Yard Waste/ Compost

compostersarrivalWeekly curbside yard waste collection is intended to help you dispose of…

  • leaves
  • yard trimmings
  • sticks and branches

Leaves, grass clippings, garden debris and small brush are collected curbside in bags with the Ottumwa/Wapello logo printed on them. These paper bags can be purchased for $1.00 each at major local grocery stores, at the courtesy counters. Properly prepared light brush and tree limbs can be collected too – brush and branches under 3 inches in diameter must be cut into 36″ lengths, bundled and securely tied into bundles that weigh less than 50 lb. This service is not intended for logs or disposal of entire trees. Yard waste is collected curbside from April 1st to November 30th. Customers may use the drop off at the Landfill for off-season yard waste disposal. Live Christmas trees will still be collected during January. Yard Waste collection south of the Des Moines River is on Tuesdays; collection north of the river is on Thursdays.  To ensure curbside collection, place yard waste at the curb by 4:00 AM on your designated day. Yard waste may NOT be disposed of with general trash in the landfill. Call Bridge City Sanitation at 641-682-1700 to have your yard waste collected.

Drop Off Disposal – Landfill 

Individuals choosing to haul yard waste to the landfill may do so free of charge. The Landfill accepts all types of yard waste; however, limbs and brush should be separated from grass clippings and leaves. There is a citizens convenience area south of the scale that residents may use for grass and leaves only. Even compostable sacks may not be left in this area.  Businesses, including lawn mowing, leaf collection, and landscaping services, will be charged $30.00 per ton with a minimum charge of $7.50 for up to 500 lbs. Yard waste must be separated from other waste and removed from plastic bags before disposing in the composting area. Remember, all loads going to the Landfill MUST be covered, or a $10 fee will be charged for residential vehicles and a $25-$50 fee will be charged for commercial vehicles. Landfill and Recycling Center operations are self-sufficient, funded by fees and the sale of recyclable material, and do not receive property tax funding through the City of Ottumwa or Wapello County.


Organic materials like grass clippings, leaves and food scraps can be composted at home. Composting household and yard wastes is a green alternative to conventional disposal methods. The benefit to the homeowner is the creation of free soil additive for landscaping and gardening.  More than 25 percent of the typical household’s waste is yard trimmings and food scraps that can be composted. Active composting reduces the amount of waste being thrown away, saving space at the landfill and providing a useful alternative to burning. Composting transforms organic material into material that can improve the soil used in gardens, lawns, and houseplants.  Compost fuels plant growth and restores vitality to depleted soil. It is also free and easy to make. Composting recycles kitchen waste; it can divert as much as 30% of household waste from the landfill. It introduces beneficial microscopic organisms into the soil that help aerate the soil, break down organic material for plant use, and fend off plant disease. Compost is good for the environment, offering a free and environmentally healthy alternative to chemical fertilizers. For more information on composting log onto http://cwmi.css.cornell.edu

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