Here's how to dispose of Christmas trees, holiday trappings in Cedar Rapids, Marion, Iowa City

These discarded Christmas trees are piled up Jan. 19 at the Bertram Road trailhead of the Sac and Fox Trail in Cedar Rap
These discarded Christmas trees are piled up Jan. 19 at the Bertram Road trailhead of the Sac and Fox Trail in Cedar Rapids. Real Christmas trees can be left there again this year, to be chipped and used to line trails at the Indian Creek Nature Center. (Andy Abeyta/The Gazette)

When it’s time to un-deck the halls of your holiday home, Linn and Johnson county residents have options for keeping it green.

Cedar Rapids

• Christmas trees: Real, unflocked Christmas trees can be left beginning today at the Sac & Fox trail parking lot, Bertram Road and Wilder Drive SE; and Prairie Park Fishery, 2125 Otis Rd. SE. Both sites are open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., with signs posted indicating drop-off areas.

Remove all tinsel, ornaments, decorations, stands, watering packets, tree wrap and netting.

Trees left at the Sac & Fox lot will be chipped and used by the Indian Creek Nature Center on hiking trails. Those left at Prairie Park Fishery will be placed on the ice and become fish habitat as the ice melts.

Flocked trees, wreaths and garland cannot be recycled.

Curbside collection: Collection begins Monday. Cut natural trees into even halves or thirds, no longer than 6 feet each; trees should be no larger than 2 feet in diameter. Set tree piles at least 3 feet from your collection carts on your normal garbage day.

Trees also can be placed in your Yardy cart, but make sure the lid closes. And when it snows, make sure the trees are placed at the curb height — those placed on top of snow banks will not be collected.

Flocked Trees: These should be set out with your garbage. They must be cut into 3-foot sections, and each section needs a $1.50 garbage sticker.

Artificial (plastic) trees: These also are considered garbage and cannot be recycled. Cardboard tree boxes can’t go to the landfill and must be placed in your Curby recycling cart. If the tree can be broken down into 3-foot sections, each section needs a $1.50 sticker. If the tree can’t be separated into sections, call the Solid Waste & Recycling Office at (319) 286-5897 to arrange a pickup-up time. A $5 fee will be added to your next municipal utility bill.

Details: For more information, go to


Recycling: Holiday lights, batteries and electronics can be taken to the Linn County Solid Waste Agency site at 1954 County Home Rd., Marion. Regular hours are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, but the facility will close at 2 p.m. Dec. 31. Saturday hours are 7 a.m. to noon. Saturday appointments will be required beginning Jan. 9. For more information, go to

Iowa City

Christmas trees: Place natural, unflocked holiday trees at the curb by 7 a.m. on your regular collection day. Remove all decorations, and do not place the tree in a plastic bag.

Trees will not be picked up Thursday; collection will resume Jan. 4 on residents’ normal collection day. For more information, go to

Residents of Johnson County, Kalona and Riverside can dispose of trees free of charge at the Iowa City Landfill’s Compost Facility, 3900 Hebl Ave. SW.

Holiday lights: Drop off burned-out holiday lights at these locations through Jan. 10: East Side Recycling Center via ReStore Donations, 2401 Scott Blvd. SE, Iowa City, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday to Saturday; Iowa City Landfill and Recycling Center, 3900 Hebl Ave. SW, Iowa City; Coralville Hy-Vee, 1914 Eighth St.; Stuff Etc., 2818 Commerce Dr., Coralville; Coralville City Hall, 1512 Seventh St.; Coralville Recreation Center, 1506 Eighth St.

Recycling details: For lists of items accepted and not accepted at Iowa City and Coralville recycling sites, go to


Extra garbage: One free extra bag of garbage will be allowed the week following Christmas.

Trees: Real Christmas trees will be picked up curbside Monday through Jan. 8. Remove stands and decorations, and place at the curb on your regular collection day.

Flocked trees and those in plastic bags will not be picked up.

Details: For more information, go to

Linn County

If your garbage hauler does not pick up Christmas trees, they can be recycled for a $5 fee at the Solid Waste Agency landfill on County Home Road or the Compost and Yard Waste drop off at 2250 A St. SW in Cedar Rapids. Flocked trees are considered garbage and are not recyclable.

Comments: (319) 368-8508;

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