Several options for getting rid of Christmas trees in mid-Missouri
COLUMBIA - Now that Christmas is over, fire safety officials are warning of the fire risk posed by dried out Christmas trees.
The Boone County Fire Protection District tweeted a warning on Saturday, saying dry trees are dangerous and can catch on fire easily.
There are several options for getting rid of used trees.
In Jefferson City, the Parks Department is collecting trees in Washington Park until the end of January. Trees can't be flocked, and all decorations have to be removed.
In Columbia, trees without decorations can be dropped off at the Capen Park and Parkside mulch sites. The city will turn these trees into mulch and use them for compost.
Another option in Columbia is putting the tree out with normal trash on a regularly scheduled pickup day. These trees can still be decorated, and they will go directly to the landfill.
The Department of Conservation is also collecting trees. The Central Regional Office in Columbia will put the trees in lakes and ponds throughout mid-Missouri so fish can use them as habitats.
A biologist with the department said Christmas trees add a lot to underwater ecosystems in a press release.
"Submerged Christmas trees make great underwater cover for smaller fish and aquatic invertebrates," said Brian McKeage. "Larger fish then congregate around these structures to prey on fish and other food sources, so these trees become hotspots for fish and for anglers."
The National Fire Protection Association warns to not put dry trees against your house, as that also poses a fire risk.