Where to take your Christmas tree to be recycled, for free, in Houston – 18 locations open until January 8, 2013

Now that Christmas is over, what do you do with your live Christmas tree?  Once all the lights and decorations are removed, the tree can be dropped off at 1 of 18 free recycling locations.

The Solid Waste Management Department  is encouraging residents to recycle their Christmas trees, saving landfill space and disposal costs.  The program runs from now until January 8th, 2013. (Closed on January 1, 2013.)

Residents with City of Houston collection may also place their tree curbside on their scheduled tree waste day and it will be recycled. Trees that are collected for recycling will be ground into mulch that is available in bulk directly from Living Earth or available in bags at Houston retailers.

For a list of drop off locations, go HERE.  To find your tree waste day, go HERE.


Mayor Annise Parker on Colbert Report – Check Out the Video

Mayor Annise Parker was on Colbert Report last night. Check out the video HERE.   The video reminds me why I love Houston… It’s affordable, it’s has a good quality of life, there is a lot to do, there are lots of jobs and the people are real.

Hurricane Season Started June 1 – Get your Family Ready!

Hurricane Season started June 1 and runs through November 30.

Do you remember Ike in 2008? Houses and grocery stores were without power for weeks. So you are prepared for another storm, the City of Houston recommends Houstonians get ready now. From their website:

  • Build a Kit – Have a supply kit with enough supplies to last your family for 5 – 7 days; the kit should include food, medications, water and other basic necessities
  • Make a Plan – Have an emergency plan for your family
  • Be Informed – Have a NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) Weather Alert radio or a hand-crank or battery-powered radio
  • Know Your Neighbor – Neighbors can be a great source of help before and after a disaster

Also, following Rita and Ike, the City of Houston and Rice University developed the Storm Risk Calculator to help Houstonians.  Go HERE to check it out.

Ashby High Rise – Letter from Mayor Annise Parker – City of Houston Settles with Developers – Community meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, March 12, 2012


Have you been following the Ashby High Rise dispute for the last several years? The following letter was sent out by Mayor Annise Parker to the CitizensNet email list. To join this list, go HERE.  To see the full article, go HERE.  In short, the project is moving forward…


Update on the Ashby High-Rise Project

Community Meeting Monday, March 12, 2012

Dear Houstonians,

This letter will provide an update on the City’s position regarding the Ashby High-Rise Project. I want to begin by reiterating that since 2007 I have thought this to be the wrong project in the wrong place. My position has not changed. Unfortunately, the City has no legal basis for stopping it. Even success in the courtroom in the City’s litigation against developers, Maryland Manor Associates and Buckhead Investments, Inc. would not halt the project, since the developers would still be able to proceed with their current permit application, which mirrors that which the City was compelled to approve in 2009. Therefore, I am accepting the advice of City legal counsel and recommending settlement of the lawsuit. I believe this is the best option for the City and the neighborhood because it will ensure some control over how the project proceeds. It will also eliminate any possibility that the developers can build a project as large as that sought in 2007, or that the City may be subject to damages for its failure to approve that permit application, either of which can happen if the City loses the current litigation.

Under the terms of the settlement, the City will approve and permit a mixed-use development that generates 115 afternoon/evening trips per peak hour and does not exceed a total of 21 stories in height, excluding the roof, which is smaller than the previously approved project. One such qualifying plan consists of 228 residential high-rise units, 10,075 square feet of quality restaurant use and four residential town homes. In addition, the project will incorporate a pedestrian plaza as envisioned in the foundation permit plan originally filed in 2007, which enhances the appearance of the project fronting Bissonnet…

A community meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, March 12, 2012, at Congregation Emanu El, 1500 Sunset Boulevard, Houston 77005 in order to address this matter further. If you have questions, email City Attorney David Feldman at david.feldman@houstontx.gov.

Read the entire article HERE.


How do you find your City of Houston Trash, Recycle and Heavy Trash Days? Plus City of Houston Official Holidays.

Updated July 2016

Friends – This post was originally published in 2012 because trash days and heavy trash days can be hard to find on the city’s website.  This website is NOT a city website and is meant to help Houstonians.  It is NOT the official resource.

If you are having trouble finding your trash days, leave a kind comment and I can try to help.  If you want the official answer on trash days, call 311.

Wondering where to find your City of Houston Trash, Recycle and Heavy Trash Days? Go HERE and look for your zip code.  For the holiday trash pick up schedule, go HERE.

What is your heavy trash/junk trash, tree waste day?  As for November 2015, Tree Waste is collected during ODD numbered months and Junk Waste is collected during EVEN numbered months.  Tree Waste months are January, March, May, July, September, and November.  Junk Waste months are February, April, June, August, October and December.

The week they are collected during that month depends on your zip code.  This is where the search gets a little tricky.

  1. Go HERE to the “My City Houston Map Viewer”
  2. Accept and use the Application
  3. Select the thumb tack on the right side of the screen
  4. Type in your address and submit
  5. Press “Solid Waste Schedules” button to view the schedule date.  It will say something like “1st Wednesday”… which is the 1st Wednesday during a Junk Waste month.

Did the garbage truck miss your block or your house? Did they leave a huge mess? Call 311 and they can send a truck back to your street.

Thanksgiving Holiday Parade 2011 – Thursday, November 24 at 9 a.m.‏ – Downtown Houston


From the City of Houston:

Join Mayor Annise Parker on Thursday, November 24, 2011 at 9 a.m. as approximately 400,000 spectators line the streets of downtown Houston to watch the annual parade showcasing colorful, animated floats, gigantic balloons, as well as performances by celebrity guests, marching bands, cheerleaders, dance groups and more.

