Holiday Collection & Trees

Holiday Schedule

Summary of Holiday Collection Reminders for Christmas Day and New Year's Day

Collection occurs on all holidays except Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. If your collection day falls on or after the holiday, collection will occur one day later that week. For example, for the Thanksgiving holiday, Thursday collection would be made on Friday, and Friday collection on Saturday. Use the Collection Calendar Widget to see the schedule for your home and set reminders.  Also visit the Publications page to see flyers about holiday schedules. 

On Call Plus Clean Up appointments and cart (toter) exchanges will be suspended during the holiday tree recycling period (below). Typically, no On Call Plus appointments occur between December 26th and the third Friday (full week) in January because of holiday tree collection, but see the paragraph below about tree recycling..

As an alternative, to an On Call Plus clean up appointment, residents may call Recology and request a Voucher to the SMaRT Station to dispose of household items during this time. On Call Plus appointments expire on December 31st each year and are not transferrable to the next year; however, a Voucher issued in December may be used in the following January. Visit Clean Up Programs and Dump Voucher for more information.

Holiday Tree Recycling

Holiday trees will be collected at no charge on your compost day after December 25th until the third Friday in January.  If your tree was set out properly (see below) and is not collected, please contact Recology Mountain View at (650) 967-3034 or email  

Set Out Instructions

Compost carts (formerly called yard trimmings carts) are collected weekly on the same day as garbage.  For collection efficiency, please cut up small holiday trees so they fit easily into the compost carts.  Large trees should be cut into 5 feet pieces and placed in the street gutter next to your driveway so they can be easily seen by drivers (and not missed because they were next to hedges or bushes). Green and flocked trees with wood stands are accepted, but please no tinsel, decorations, or metal or plastic stands. 

After the third Friday in January, residents may only recycle trees (cut up) in the compost cart or use a free On Call Plus appointment or attach an extra garbage tag.

Apartment managers and businesses may arrange for on-site tree collection services by calling Recology Mountain View at (650) 967-3034. 

Extra Holiday Recycling for Homes (split-carts)

Extra recycling will be collected on your recycling day at no charge and is available year-round.

If you have more recycling than will fit in your home's "split" recycling cart, use paper grocery bags or boxes for extra recycling. Do not use plastic garbage bags.  Place mixed paper, newspaper and small pieces of cardboard together in one paper bag next to cart. Place bottles and cans in another paper bag next to cart. In the event of rain, please double-bag recycling.

Flatten and lean larger cardboard pieces (no larger than 3’ x 3’) against the recycling cart. Be sure to bundle large amounts of cardboard with string for faster collection.

Extra Holiday Garbage

Sometimes the holidays bring more waste than can be recycled or composted. If you occasionally have extra garbage that will not fit in your garbage cart, purchase an extra garbage sticker. Attach extra garbage stickers to plastic garbage bags and place next to cart so the sticker is visible to the driver. Please do not put bags in old garbage cans.

Stickers may be purchased from any local Nob Hill or Safeway stores, City Hall Finance Department or at the Mountain View Recycling Center, 935 Terra Bella Avenue, Mountain View. One sticker is needed per 32-gallon plastic bag to be collected.

Recycle Old Holiday Lights

Recycle broken or burned-out holiday lights by using one of take-back services:

  • SMaRT Station, 301 Carl Road, Sunnyvale, (408-752-8530). Strands of lights that have seen their last holiday, whether broken or working, can be dropped off for recycling at the SMaRT Station Recycling Center, located at 301 Carl Road, Sunnyvale, open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, except Christmas and New Year's Days. Located in the Buy-Back & Drop Off Center, put lights in the large U-waste (universal waste) collection container labeled "Holiday Light Recycling" and "Residents Only." There are no restrictions on the numbers of strands allowed for drop off by residents at this time.
  • Orchard Supply, 2555 Charleston Road, Mountain View, (650-691-2000).  Recycle old tree lights, fluorescent bulbs and tubes, and household batteries.
  • Christmas Light Source Recycling Program, 4313 Elmwood Drive, Benbrook, TX 76116. The bulbs will be recycled (not incinerated), and proceeds will be used to purchase books for the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation in their area. You’ll also get a coupon to save 10 percent on a future order of replacement bulbs.
  • Batteries & Lamps Recycling (curbside or drop off)

Contact Recology

For more information, call Recology Mountain View at (650) 967-3034 or email  Hours:  Monday through Friday, from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. except for collection holidays listed above and other legal holidays.