Throwing out your holiday trash: What is recyclable and what goes in the garbage

SPOKANE, Wash. — The holidays are now over and it’s time to dump all that holiday trash if you haven’t already.

But you want to make sure you dispose of everything in the right place.

The two weeks after Christmas are some of the busiest weeks of the year at Spokane’s Waste Energy Facility.

Wrapping paper, boxes and other Christmas trash are being thrown away across the county, but not all of it should actually be ‘thrown away’.

Some items are recyclable and it’s important to know which ones.

What can be recycled and what goes in the trash

Copyright 4 News Now

Most wrapping paper can be recycled. So can cardboard and paper boxes – as long as there’s no plastic coating on them.

It’s foil wrapping paper, tissue paper and metallic bows and ribbons that go in the trash.

“We always see a bump in trash the week or two weeks after Christmas so we’ll get a lot of. As people get new things, they’re throwing the old things out or a lot of that wrapping,” said Education Coordinator for Spokane’s Solid Waste Management Dept. Kris Major.

To ease the burden on waste disposal this time of year, you are encouraged to use materials that can be used again.

“We do encourage people to look at something to see if there is another use, if it can be re-used,” said Major. “Maybe it can be donated to a second hand store or something or find someone in need that could use it.”

And while you’re dumping your holiday trash this week, you can also get your Christmas trees picked up curbside.

RELATED: City of Spokane to offer Christmas Tree curbside pickup at no cost

Residents are asked to remove any decorations and place their trees at least three feet away from the bins on their regular garbage pickup days.

The City of Spokane will accept trees that are up to six feet tall and if your tree is taller, cut it in half.

The trunk also must be three inches or less in diameter.

If you don’t live within the city limits, you can take your tree to a Spokane County transfer station, but you’ll need to pay a fee.

  • Waste-to-Energy Facility, 2900 S. Geiger Blvd. Open 7: 30 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.
  • Spokane Valley Transfer Station, 3941 N. Sullivan Road. Open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
  • North County Transfer Station, 22123 Elk-Chattaroy Road. Open 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

In Kootenai County, you can take your Christmas tree to one of these transfer stations which are open from 8 a.m. to 4:55 p.m. daily:

  • Ramsey Transfer Station, 3330 N. Ramsey Road, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83815
  • Prairie Transfer Station, 15580 W. Prairie Avenue, Post Falls, ID 83854
  • Fighting Creek Landfill, 22089 S. Highway 95, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83814

The City of Post Falls is also doing a curbside tree pick-up service on Saturday, Jan. 16.

According to a post on its Facebook page, trees must have all of the decorations removed and be cut into bundled 4-foot lengths or less, and placed curbside before 6 a.m.

This special pick-up service is for trees only, garbage will not be collected during this time, and call-backs for additional pick-ups cannot be accommodated.