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After celebration is over, consider recycling your Christmas tree

City of Sacramento, county offer options to turn trees into mulch

Do your holiday traditions include a live Christmas tree? When it's time to take it down, consider recycling it as mulch.

Do your holiday traditions include a live Christmas tree? When it's time to take it down, consider recycling it as mulch. Kathy Morrison

Merry Christmas! Now that the gifts are all open, it’s time to consider: What’s next for the tree?

If your celebratory conifer was a real tree, it could be recycled into mulch for your garden or a local park.

Living Christmas trees – those in pots with roots – should get back outdoors ASAP. They need sun, water and air. Conifers don’t make good houseplants.

Real Christmas trees – once living, but by now pretty dead – can be recycled. The City of Sacramento as well as Sacramento County turn old trees into mulch that can help save water as well as add nutrients to soil.

For Sacramento city residents with curbside trash pick-up, trees can be left in the street or cut up and placed in the green waste container. “The Claw” will pick up trees through Jan. 29. Please keep trees out of bike lanes and away from storm drains, the city says.

Flocked trees will be accepted. Please remove all tinsel, decorations, lights, nails and tree stands.

In addition, several free drop-off events are scheduled around the county:

-- 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6; SMUD Corporation Yard, 6100 Folsom Blvd., Sacramento. Get your tree mulched for free and take home the mulch to use in your garden. Bring large trash bags or containers to cart home the mulch.

-- 8 a.m.-6 p.m Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 6 and 7; North Area Recovery Station, 4450 Roseville Road, North Highlands.

-- 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 6 and 7; Kiefer Landfill, 12701 Kiefer Blvd., Rancho Cordova. Directions: From Jackson Highway, go north on Grant Line, then right on Kiefer Boulevard.

-- 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6; Elder Creek Recovery and Transfer, 8642 Elder Creek Road, Sacramento. Directions: From Jackson Highway, go south on Florin Perkins Road, then left on Elder Creek Road.

-- 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6; Sacramento Recycling & Transfer Station, 8491 Fruitridge Road, Sacramento. This site is also accepting trees weekdays through Jan. 7. Directions: From Jackson Highway, go south on Florin Perkins Road, then right on Fruitridge Road.

-- 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 6; Dan Russell Rodeo Arena, Rodeo Park, end of Stafford Street, Folsom.

For more details: https://rb.gy/mjdiko or  https://bit.ly/3YSEqQP

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Garden Checklist for week of June 23

Get to work in the mornings while it’s still cool.

* Irrigate early in the day; your plants will appreciate it.

* Generally, tomatoes need deep watering two to three times a week, but don't let them dry out completely. That can encourage blossom-end rot.

* Let the grass grow longer. Set the mower blades high to reduce stress on your lawn during summer heat. To cut down on evaporation, water your lawn deeply during the early hours of the morning, between 2 and 8 a.m.

* Tie up vines and stake tall plants such as gladiolus and lilies. That gives their heavy flowers some support.

* Dig and divide crowded bulbs after the tops have died down.

* Feed summer flowers with a slow-release fertilizer.

* Mulch, mulch, mulch! This “blanket” keeps moisture in the soil longer and helps your plants cope during hot weather.

* Avoid pot “hot feet.” Place a 1-inch-thick board under container plants sitting on pavement. This little cushion helps insulate them from radiated heat.

* Thin grapes on the vine for bigger, better clusters later this summer.

* Cut back fruit-bearing canes on berries.

* Feed camellias, azaleas and other acid-loving plants. Mulch to conserve moisture and reduce heat stress.

* Cut back Shasta daisies after flowering to encourage a second bloom in the fall.

* Trim off dead flowers from rose bushes to keep them blooming through the summer. Roses also benefit from deep watering and feeding now. A top dressing of aged compost will keep them happy. It feeds as well as keeps roots moist.

* Pinch back chrysanthemums for bushier plants with many more flowers in September.

* From seed, plant corn, pumpkins, radishes, melons, squash and sunflowers.

* Plant basil to go with your tomatoes. 

* Transplant summer annuals such as petunias, marigolds and zinnias.

* It’s also a good time to transplant perennial flowers including astilbe, columbine, coneflowers, coreopsis, dahlias, rudbeckia, salvia and verbena.

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