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Highland County Recycling shares tips on recycling after the holidays

Highland County Recycling-
Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, Ohioans and their fellow Americans traditionally put 25 percent more trash at their curbs – mostly wrapping paper, ribbons, party decorations and mail-order catalogues – all by-products of the holiday season.    
According to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Americans generate about 5,000,000 tons of trash during the week following Christmas alone.
“Residents, please be mindful that NOT everything can be recycled,” states Dori Bishop from the Highland County Recycling office.  “We do not have a market for bows and decorations, and these items should NOT be placed in the recycling drop-off containers.  They have a great purpose in re-use, but they cannot be recycled.”
Highland Recycling offers these tips for lightening the trash collector’s load in coming weeks: 
Reuse bows, gift bags and boxes.  Cheery holiday gift bags can be used over and over again if folded and stored from season to season.  The same applies to gift boxes.
Reuse large pieces of wrapping paper for smaller gifts next year.
Reuse Christmas cards next year.  Cut the fronts off this year’s Christmas cards to reuse as holiday postcards next year.  Postcards take up less room in mailbags and are far less expensive to mail.  Also, cut the fronts from this year’s cards to decorate a plain gift bag or use in scrapbooks. 
Remove your name from unwanted catalog lists.   The average American home receives more than 200 mail order catalogs each year.  Most of these catalogues arrive just before the holidays.  Call the toll-fee number listed in the catalogs to ask that your name be removed from mailing lists.  
Live-cut Christmas trees do not have to stop giving after the holidays have passed.  Evergreen trees can be recycled as mulch and compost and can be reused in several ways that benefit Ohio’s environment and wildlife.  Chipped and shredded, Christmas trees can be used as landscape mulch which can help reduce weeds and retain moisture, and as compost to return nutrients to the soil.  
Highland County residents have the following alternatives available to them.  Fresh-cut evergreen trees (with all tinsel, ornaments, decorations and bags removed) may be taken to Cundiff’s Farm Market, 8064 State Route 124, Hillsboro (call 393-1411 for hours).  Residents may also take their cut trees to the designated yard waste site at Liberty Park (near YMCA), Hillsboro.   
Live-cut trees can be used for wildlife as: 
Aquatic habitat:  submerge the tree in a farm pond with a weight, such as a cinder block, so that it won’t float to the surface.  This provides an excellent refuge and feeding area for fish.
Shelter:  place your tree in the corner of the yard where wildlife can use it as protection against winter’s harsh elements.  Property owners with larger tracts of land will find multiple trees make for the most successful habitats.
Whether you plan to use your old Christmas tree outdoors or plan to have it chipped and shredded, please remember to remove all trimmings such as tinsel, ornaments and garlands and seek permission before discarding trees on public land, private land or in ponds. 
During the holidays, you will also find that your household recycling container will fill up quickly. Our residential drop-off sites take the following materials:  plastic bottles, jars and jugs; glass bottles, jars and jugs; aluminum beverage cans; steel food cans; clean paper (such as newspapers, magazines, telephone books, catalogs, junk mail); and cardboard.  Please flatten ALL cardboard boxes.  NO pizza boxes, NO paper plates, NO paper cups, NO paper napkins and NO styrofoam.  These items must go with your normal trash for the landfill. 
To receive a free copy of the Recycling Resources brochure that lists commercial recyclers for additional materials, you may call Highland County Recycling at 393-4080 and leave your name and address, or send an email request to and provide a mailing address.
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