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O Christmas Tree, It's Time To Go

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Tana Weingartner
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WVXU

Christmas is over and your once glorious evergreen seems to have lost its luster and is dropping pine needles on the floor.

It's time to cart your fir or spruce off for recycling.Nature centers and others are looking to make use of your trees. One of the more popular options is turning pine trees into wood chips.

"We actually mulch up the trees that people drop off for us and we use it on our trails," says Kaitlyn Blansett, community outreach director at Cope Environmental Center in Centerville, Indiana.

She adds it may seem like a silly reminder, but don't forget to take everything off your tree before leaving it for recycling.

"You have to take off the ornaments and the lights," she says with a little laugh. "You would be surprised at how many people just drop off a completely decorated tree... Make sure you have stripped your tree bare and it's just all the natural components left."

That includes taking off every bit of tinsel and removing strands of popcorn and cranberries, even though you may think there's no reason to remove the organic material.

"You run into problems with the strings when you leave [popcorn and cranberries] on. People have that out there for the animals, but it's also possible for them to choke on that string."

Some communities offer curbside tree recycling. Many parks and nature centers accept trees to be turned into mulch.

Tana Weingartner earned a bachelor's degree in communication from the University of Cincinnati and a master's degree in mass communication from Miami University. Prior to joining Cincinnati Public Radio, she served as news and public affairs producer with WMUB-FM. Ms. Weingartner has earned numerous awards for her reporting, including several Best Reporter awards from the Associated Press and the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and a regional Murrow Award. She enjoys snow skiing, soccer and dogs.