Tuesday, January 1, 2013
Plano offers Christmas tree recycling through January 6
It's the circle of life at three convenient collection locations.
PLANO Christmas has come and gone, which means many people are stuck with Christmas trees that they need to dispose of.
Rather than simply throwing trees away and adding to landfills, the city of Plano is encouraging people to recycle their trees. Three drop-off locations have been set up throughout the city, where trees are collected for recycling.
“By doing this you are being a responsible steward of the earth,” said Sherrian Jones, compost sales and marketing manager at Texas Pure Products. “You are taking a usable product and turning it into something that can be reused.”
Texas Pure Products is a joint venture between the city of Plano and the North Texas Municipal Water District that collects Christmas trees as well as yard trimmings from Plano, Allen, Frisco, McKinney, and Richardson. The collected material is put through wood chippers and eventually turned into organic mulch, compost, top dressing, and planting mix.
The collected Christmas trees are taken to Texas Pure Product's facility in northern Plano where the mulch-making process begins.
“We can grind anything made out of wood, including cardboard,” said Ken Fontenot, a worker at the processing facility. “However, we can't use anything that is painted or stained since you don't want those chemicals in your yard.”
Once the materials are ground, they are transported to the Regional Composting Facility in Melissa, where the final steps in the mulch- and compost-making process are carried out, Fontenot said. At that point, the material is transported back to the Plano facility, where it is bagged and sold at garden centers across Collin County.
Jones said using mulch and compost can affect more than the quality of the plants: It can also affect the pocketbook of the garden's owner.
“You are able to lower your water bill by up to 50 percent by putting compost and mulch in your garden, because it prevents erosion by stopping the water runoff,” she said. “You don't have to pay for a big, huge water bill and then watch the water run off into the street.
“Using compost and mulch is also better for the environment. Many of us use chemicals and fertilizers on our yard, and if you can stop the water runoff, you can prevent these chemicals from getting into the water supply.”
Christmas trees are being accepted from now until January 6 at High Point Park, 6500 Alma Drive; Preston Meadow Park, 4243 Lorimar Drive; and Russell Creek Park, 3500 McDermott Road. For information, visit livegreeninplano.com or call 972-769-4150.
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