Give your old Christmas tree a second life. (Nature Conservancy of Canada photo)

Give your old Christmas tree a second life. (Nature Conservancy of Canada photo)

How to recycle your trees in the South Okanagan and Similkameen after the holidays

Communities throughout region have collection and composting services available

Holiday trees can be recycled at locations throughout the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen after the festive season.

Several communities in the regional district have tree collection or drop-off programs for clean, natural trees.

Penticton Fire Fighters Local 1399 will pick up Christmas trees by donation from Dec. 27 to Jan 18. All donations received will go to the B.C. Professional Fire Fighters Burn Fund and Muscular Dystrophy charities.

Penticton and West Bench residents can call 250-490-2315 to register for collection. Clean, natural trees can also be dropped off at Fire Hall #2, 285 Dawson Ave., from Dec. 26 to Jan. 31.

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Summerland residents can call the fire hall at 250-404-4087 or e-mail to request collection of trees. Summerland Secondary School students will collect trees by donation Sunday, Jan. 3, and Sunday, Jan. 10, from 9 to 10 a.m. Donations will go to the Summerland Secondary School Dry Grad.

The town of Oliver will have a bin for tree drop-off on Station Street just north of Bank Avenue until Jan. 8. This tree drop-off is sponsored by EZ Bins.

Osoyoos residents can drop off trees adjacent to the washroom at Kinsmen Park (on the boulevard) or at the northwest corner of the parking lot below the Sun Bowl Arena sign until Monday, Jan. 11. For information, please call 250-495-6213 or email

When open, landfills within the regional district will accept up to 500 kilograms of yard waste free of charge, including clean, natural trees.

The trees will be chipped and used as animal bedding or compost.

Burning of holiday trees is discouraged as it creates strong smoke due to the moisture in the wood and needles. Fine particulates from smoke have been linked to respiratory and heart disease.

Trees for collection or dropped off as yard waste must be free of all ornaments, tinsel, fake snow and other decorations.

Holiday lights are fully recyclable in British Columbia. Light strings, bulbs and fixtures can be dropped off at participating depots around the regional district. To learn more, visit

Christmas treeOkanagan-Similkameen Regional District