Caring Christmas Trees
Caring Christmas Trees

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Where to recycle your tree after Christmas

The Christmas festivities have sadly ended and the leftovers are almost gone, but what do you do with your tree?

Luckily, your council has provided the following information on how to go about recycling your tree.

City of Edinburgh

You can recycle your Christmas tree by removing its base and decorations then placing it on the kerbside on your scheduled brown bin day.  We’ll collect your tree and recycle it into compost.  If your tree is 6ft tall or higher, please cut it in half first.

East Dunbartonshire

Skips for Christmas trees will go out to the following locations on 3rd January 2018

  • Allander Sports Centre, Bearsden Milngavie Road, Glasgow G61 3DF
  • Mavis Valley Recycling Centre, Balmuildy Rd, Bishopbriggs, Glasgow G64 3QQ
  • William Patrick Library, 2-4 W High St, Kirkintilloch, Glasgow G66 1AD
  • There will also be a one off garden collection in January, please keep an eye on the East Dunbartonshire Council website for further details regarding this.

East Lothian

If you have a brown bin, your tree can be placed next to the bin kerbside on your collection day. Alternatively, you can call 01875 824 305 to arrange an uplift or take your tree to one of the Recycling Centres:

  • Kinwegar Recycling Centre, A199 Haddington Road (near Wallyford Toll), Wallyford, EH21 8JU
  • North Berwick Recycling Centre, Heugh Brae, North Berwick, EH39 5PS
  • Dumbar Community Recycling Centre, Spott Road Industrial Estate, Dunbar, EH42 1RS
  • Macmerry Recycling Centre, Macmerry Industrial Estate, Macmerry, EH33 1RD


You can recycle your real Christmas tree for free, by cutting it up and putting it in your brown bin or taking your real Christmas tree to any Recycling Centre in Fife.  All recycling centres are open 7 days a week, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. (last entry), and are open on most public holidays except 25 and 26 December and 1 and 2 January.

Glasgow City

For households with a brown bin, real Christmas trees can be placed in your bin for kerbside collection. The brown bin is collected every two weeks as indicated by the dates in your managed weekly recycling calendar.  Please note potential change of date if your scheduled collection falls on Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Day and 2nd January.

Please cut the tree into manageable pieces and ensure that the lid will close and the tree is not wedged into the bin.

Real Christmas trees can also be taken to the following locations from 3 January until 18 January:

  • Pollok Park, Burrell Car Park
  • Alexandra Park, off Alexandra Parade, car park next to the golf course
  • Kelvingrove Park, Kelvin Way, grass area opposite the bandstand

The trees collected in the brown bins or taken to the recycling centres are sent for composting to our re-processing partners and the trees taken to the parks are chipped and shredded on site for use within the parks.  Chippings will be available for the public to take free of charge from Pollok Park. Both disposal routes help to divert waste from landfill and assist residents achieve a greener Christmas.


Real Christmas trees will be collected from Monday 8 January 2018.  Please leave trees at the kerbside by 8am on Monday. We cannot collect trees from gardens or bin stores.  They will be collected anytime before 3pm on Friday 12 January. If your tree has not been collected by this time, please let us know.

West Lothian

Christmas trees can be placed in your brown bin for collection on your usual date after collection resumes 16 January. If possible, please make sure to cut trees so they’ll be able to fit into your brown bin. However, if trees are unable to fit due to other recycling, the tree can be cut into a manageable length and be placed kerbside beside your brown bin.

And finally…

Folk in St Andrews can get help the rangers from Fife Coast and Countryside Trust, using Christmas Trees.

Rangers Ranald and Bob are inviting members of the public to help them use now-discarded Christmas trees in order to stabilise the sand dunes at West Sands.  More details about the event on Saturday 13th January, and registration can be found on their website.

And in Edinburgh, local media reported on a fantastic local tradition that has started up in Portobello.

If you’re interested in giving your Christmas tree a final farewell, last year, Christmas trees lined the sand beach of Portobello in a way that intrigued many. A lot of people were wondering why the trees were there, until a bonfire started.  Residents of Portobello disposed of their trees near the shoreline and had a final “funeral” for their Christmas tree.

Last year, the funeral party was organised by Carolina Duczek and other fellow residents who wanted to keep the tradition alive and invited others to participate. Locals were invited to leave their trees outside from where local kids brought them to the beach, stood up in the sand and here, a massive bonfire started and the Christmas season was officially over in Portobello.

Typically, the tradition happens on the first Saturday in January – so if you’d like to participate check the local media and consider heading along to Portobello beach.

Posted in Bethany, Edinburgh, Environment, Fife, Glasgow & Paisley, Media coverage, Recycling, Trees.
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