The Loose-in-the-Steets pickup will be going on through the second week of January.

The Loose-in-the-Streets Christmas Tree pickup will be going on through the second week of January.

New Year’s Day tends to be the day that California citizens as well as Americans in general start taking down the cheerful Christmas decorations and lights in order to make room for what the next year will bring. Storing the boxes and putting everything back on the shelves can be quite a chore on its own, but one thing that can specifically make people groan is the removal of the live Christmas tree.

If this year you decided to have something other than plastic to string your lights around and use as a canopy for Santa’s presents, you know what we’re talking about. Finding a place to put the tree when you’re done with it can present a problem. It saddens many to look out the window in early January and see used fir trees littering the gutters and sidewalks, only to be taken to a landfill.

However, the tree can be beneficial even after the holidays. With the citywide Loose-in-the-Streets holiday tree pick-up, your Christmas tree doesn’t have to be detrimental to the environment by filling up landfills. The pickup began in late October and will go on until January 14th. Just place up to five trees out at the curb and the city will take them and have them recycled, free of charge.

If you just didn’t find the time to put out your tree, you can chop up your tree and place it in your green waste bin to be recycled on the next pickup day. Or, for those of us who live in gated communities, the trees can be taken to a recycling center such as the SMUD Corporation Yard, the North Area Recovery Station, or the Elder Creek Recovery and Transfer Center.

The Loose-in-the-Streets organization isn’t only for Christmas trees. Any kind of yard waste will be picked up free of charge. To see what items are acceptable and not acceptable, you can go here. However, the pickup will no longer be offered after July 1st, 2013.

For more information on the Loose-in-the-Streets pickup and recycling locations, you can go here.