Drop off used Christmas trees to MDC this holiday season

News from the region
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COLUMBIA, Mo. — The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) invites Missourians to drop off their live Christmas trees to be used for habitat improvement around central Missouri. MDC will accept trees at the following locations from Dec. 26, 2023 through Jan. 31, 2024:

  • MDC’s Central Regional Office at 3500 E. Gans Road in Columbia
  • Washington Park near Vivion Field in Jefferson City
  • Proctor Park in California

To donate your tree (real trees only), please remove all decorations and bring the tree to the drop-off site of your choosing. Signage at this location will direct donors to the proper drop-off spot.

MDC fisheries staff collect discarded natural trees to submerge in area lakes and ponds. Once submerged, these trees offer habitat for a variety of native fish species. “Submerged Christmas trees make great underwater cover for smaller fish and aquatic invertebrates,” said MDC Fisheries Biologist 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.”

Trees may also be dropped off at city mulch sites in Columbia or may simply be placed under bird feeders in your backyard to provide cover for birds and other wildlife. For questions about Christmas tree donation, please call (573) 815-7900.