Recycle that tree!
If, unlike us, you don't procrastinate, you're already planning for the disposal of your Christmas tree. Maybe you already booked the full-service recycling disposal from the aptly-named California Christmas Tree Recycling. For a fee, they'll come to your house, drain the stand, remove the tree, vacuum the dropped needles and then take your holiday decor off to become mulch for more trees. For less dough, they'll grab it from your curb and make sure it ends up as mulch, not landfill. They'll pick up from Santa Monica to Beverly Hills to Koreatown (sorry, Silverlake).
In the City of LA, you can chop your tree up and dump it in your green bin to make sure it gets recycled. If that's not feasible, you can take your tree to one of several drop-off points in the city during weekends in January (7th/8th and 14th/15th). But you'll have to vacuum your own car. And the city doesn't want your flocked tree.
If you live in an unincorporated part of LA County (like Altadena, Marina Del Rey or La Crescenta) you've got Christmas tree disposal rules. Incorporated cities -- which stretch from Pomona to Torrance -- have their own special guidelines: flocked yes, flocked no, lengths shorter than 6 feet, or 10 feet, or 8 feet. In Claremont, your tree must be 3 feet away from your other garbage and recycling. You get the idea; check for what applies to you.
If all that is starting to make your head spin, the California Christmas Tree Recycling folks do their thing until February 2. So you can enjoy your tree for a while yet before having to decide. Like us.
Photo by Robbie Sproule