Riverside County Department of Waste Resources officials Monday reminded residents that two county landfills will accept discarded Christmas trees for recycling only until Saturday.
The Badlands Landfill at 31125 Ironwood Ave. in Moreno Valley and the Lamb Canyon Landfill at 16411 Lamb Canyon Road in Beaumont will take trees for free until the end of the week, but after that, disposal fees may apply, and the trees may not be diverted for recycling.
According to the county, residents can ensure trees are turned into "nutrient rich'' mulch by participating in the agency's curbside pickup program, or taking seasonal firs directly to the landfills.
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The recycling program involves turning tannenbaums into chips and combining them with food waste from the Smith Correctional Facility in Banning to create compost that enhances the soil onto which it's poured.
Trees must be stripped of decorations, including lights and tinsel, before they can be recycled. Flocked trees are not accepted and are supposed to be chopped up and put into trash bins.
Most trash haulers serving the county retrieve firs for recycling at least two weeks after Christmas.
Those residents who don't have curbside trash pickup, or who miss the deadline, can drop their trees, without charge, at the Beaumont and Moreno Valley pits, or one of the following locations:
-- A. Lua Wood Recycling, 18938 Mermack Ave., Lake Elsinore;
-- B.P. John Recycling, 28700 Matthews Road, Menifee;
-- Burrtec Recycle Center, 41-800 Corporate Way, Palm Desert; and
-- Burrtec/Nelson Transfer Station, 1830 Agua Mansa Road, Riverside.
The Menifee location is accepting firs for recycling the longest period of time -- until Jan. 31.
More information is available at http://www.rcwaste.org/wasteguide/holiday .