Collecting the leaves left behind

Free wood chips available
A City of Grand Rapids yard waste bag encourages people to "waste not." Courtesy photo.

You know all of those leaves that were still in your yard when the unwelcome Halloween blizzard arrived last fall? There’s a convenient solution for that.

The City of Grand Rapids offers paid curbside yard waste collection through the Department of Public Works beginning Monday, April 1, 2024, but you must sign up for it on the City’s website.

Curbside yard waste is collected on the same day as refuse collection through the second Saturday in December, weather permitting. All yard waste needs to be placed at the refuse collection point by 7 a.m.

The City also offers a year-round yard waste drop-off site for those residents who wish to compost yard waste free-of-charge.

The free resident drop-off site, open year-round, is located at 2001 Butterworth St., SW. The hours of operation are Monday – Saturday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Bring ID for proof of residence. People with hydraulic dump-trailers will be required to manually empty the trailer for safety reasons.

This is NOT a public dump for various garbage. Yard waste must be loose or in a paper bag. Plastic bags are not allowed.

The site has free wood chips and 2,000 yards of compost available free of charge. Residents can pick up to one cubic yard of material once per year on a first come basis Saturdays – Memorial Day through July. For more information, call the Department of Public Works at 616.456.3000 or visit the website.

Rules and tips for yard waste pickup

  • Yard Waste Cart – The cart is $27.50 to order. Each time you would like your cart emptied, attach a yellow Yard Waste Tag to the cart. Each tag is $6. City yard waste cart tags, paper bags, and purple bulk tags can be purchased at City Hall, 300 Monroe Ave. NW. They can also be purchased at select local supermarkets and hardware stores.
  • Yard Waste Bulk Tag – Purple yard waste bulk tags are used for bundles of larger twigs or branches and to non-city paper yard waste bags.  Purple yard waste bulk tags cost $2.50 each.
  • All yard waste other than bulk or bundled branches need to be placed in a City yard cart or City yard waste paper bag and be visible for collection.
  • Yard waste bags cannot be overfilled. There is a 30-pound weight limit on the bags.
  • Dirt, stones, and manure are not acceptable.
  • We can accept other bags (Meijer, Lowes, Menards, etc.), but a yard waste bulk tag must be attached to each bag.
  • Bulk yard waste materials need to be tagged and tied.
  • Bundled yard waste cannot exceed 4 feet in length and 2 inches in diameter.
  • Raking or sweeping of leaves or any other material into the street or gutter is not permitted. Material swept into the street can clog catch basins and cause street flooding, and the property owner may receive a code enforcement fine.

Commercial Vendors who wish to dispose of material here will need to reach out to WeCare Denali directly at 616-268-5164 to set up a commercial account.


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