Home » If you want Denver to recycle your Christmas tree this year, you’ll have to drop it off yourself.
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If you want Denver to recycle your Christmas tree this year, you’ll have to drop it off yourself.

Trees left out for large-item pick up will not be composted.

If Denver residents want their Christmas trees mulched or composted this year, they’re going to have to drop them off themselves.

The city’s Treecycle program is a drop-site only this year. The Denver Department of Transportation and Infrastructure made the change to focus on large item pickups this month.

DOTI spokesperson Nancy Kuhn said only about 11% of DOTI’s customers participate in tree recycling. Trees left our for large-item pick up will not be composted.

“By asking these 20,000 or so customers to utilize our drop-sites in 2023, our crews can provide monthly large item pickup service to all 180,000 customers starting in January instead of in February as we did last year in order to collect trees,” Kuhn said in an email.

Kuhn says crews were on an every night eight-week large item pickup schedule prior to 2022. They are now on an every four-week pickup schedule.

“To do both programs at the same time would require an expansion of staff, instead we’re making more equitable use of our existing resources,” Kuhn said.

She said there’s no shortage in staff and that Solid Waste Management is currently 98% staffed.

The Treecycle program runs now through Jan. 31.

The following locations will be open from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday.

  • Cherry Creek Transfer Station – 7301 E. Jewell Ave.
  • Havana Nursery – 10450 Smith Rd.
  • Central Platte Campus – 1271 W. Bayaud Ave.

Note, Cherry Creek, Havana, and Central Platte locations will be closed Jan. 16 for Martin Luther King Jr.Day.

As for some weekend drop sites, these locations will be open on Saturdays Jan.14, 21, and 28, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

  • Sloan’s Lake Northwest Parking Lot – W. Byron Pl. and Yates St.
  • Bruce Randolph – E.40th Ave. and Steele St.
  • Fred Thomas Park – 2400 Quebec St.
  • Evie Dennis School Campus – 4800 Telluride St.
  • Central Platte Campus – 1271 W. Bayaud Ave.
  • Carson Elementary – 5420 E. 1st Ave.
  • Kennedy High School – Newland St. and Brown Pl.
  • Slavens Elementary – 3000 S. Clayton St.
  • Congress Park – 850 N. Josephine St.

Reverting to a drop-site only program has brought criticism from the Denver City Council and the community.

Councilwoman At-Large Debbie Ortega voiced her concerns during this weeks regular council meeting. She felt some residents, especially the older population, would have trouble getting to the drop-sites.

“For an elderly person who has a family member that brings them a tree, now they’re gonna have to figure out how they get it to a dropoff location as opposed to our trash system being able to pick that up,” Ortega said. “It may not sound like a big deal, but for somebody who’s trying to figure out how to get that out of their alley, it is a concern.”