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Trust us, recycling your Christmas tree after you've undecked your halls will be a whole lot easier than returning that gaudy applique sweater from Cousin Janine or swallowing another morsel of your sister's rock-hard fruitcake.

The worst fate for your Tannenbaum is perpetuity in a landfill, where decomposition is glacially slow due to the oxygen-poor environment. Try "treecycling" your castoff conifer, instead: Many municipalities offer curbside pickup for the more than 30 million Christmas trees that Americans unload every year, grinding the evergreens into aromatic mulch and compost for landscape and garden use.

In addition, the National Christmas Tree Association has partnered with Earth911.org to list almost 4,000 drop-off centers and pickup programs, searchable by city and state.

Difficulty level: Easy