If you’re heading out of town before Christmas, you’ll be happy to know that recycling sites open Dec. 19 to accept real Christmas trees so that you don’t have to come home to a crispy one.
Sedgwick County is adding Goddard as a drop-off site this year, bringing the number of county-run locations to 22 — 10 in Wichita and 12 in other small cities in the county. The sites are open through Jan. 12.
No matter where you recycle your tree, be sure to remove all decorations and lights. The trees will be chipped to produce mulch, which will be available for free on a first-come, first-served basis at the recycling sites. The mulch can be used above ground on paths and around plants, but is not meant to be worked into the soil.
The number of trees recycled at the county sites dropped a bit last year, to 5,353. The year before, 5,429 trees had been recycled. But the numbers were still quite a bit above 2010’s low, when 4,576 trees were recycled.
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The Great Plains Nature Center last year dethroned the Extension Center as the site with the most trees recycled.
The number of recycled trees at the nature center jumped to 946 last year from 716 the year before. The Extension Center collection fell more than 100 trees, to a low of 846 from 955 the year before. Edgemoor Park had the largest drop, to 578 from 782 the year before.
Boston Park saw a big increase, to 402 from 259 trees in 2012-2013.
Mount Hope and Earhart stayed exactly the same, at 14 and 55 trees recycled the past two years, respectively.
Where to recycle Christmas trees
Remove all lights and decorations before leaving your tree at one of these sites:
Boston Park, 6655 E. Zimmerly
Buffalo Park, 10209 Hardtner
College Hill United Methodist Church, First and Erie
Earhart Environmental Magnet School, 4401 N. Arkansas
Edgemoor Park, 5815 E. Ninth St.
Extension Center, 7001 W. 21st St.
Great Plains Nature Center, 6232 E. 29th St. North
Old Cowtown Museum, 1865 Museum Blvd.
Osage Park, 2121 W. 31st St. South
South Linwood Park, Hydraulic and Mount Vernon
Elsewhere in Sedgwick County:
Cheney, East South Avenue and Garfield
Clearwater, Aquatic Center parking lot
Colwich, 115 N. 3rd Street
Derby, 2801 E. James (northwest corner of High Park)
Garden Plain, at the water tower
Goddard, Means Park
Kechi, 107 Sioux St.
Maize, 201 S. Park
Mount Hope, 400 S. Thomas
Mulvane, 117 E. Main St.
Park City, 6801 N. Hydraulic
Valley Center, Veterans Park.
These areas are offering their own recycling programs:
Haysville, north of public works facility, 401 S. Jane
Andover, Central Park, north of compost bin, 1607 E. Central (Dec. 26 through Jan. 15)
Newton, Harvey County rodeo grounds, 700 W. 1st St. (starting Jan. 2)
Butler County: Trees can be recycled free of charge at the Butler County landfill, 2963 Southwest 40th Street, El Dorado. The landfill is open from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Saturday.