Holidays in Philly

How to let goats eat your Christmas tree, or recycle it another way in Philly

You don’t have to trash that fir you so carefully decorated after it was chopped down.

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Instagram / @phillygoatproject
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Don’t let your Christmas tree become part of the extra trash sanitation workers have to deal with around the holidays.

If you have a yard (or even a tiny square of land behind your rowhome), small pine limbs and needles make for great mulch.

There’s also plenty of ways to recycle the tree — including letting goats eat it as a snack.

The folks behind the Philly Goat Project partnered with the Philadelphia Streets Department and Parks and Rec to get the trees to their animals this year. Douglas firs are apparently a favorite, but the goats will eat any kind of evergreen, according to WHYY’s PlanPhilly, devouring the whole thing in about 20 minutes.

You can feed their hunger by bringing your tree over with a $20 donation. Choose the express drop-off or the “safari” ride at the Awbury Arboretum, where you can see the caprine beasts enjoying their bounty. Any trees the goats don’t eat will be turned into wood chips for pathways.

Philly Goat Project tree drop-offs are happening at the following times and places:

  • 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 9, at 6336 Ardleigh St.
  • 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 23, at 6336 Ardleigh St.
  • 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 30, at 3850 W. Ford Rd.

If you want to go for more traditional recycling via city services, the Streets Dept. just asks that you make sure all the decorations are off. (Sorry, Christmas balls can’t be recycled.)

Here’s a map of all the drop-off locations.

Anytime between Monday, Jan. 4, and Saturday, Jan. 16, you can drop off your tree at a Sanitation Convenience Center, which are open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday through Saturday. They’re located at:

  • 3033 S. 63rd St.
  • Domino Lane and Umbria Street
  • State Road and Ashburner Street
  • 2601 W. Glenwood Ave.
  • 5100 Grays Ave.
  • 3901 N. Delaware Ave.

In addition, there are 13 Streets Dept. locations that will be accepting trees only on Saturday Jan. 9 and Saturday Jan. 16 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.:

  • 54th Street and Woodbine Avenue
  • Cathedral Road and Ridge Avenue
  • 15th and Bigler streets
  • Broad and Christian streets
  • 4800 Wayne Ave. (Happy Hollow Rec)
  • 7901 Ridgeway St. (Fox Chase Rec)
  • 1400 Cottman Ave. (Jardel Rec)
  • 43rd Street and Powelton Avenye
  • Graver Lane and Seminole Street
  • Corinthian Avenue and Poplar Street
  • Castor Avenue and Foulkrod Street
  • Washington Lane and Ardleigh Street
  • American and Thompson streetrs

Some civic associations also hold annual tree drop-off days, so check in with your local neighborhood group for additional options.

Want some more? Explore other Holidays in Philly stories.

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