Image of young lady utting cans in a recycle bin

Holiday Recycling

What to do with all that wrapping paper after the holidays? The city of Gaithersburg encourages curbside residential recyclers to get a green start on the New Year by recycling as much as possible. Even your tree can go out by the curb – minus the decorations.

Wrapping paper and all those extra glass and plastic containers are recyclable, and don’t even need to be separated – they can all go in bins or carts thanks to the city’s single stream recycling program.

Disposable batteries are no longer considered hazardous and may be placed in regular household trash.

Rechargeable batteries, computers and other electronic devices and equipment should be taken to the Solid Waste Transfer Station’s recycling drop-off area in Derwood.

Mobile phones are equipped with a special chip that allows calls to 911 or #77 (on state highways), allowing phones to be useful even after service has been disconnected. National carriers have mobile phone recycling take-back plans in place, accepting unwanted mobile phones at any of their retail locations nationwide. Visit a participating retailer for more information.

Old appliances and television sets may be placed at the curb on the first regular recycling day of each month, to be picked up and recycled through the city’s bulk pickup service.

The city of Gaithersburg’s recycling contractor will pick up holiday trees on regular recycling days under the following conditions:

  • Put trees curbside next to green recycling containers on regular recycling days
  • Trees must be in their natural state
  • Remove all decorations, including tinsel and angel hair
  • Be sure there is no metal attached to the tree
  • Do not wrap trees in plastic
  • Artificial trees will not be recycled
  • Trees with root balls will not be recycled
  • Trees will only be picked up from residences. Do not take the trees to other sites such as schools or public buildings.

There is no deadline – trees and other branches, clippings and yard debris are picked up on your regular recycling day throughout the year.

For a full description of Gaithersburg’s recycling program please visit the city website at or call the Department of Public Works at 301-258-6370.


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