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County still has time to recycle trees

Photo by Corinne Nicholson

Photo by Corinne Nicholson

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Piles of Christmas trees at Rhodes Jordan Park show Gwinnett residents are continuing the tradition of recycling their firs, pines and spruces.

It's a little too early, however, to gauge how this year's Bring One for the Chipper program compares to years past, said Connie Wiggins, executive director of Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful. Many people bring their trees to a recycling location after Jan. 10, she said.

"Based on the number of calls we've received, it seems like more people are interested in recycling their Christmas trees," Wiggins said.

Traditionally, Gwinnett is the leading community in the state for recycling Christmas trees, Wiggins said. About one out of every three Christmas trees recycled in Georgia comes from Gwinnett.

"I believe this shows how committed our citizens are for doing good things for the environment," she said.

Residents can recycle their live Christmas trees by dropping them off at designated fire stations throughout the county until Jan. 16. The trees should be stripped of all lights and decorations.

The collected trees will be chipped into mulch on Jan. 23 at Keep Georgia Beautiful's annual Bring One for the Chipper program.

Wiggins said she encourages people to recycle their trees because the resulting mulch will be used to beautify county parks and school grounds. The mulch also helps with erosion control. Furthermore, recycling the trees keeps them out of landfills.

"It's a good way to give a gift back to nature," she said.

Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful is still looking for volunteers for the Bring One for the Chipper event at Rhodes Jordan Park in Lawrenceville. Those interested in volunteering can sign up online at www.gwinnettcb.org or call 770-822-5187. Volunteers must be at least 12 years old.