Christmas/ New Year's clean up guide

The Christmas and New Year’s period are a fun and festive time of year. So when January rolls around, many of us want minimal fuss when disposing of our Christmas Trees, wrapping, packaging, etc.

Use our handy recycling and disposal guide to assist you with this holiday season’s waste:

Christmas trees (artificial)

Artificial Christmas trees cannot be recycled, but there are many ways we can reuse them if they are still in good shape: 

Christmas trees (real)

Real Christmas trees can be picked-up in the special kerb-side pick-up, click here to find out more.

ALL decorations, lights, tinsel, nails, stands, tree bags MUST be removed.

Christmas tree lights (and other electrical items)

These popular Christmas tree decorations can be disposed of in the General waste (red-lid).

If they are still in good condition they can be taken to the Salvage and Save Shop at the hard waste- Resource Recovery Centre, or the e-waste can be dropped off FREE at the transfer station. 

Christmas Cards

Christmas cards that are 100% paper can go in the recycling bin (yellow-lid), staples do not need to be removed.

If you have received Christmas cards that are not hazardous or recyclable place in the general waste bin (red-lid).

If you are feeling creative you can always turn your cards into new gift tags, cards, or wreaths for next year. Find out more here.

Christmas Crackers/ Bon-Bons

Christmas crackers make a fun addition to Christmas Lunch/Dinner. You can place them in the recycling bin (yellow-lid bin).

Before doing so make sure you remove any decorations including ribbons and toys.


Drink bottles and cans can go in the recycling bin (yellow-lid), remember some cans and bottles have a 10 cent refundable deposit which you can drop off at the Elizabeth or Munno Para Scout Recycling Centre.

Any cardboard cask boxes can go into the recycling bin (yellow-lid) and place the cask bladder in the general waste (red-lid).

*Do not crush cans or bottles.

Christmas/ New Year’s leftover food

Festive food leftovers can go along way with many recipes on the internet to help with tasty turkey and ham leftovers. 

However, for scraps you can put them in the organics bin (green-lid) this includes:

  • Bones- Turkey, Ham, Fish etc.
  • Soiled napkins, tissues, and greasy takeaway boxes.
  • Coffee grounds/ Teabags
  • Salad and fruit leftovers- including vegetable peels.

The organics bin is collected every two weeks, but if the bin gets smelly just throw some grass clippings or leaves to neutralise the smell.

Plastic plates and cutlery

These items can be scraped clean and put into the recycling bin.

Foam plates/trays

Styrofoam cannot be recycled. Rinse clean if necessary and place in the general waste bin (red- lid bin).

Aluminium Trays/ Foil wraps

If the trays/foils are mostly clean and rinsed, they are accepted for recycling (yellow-lid), dispose of lids that are not 100% aluminium and heavily soiled wraps/trays in the general waste (red-lid).

*Foil needs to be in balls of at least 3 inch diameter.


If the ornaments are in good condition consider donating them to an organisation that can use them.

Ornaments that are Glass, clay, treated-wood and plastic place in the general waste bin (red-lid).

Ornaments that are 100% paper can be recycled, If they have been decorated with noodles, photographs, ribbons, and other decorations remove and place those items in the general waste (red-lid).

Party Poppers

Plastic casings go into the general waste bin (red-lid).

Streamers and cardboard disc goes into the organics bin (green-lid).


Tinsel is a beautiful way spruce up your Christmas tree however it is not great for the environment. We recommend reusing your tinsel as long as you can before placing it in the general waste bin (red-lid).

Also remember! The internet is a great source for crafting the old into new items. Why not get the kids involved for a school holiday project?

Toy and gift wrap/packaging

Toys and gift wrap/ packaging can be tricky to dispose since not all parts are recyclable.

Find out below what items go in what bin below:


Toys and gifts come in a combination of cardboard and hard plastic. Separate the cardboard and hard plastic before placing             both in therecycling bin (yellow-lid).

*Remember to flatten boxes to make room in your recycling bin.


Gift bags are great as they are easy to store away and reuse again. If it is damaged the bag can be recycled (yellow-lid)               but any ribbons, handles or decorations will need to be removed and placed in the general waste (red-lid).


Ribbons, ties, cords, and raffia are great to be reused for future presents and crafts.

You can look up some great craft ideas here.

If they cannot be reused, please place them in thegeneral waste (red-lid).

Gift Wrappings

Paper wrapping can either be stored away for reuse or placed in the recycling bin (yellow-lid).

A great idea for the creatives! Mix it up a bit by using newspaper, tea towels or bags for gift wrapping. Re-useable ribbon             also makes a great alternative for sticky tape. You can also give your presents a personal touch by using wrapping made          from Children’s artwork. Find out more about these tips here.

Tissue paper can go into the compost or organics bin (green-lid), make sure to remove any sticky tape and ribbon. 

Foil or plastic wrapping, this includes cellophane can be placed in the general waste bin (red-lid).

Wreaths and table decorations

Unfortunately wreaths and table decorations consist of too many materials, so they are best placed in the general waste (red-lid).


Non-alkaline batteries are banned from landfill and CANNOT be put into any of the kerbside collection bins.

However, batteries can be dropped off at a Playford Library  or ALDI shop.

Great saver idea! Purchase rechargeable batteries and a charger, as they have 32 times LESS impact on the environment than the disposable batteries, after a few uses you can save money as well as energy.  


my waste app pic

Download the My Waste app on GooglePlay for Android or the AppStore for iPhone to keep up to date with your NAWMA news and information.

Info updated from

Post: 12 Bishopstone Road, Davoren Park SA 5113 | Visit: Playford Civic Centre, 10 Playford Boulevard, Elizabeth
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