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Merry Christmas! (Now what to do about that tree?)

Sacramento offers options for pick-up and drop-off

Top of Christmas tree with angel
As lovely as a real tree is for Christmas, it does
need to be disposed of after the holidays.
Recycling or composting is best. (Photo:
Kathy Morrison)

Is your Christmas tree (almost) ready for recycling?

The City of Sacramento makes Christmas tree recycling relatively easy. Real trees (not the fake kind) are considered green waste and can be added to the street leaf piles out front. Last pick-up is Jan. 24.

Or the tree can be cut up and put into the green waste container. (Make sure the lid can still close.)

Before putting the tree in the street or the waste container, remove any tinsel or other decorations, tree stands, lights or nails. Flocked trees will be accepted.

In addition to tree pick-up, Sacramento offers tree recycling drop-off locations, specifically for business and residents that don’t get street service. The trees are turned into mulch.

The dates, times and locations for those free drop-off events:

* Sacramento Recycling and Transfer Station, 8491 Fruitridge Road, Sacramento
8 a.m to 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9
Note: This location also accepting trees Dec. 26-Jan. 9, Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
* SMUD Corporation Yard, 6100 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento
8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9
*North Area Recovery Station, 4450 Roseville Road, North Highlands
8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 9 and 10
* Kiefer Landfill, 12701 Kiefer Blvd., Sloughhouse
8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 9 and 10
* Elder Creek Recovery and Transfer, 8642 Elder Creek Road, Sacramento
8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9

For more details: .

- Debbie Arrington


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For week of March 3:

* Celebrate the city flower! Catch the 100th Sacramento Camellia Show 3 to 6 p.m. Saturday, March 2, and 10 a.m to 5 p.m. Sunday, March 3, at the Scottish Rite Center, 6151 H St., Sacramento. Admission is free.

* Between showers, pick up fallen camellia blooms; that helps cut down on the spread of blossom blight that prematurely browns petals.

* Feed camellias after they bloom with fertilizer formulated for acid-loving plants.

* Camellias need little pruning. Remove dead wood and shape, if necessary.

* Tread lightly or not at all on wet ground; it compacts soil.

* Avoid digging in wet soil, too; wait until it clumps in your hand but doesn’t feel squishy.

* Note spots in your garden that stay wet after storms; improve drainage with the addition of organic matter such as compost.

* Keep an eye out for leaning trunks or ground disturbances around a tree’s base, a sign of shifting roots in the wet soil.

* Fertilize roses, annual flowers and berries as spring growth begins to appear.

* If aphids are attracted to new growth, knock them off with a strong spray of water or insecticidal soap. To make your own “bug soap,” use two tablespoons liquid soap – not detergent – to one quart water in a spray bottle. Shake it up before use. Among the liquid soaps that seem most effective are Dr. Bronner’s Pure-Castile Soaps; try the peppermint scent.

* Pull weeds now! Don’t let them get started. Take a hoe and whack them as soon as they sprout.

* Prune and fertilize spring-flowering shrubs after bloom.

* Cut back and fertilize perennial herbs to encourage new growth.

* Make plans for your summer garden. Once the soil is ready, start adding amendments such as compost.

* Indoors, start seeds for summer favorites such as tomatoes, peppers and squash as well as summer flowers.

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