The event, co-sponsored by the City of Houston, is free to the public with viewing available anywhere along the parade route outside of the TV zone. A limited number of reserved bleacher seats in the TV zone are available for purchase.

For more details, including the parade route, go HERE.

Rain Barrel / Compost Bin Sale


This week I posted about the City of Houston & Urban Harvest hosted Rain Barrel/Compost Bin sale at Minute Made Park. We went today and picked up a rain barrel.  The turn out was great and we were lucky enough to get one at 10:30.  Did you get one?

City of Houston – Rain Barrel/Compost Bin One Day Sale, Food Day Houston and Permanent Electronic Recycling


From the City of Houston: Rain Barrel/Compost Bin One Day Sale, Food Day Houston and Permanent Electronic Recycling

Rain Barrel/Compost Bin One Day Sale

On Saturday, October 22, 2011, from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Houstonians can buy rain barrels for $55 (a $120 value) and compost machines for $45 (a $100 value) on a first come, first served basis at Minute Maid Park, Parking Lot “C” corner of Texas and St. Emanuel, Houston 77003. Parking is free.

Rain barrels are used to collect and contain groundwater from rooftops, which can be used for watering gardens and lawns. Rainwater conserves water, improves air quality and saves money. Compost bins are used to store and assist the decomposition of various materials to be used to fertilize garden soil. Composting enriches soil, deters erosion and contaminated soil, prevents pollution and saves money.



Food Day Houston, Wednesday, October 26, 2011, will showcase local healthy, sustainable food initiatives in a fun and educational celebration at the City Hall Farmers Market, just outside of City Hall, 901 Bagby, Houston 77002.

At 11 a.m., Recipe for Success Foundation will host a Local Food Throwdown featuring celebrity chefs from the Recipe for Success Chefs Advisory Board.

At noon, Urban Harvest will host a Lunch-In, a large community lunch. Bring your food to the Reflection Pond to participate or buy your lunch at the Farmers Market from one of the 35 local vendors who participate weekly at the market. The event will take place rain or shine.

At 1 p.m., the City of Houston will host a Food Day Town Hall meeting just below City Hall steps, featuring a panel discussion focused on inspiring ideas and solutions to advance the local food movement.


Permanent Electronic Recycling

The City of Houston’s Solid Waste Management Department and CompuCycle have partnered to provide a permanent electronics recycling drop-off site for Houstonians to recycle their electronics responsibly at the CompuCycle building located at 7700 Kempwood, Houston, 77055. The partnership also provides monthly one-day collection events on Saturdays at three neighborhood City of Houston recycling centers.

Recycling electronics keeps potentially harmful materials, such as mercury, cadmium, lead and cathode ray tubes out of the waste stream and the environment.

Permanent drop-off site:

The permanent location is 7700 Kempwood, Houston 77055 in the Spring Branch area. It is open Monday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Once a month drop-off sites:

The monthly Saturday electronics recycling will be held 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the:

. Kingwood Metro Transit Center (1st Saturday of the month)

3210 West Lake Houston Parkway, Houston 77339

. Ellington/Clear Lake Neighborhood Recycling Center (2nd Saturday of the month), Highway 3 @ Brantley Road, Houston 77037

. Center Street Recycling Center (3rd Saturday of the month) 3602 Center Street, Houston 77007

Electronic Items accepted:

Personal computers, servers, keyboards, mice, laptops, game consoles, monitors, small kitchen appliances, memory chips, hubs and routers, printers, copiers, scanners, fax machines, projectors, rechargeable batteries, cable boxes, car batteries, telephones, cell phones, PDAs (personal digital assistants), tape drives, hard drives, cords, cables and cameras.

In addition to electronics recycling, all four locations are drop-off sites for common household recyclables such as paper, plastics, aluminum and glass.


Houston Parking Meters – What to do in case of paper jam


Earlier this week I mentioned that we had a parking meter issue in downtown Houston while visiting the Police Museum. In short, we parked, went to the meter, paid with credit card, and then had no receipt print out (which is needed to display on the dashboard so you are not ticketed).

I emailed the city on Tuesday 10/11/11 and was pleasantly surprised when I got a response today.


According to the Parking Management Department, the meter states to call 311 to report any service issues. The 311 representative will provide a unique number for you to place on the dashboard and notify the service department. At this time, technology is not available for the meter not to accept payment if there is a paper jam.

They also told me that if I had gone to another meter and paid a second time to provide the last four digits of my credit card, credit card type, and mailing address.  Once the payment is verified a courtesy pass would be mailed for the inconvenience.

So now I know what to do… and I’m impressed with the quick response.

Ever Called 311? For Houston Service Requests, Online Tool is Now Available


Have you ever called 311 to request a service from the city? We’ve called it to report water leaks and other issues.  Now there is an online tool for filing and tracking the requests.  I’m excited to see how well it works.

From the city:
The City of Houston has launched a redesigned Houston 311 Help & Info WEBSITE. The new customer friendly website is easy to use. Users can place more than 100 Service Requests online, and more are being added every day. Additional information is just a click away. While citizens may still call Houston 311 Help & Info, submitting requests online is much faster and can be done anytime — day or night, weekday or weekend.

Houston311.org visitors will find City services organized by functional area. The site features an index of City services, conveniently located on the left-hand side of the home page, where service information can be located under several logical headings. For example, a site visitor that would like to learn more about dog parks could search the index entries under “A” for animals, “D” for dogs, or “P” for parks.

Houston residents can familiarize themselves with the new houston311.org by clicking on “How to Use This Site” link on the left-hand side of the home page. For more information, email 311@houstontx.gov.