Yard Waste

Yard Waste



Fall & Winter 2019




                 Yard Waste Curbside Collection Season continues from October 7 through December 13 and will be collected on a weekly basis.


Please keep in mind that Yard Waste is collected with a separate truck on the same day as your trash and recycling collection.



How to Manage Yard Waste:

1. Curbside Collection during prescribed times of the year.

2. Start a Backyard Leaf Heap (pile) / or Compost pile: 

Yard waste will naturally break down quickly right on your yard.  Really there is no reason, if you have room, to move this material off your property. Of course, only make a pile on property that you own, but this is an easy way for you to help our environment and keep your yard looking good.

3.  Leave Your Clippings on the Lawn (GrassCycling) :

During the summer, as the temperatures rise our lawns growth slows down.  Usually you see you are not mowing as frequently as you did in the Spring. A great option during this time, is raise the level on your mower, and let the small 1" clippings fall right back on your lawn.  This small pieces break down quickly and give your lawn much needed water & nutrients.  

Most homeowners  fertilized their lawn in the Spring, and now all those nutrients are in your grass.  These can go right back on your yard- if you leave these when you mow. Gardners share that 3 mowings = one fertilization application.  But if you remove the clippings, you are ultimately removing all those nutrients you just paid for back in the Spring.

Lots of information is available on the internet. Earth Easy says "Grasscycling is the easiest way to nuture your yard". Read more  

And better yet, you are now recycling even more as you GRASS CYCLE!  Our environment will thank you!


 Curbside Pick-Up Program 
*  Collected on your regular trash day (see seasonal schedule) using a seperate "yard waste" only vehicle.
*  Accepted yard waste must be in brown biodegradable lawn bags or small bundles of branches.  We cannot collect material loose in cans. 
* Bundles are branches under 2 inches in diameter and smaller than 3 feet in length.
*  No limit on the number of bags / bundles per week. 
*  We are turning the yard waste into compost. No plastic bags, trash, stones or non-organic waste can be mixed in.

* Please make sure you rebag any yard waste bags that are deteriorating.  Our crew will not be able to collect them even when the service begins.  


What is yard waste?  Yard waste that is accepted our seasonal collections is defined as vegetation, grass, leaves, and weeds etc. Small bundles of branches, that are twined and less than 2 inches in diameter and 3 feet in length, are also accepted. It does not include dirt, stones or trash, which cannot be mixed in.

Yard waste colleted in bags or bundles only.  For yard waste to be collected curbside or at our seasonal drop off, it must be in brown biodegradable lawn bags or small bundles of branches that are the accecpted size listed above. Loose yard waste in cans cannot be collected.

When is the curbside pick-up season? The town offers weekly curbside collection for 10 weeks in Spring and weekly curbside collection for10 weeks again in the Fall. These weeks coincide when yard work is the heaviest, spring cleaning and fall leaves.  During the Summer season between the Spring and Fall weekly collection, the town offers every other week curbside collection services.  

Collection takes place on your regular trash & recycling day, but a third separate truck comes to collect just this material. Please remember, yard waste is NOT  allowed in the trash or recycling program and cannot be collected with these programs. 

Spring season begins approximately the 3rd week in April and continues weekly for 10 weeks.   Summer season collection begins in July and continues every other week until Fall season begins.  Fall season begins approximately the 2nd week in October and continues weekly for 10 weeks.  Actual dates will vary as we always start on Monday and we do take into account our current weather conditions.  

What happens to the yard waste after collected?  It is turned into compost. This is why it cannot be bagged in plastic, mixed with trash or non-organic materials.  

It is transported to the state landfill (RIRRC) and deposited in the seperate compost area at the facility. Next, it is run through a shredder and turned for about a year, which allows this material to naturally breakdown. Within short time, your old leaves and clippings, will decompose and become nutrient-rich humus which fuels plant growth and restores vitality to depleted soil.  

RIRRC then offers this grade A compost to residents for $30 / cubic yard or $8 for a 40 pound bag. Look below, as it is easy to  make your own for free!

What is the best way to get rid of yard waste before or after the curbside collection season?    If a resident is in need of disposing yard waste during the winter months, Smithfield Peat Co. located at 295 Washington Hwy. in Smithfield will accept yard waste for a fee.

Curbside Yard Waste Collection will resume again in the Spring.

Or look below, this might be a great time to start that backyard compost pile! 

What is the best way to handle yard waste all year long? Yard waste should always be kept out of the trash. Ever wonder where the smell comes from when you drive past the landfill in Johnston?  It is all the organic waste (yard waste & food scraps) that has been put in with the trash.  Yard waste can easily be kept out of the landfill with our town segregated collection, seasonal drop-offs options or starting a compost/leaf pile.  

Yard waste does not  need to leave your property. See the benefits & ways to manage yard waste right on your land.

Leaf Piles -- a green option.   Yard waste will easily break down naturally right in a pile on your yard. For properties that have an area, this is easy on you and great for our town & enivornment. 

Look at all the benefits:
* this saves you time bagging and money as no need to purchase brown bags.
* this helps our Town: less expense sending trucks to collect this material
* saves our environment:  no fumes and pollution, less fuels needed as we don't have these large trucks moving this material all around our state.

Stop Bagging Grass Clippings -  During the summer months, lawns generally grow slower because of the warmer temperatures and less rain.  To keep lawns green and healthy during this season, experts recommend leave the clippings right on your lawn.  click here for best practices recommended by Scotts Lawn Care 

Look at all the benefits:
* less work & easier for you 
* adds nutrients & water to your lawn
* free fertilizer for your lawn. 3 mowings = 1 fertilizer application
* grass clippings help your lawn hold water and prevent excess water run-off
* saves expense for our town
* great for our environment 


Composting - An even greener way that handles even more organic waste.  Composting allows you to add both yard waste and some food scraps into one pile. More items going in, gives you even more green benefits -- more items out of your waste stream, more nutrients in the end product, and super easy.  

Just put yard waste, fruit & vegetable scraps and some water, turn a few times with a shovel or pitchfork, and after a short time -- "Black Gold" aka compost.  This rich soil is pH netural, filled with great nutrients, significantly reduces what would of been in your trash, saves fuels and emissions from trucking materials, reduces smells at the landfill and gives you free fertilizer for your gardens. As you see, the "green" benefits are great.  

Getting started is easy -- just click below. 

Clck here for How to Start a Backyard Compost