SANTA CLARITA – Planting your brittle Christmas tree on the curb will help new trees to sprout, though not in the cement below. Trash haulers will collect the trees during their regular rounds through Jan. 14 and chip them into mulch or compost rather than dumping the tired tannenbaums in landfills. “Last year, we pretty much diverted more than 265 tons of Christmas trees,” said Ben Lucha, the city’s environmental projects development coordinator. The city is hoping the program is a big hit again this year. The resulting mulch is spread as a protective ground cover around trees and in flower beds, and compost provides nutrients in farming. Lucha said the recycled product likely will be exported outside the city. The city does, however, recycle clippings from the landscaped medians and parks. Judy O’Rourke, (661) 257-5255 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake Blue Barrel Disposal-Waste Management and Consolidated Disposal Services have asked customers to discard unadorned and unflocked trees – minus the stand – along with their everyday trash. The service is free. Lucha said people tend to generate more trash during the holiday season than at any other time and he encourages recycling whenever possible. “Reuse gift wrappings. Instead of wrapping paper for a kid, get their favorite comic strip, wrap it in that,” he said. “When people stop, and start using their imagination to find creative ways to give gifts, they can surprise themselves and find ways to reduce waste at the same time.” Using rechargeable batteries and shutting off holiday lights before turning in at night also can conserve funds and resources. For more conservation tips, call the city’s Environmental Services division at (661) 286-4098.