sun 3:00 - 7:00 PM
    MEADOWLAKE PARK -600 Beckman Rd Columbia. M-F 2-9 PM, Sat 9-8 PM, Sun 1-6 PM
    POLO ROAD PARK - 730 Polo Road, Columbia. M-F 2-9PM, Sat 9-8 PM, Sun 1-6PM
    RICHLAND COUNTY C&D LANDFILL - 1070 Caughman Road North (off Monticello). Open M-F 7 am to 4:30 PM, Sat 7 am to 12:30 PM.
    RICHLAND COUNTY LOWER RICHLAND DROP-OFF CENTER - 10531 Garners Ferry Road. Open Mon-Sat 8 am to 6:30 PM, Sun 12:30 - 5:30 PM.
    SAXE GOTHA PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH - 5508 Sunset Blvd. (Highway 378), Lexington, SC.
    SEVEN OAKS PARK - 200 Leisure Lane, Columbia, SC, (Near the intersection of St. Andrews and Piney Grove Roads.)
    Free mulch made from the recycled trees will be available to the public at the following two locations on Saturday, January 14, from 9 AM until the mulch runs out: CLEMSON INSTITUTE FOR ECONOMIC & COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT (Clemson Road across from Village at Sandhills) and SEVEN OAKS PARK (200 Leisure Lane; near the intersection of St. Andrews & Piney Grove roads).
  • Greenville (City), SC - The City of Greenville annually holds the Grinding of the Greens Christmas tree recycling program. For the convenience of city residents, trees can be placed at the curb for collection on regularly scheduled pick-up days or taken to 1 of 4 convenient locations for recycling. All trees must be free of debris such as ornaments, tinsel, ribbons and lights to be recycled. Drop-off locations include:
    Gower Park at Laurel Creek Lane and Laurens Road
    Holmes Park at Twin Lakes Road and Holmes Drive
    Timmons Park, at Oxford Street and Blackburn Drive
    West Greenville Recreation Center at 8 Rochester Street
    The locations listed will be open through mid-January. Curbside pick-up within the city limits will continue for as long as needed.
    Other Christmas Recycling: All holiday boxes, tissue paper and wrapping paper (except foil-lined) can be recycled at the curb and at the following locations:
    City's Stone Avenue Recycling Center at 800 East Stone Avenue
    North Greenville Recycling Center at 514 Rutherford Road
  • Greenville County - is offering a convenient way to recycle your real Christmas trees after the holidays; it's the annual "Grinding of the Greens" event sponsored by the Greenville County Solid Waste Division and Recycling. Real Christmas trees are 100 percent biodegradable; thus can be ground into mulch, which will be available, free of charge to the public at the Twin Chimneys Landfill. By recycling Christmas trees, precious landfill space will be preserved. Don't forget about Christmas wrapping paper, cards, and gift boxes! These items can be recycled too. Provide some peace on the Earth and goodwill toward the environment.
  • Horry County, SC - Grinding of the Greens from December 26 to January 25. Horry County Solid Waste Authority. Phone: 843-347-1651. Email: info@solidwasteauthority.org . The Horry County Solid Waste Authority encourages you to take one extra step to make the holidays green and bright, RECYCLE your natural Christmas tree after the season. Simply remove all lights, decorations (including tinsel) and the tree stand. Then, bring your tree to a designated area to be chipped and RECYCLED into FREE landscaping mulch. The mulch will be available to all citizens while supplies last. Bring your own container to collect the mulch. No wreaths, please. Contact (843)347-1651 for more details.
  • Spartanburg, SC - Spartanburg County residents can drop off their Christmas trees, free or ornaments at the county's 17 recycling centers which are all accepting discarded trees. The trees will be ground into mulch. The landfill will accept real trees, to be ground into much, and also artificial trees. Spartanburg City Residents will have curbside pick up of trees with normal trash and yard waste. Inside the city, there is no end date for crews to pick up the trees.
  • Sumter County - Every Sumter resident will have an opportunity to donate their real Christmas tree until January 17. Before donating your tree to the "Grinding of the Greens", please note the following: Only live Christmas trees will be accepted-no wreaths, garland, greenery or tree stands. Please remove all tinsel, lights and decorations. You can drop off your Christmas tree at one of the following sites until January 17:
    County Recycling Centers: Rainaire Boulevard, Stamey Livestock Road, Cane Savannah Road, Pinewood Road, Queen Chapel Road, Bethel Church Road, Alligator Branch Road, Pleasant Grove and Spencer Road
    At the entrance to Dillon Park (off Frontage Road)
    On Saturday, January 19 from 7 a.m. to 10:00 a.m., at Dillon Park, FREE MULCH made from Christmas trees will be distributed to residents by volunteers on a first-come, first-served basis. If you would like to have some mulch, bring containers or bags, tools to pick it up and a way to haul it. Even those who do not donate a tree can receive mulch. This is the only time mulch will be distributed and it will be distributed to residents only - no commercial enterprises.
    For more information about recycling your Christmas tree, contact Sumter County Public Works at 436-2241. Click here for locations, updated information and more details.