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Coho-Ho!

Give your Christmas tree new life after the holidays

Watershed Councils along the north Oregon coast are once again teaming with Trout Unlimited, local Boy Scout Troop 642, CARTM, and the North Coast Land Conservancy in an effort to utilize the season’s surplus and old Christmas trees, wreaths, and garlands.

The Necanicum Watershed Council teams up with Trout Unlimited, and local Seaside Boy Scout Troop 642, in a fundraiser to serve multiple purposes: the Boy Scouts earn money for Summer Camp, TU raises money for operations, and collected Christmas trees become salmon habitat.

Once collected, local groups such as the Necanicum Watershed Council, the Lower Nehalem Watershed Council, and Trout Unlimited will place the trees in appropriate locations and let nature do its thing. Within a few days of being placed in the water, the needles and branches become covered with algae, which attract aquatic insects, and ultimately feeds salmon. The trees also provide critical cover from predators and can last around five years. Not only are the trees not wasting space in a landfill, but they provide an essential functions within our coastal ecosystem when placed appropriately.

There are several drop off locations, and even a pick-up option for those who live in south Clatsop County. Regardless of where you donate your tree, all Christmas trees, wreaths, and garlands must be free of ornaments, decorations, plastic, tinsel, and cannot be flocked.

CANNON BEACH: Trees can be dropped off at the Columbia Bank branch in Cannon Beach (107 Sunset Blvd, Cannon Beach, OR 97110) on January 2nd and 3rd from 9 am until 4 pm with a suggested donation of $5 per tree. Scouts from Boy Scout troop 642 will be on hand each day and funds raised help support their summer camps.

SEASIDE: Boy Scout troop 642 will also be at the Seaside Outlet Mall (1111 N Roosevelt Dr, Seaside, OR 97138) during the same time, January 2nd and 3rd from 9 am until 4 pm each day, collecting trees. Again, the suggested donation is $5 per tree dropped off and funds raised help support their summer camps.

In addition to these two Clatsop County locations, trees can also be scheduled for a pick up from January 2nd – Jan 10th. To arrange a tree pick up (in South Clatsop County from Cannon Beach through Warrenton) please call 503-717-9563. The suggested donation for a pick-up is $8.

NEHALEM: Trees can also be dropped off at CARTM (34995 Necarney City Rd, Manzanita, OR 97130) for no charge to the public between New Years and January 15th. CARTM’s winter hours are Thursday – Sunday 10 am – 4 pm and they will be closed New Year’s Day.

ASTORIA & WARRENTON: Lewis and Clark National Historical Park and North Coast Watershed Association are hosting a drop site at The Colewort Creek Restoration Site in Lewis and Clark National Historical Park. Trees can be dropped anytime between December 26 and January 16. Look for signs for the drop site on the west side of Fort Clatsop Road between the Visitor Center and Netul Landing. You can also join in the “Cocoa and Coho” work party to help place trees on January 16 from 1-4pm. Prepare to get muddy. Hot chocolate and gloves will be provided.

PORTLAND-METRO: The Tualatin Valley and Clackamas chapters of Trout Unlimited will be collecting trees at the Royal Treatment Fly Shop (21570 Willamette Dr, West Linn, OR 97068) and Northwest Fly Fishing Outfitters (10910 NE Halsey St, Portland, OR 97220) Saturday, January 2nd and Saturday, January 9th, from 9 am to 4 pm. There is a suggested donation of $10 to help cover the cost of transportation of the trees.

Click here for answers to frequently asked questions!

We’ve made the news! Check out these local and NATIONAL mentions:

Oregonian: Sport fishers to collect Christmas trees in West Linn to improve salmon spawning habitat, Christmas trees are the ultimate gift for fish

KOIN 6 News: Christmas trees sprout life as habitat

Field and Stream Hero for a Day: Christmas Trees for Coho Project

Sustainability in Action: Christmas Trees Provide Habitat for Coho Salmon

Huffington Post: Christmas Tree Recycling In Portland Becomes Lucrative Fundraising Activity For Nonprofit Groups

OPB’s Ecotrope: Conservation Group Turns Christmas Trees Into Salmon Habitat, Turning Christmas Trees Into Salmon Habitat, Sinking Christmas Trees Into Salmon Habitat, In Portland: Give your Christmas tree to salmon, How to turn your Christmas tree into salmon habitat

KGW News Channel 8: Christmas trees turned into salmon habitat