Christmas Tree Recycling Program runs Jan. 1-15

Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful Executive Director Lori Gummow reminds area residents to recycle their Christmas trees. (Photo provided)

Staff Report

LOVES PARK, Ill. — Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful (KNIB) has added a new drop-off location to its Christmas Tree Recycling Program, which runs Jan. 1-15, 2012.

The following drop-off sites are unmanned and open 24 hours a day:

• Don Schmid Youth Sports Center/Riverdahl Park, Rockford

Blackhawk Park/100 — 15th Ave., Rockford

Levings Lake/East entrance off Johnston Avenue, Rockford

Andrews Park, 800 N. Central Ave., Rockford

Gambino Park/Pepper Drive off North Alpine Road, Rockford

Alpine Park, 900 S. Alpine Road, Rockford

Martin Park/Park Ridge Road off Riverside Boulevard, Loves Park

Machesney Park Village Hall/300 Machesney Road, Machesney Park

Baumann Park, behind South Walnut maintenance building, Cherry Valley

Williams Tree Farm, 4661 Yale Bridge Road, north Winnebago County

Rockton Boat Ramp Parking Lot, off Hononegah Road, Rockton

Valley View Farms, 6440 Belvidere Road, Roscoe

Pecatonica Wetlands Forest Preserve, 4550 N. Pecatonica Road, Pecatonica

No tree recycling will be offered at the Westlake Village location.

Residents are reminded to wrap their trees in reusable bed sheets instead of disposable tree bags. Trees must be completely bare with no tree stand.

KNIB Executive Director Lori Gummow said: “We ask that everything be removed from the tree. They are put through large chippers that could be damaged by forgotten ornaments or lights. Crew members may also be harmed by foreign objects in the equipment. This is why we cannot accept pine wreaths with metal frames. Flocked trees are also not accepted, as the white flocking material is not biodegradable.”

Mulch is created as the trees are chipped and is available at no charge to area residents for use in their landscaping; it is a durable ground cover that reduces weeds and retains moisture. Acid-loving plants benefit from the nutrients in the mulch.

The pine mulch is available on a first come, first served basis,” Gummow said. “Residents need to bring their own shovel and containers. In 23 years, the Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful’s Christmas Tree Recycling Program has created 1 million pounds of pine mulch from over one-half million trees.”

For more details, visit or call (815) 637-1343.

From the Dec. 28, 2011-Jan. 3, 2012, issue

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