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Leaf and Yard Programs

YEARLY Free compost

Shovelling Free Compost Thunder BayCompost suitable for lawns and flower gardens is available to all residents at no charge at the Solid Waste & Recycling Facility each spring, while quantities last, weather permitting.

Access to the compost pick-up area is located east of the old landfill entrance on John Street Road. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday from 8:30 am - 5 pm, and Saturday from 9 am - 4 pm.

Residents bringing garbage, recycling and/or hazardous household waste are reminded to dispose of these items at the Solid Waste & Recycling Facility on Mapleward Road first before visiting the special compost pick-up area. 

Residents are also advised to bring a shovel and some bags or containers to carry compost home. Quantities are limited to a maximum of one half ton load per resident. To inquire about compost availability, call our Dispatchers at 625-2195.


GENERAL INFORMATION ON LEAF & YARD WASTE COLLECTION

Once in the spring and again in the fall, place your leaves, bundled branches, and garden waste out for curbside pickup. Look for the leaf symbol on your garbage collection calendar for your leaf & yard waste collection day. Use only kraft (paper) bags. Kraft bags, available at most hardware and grocery stores, are biodegradable and can be placed directly into the compost pile.

Leaf & Yard Waste Calendar SymbolThere is no bag limit on leaf and yard waste, but bags must weigh less than 18 kg or 40 lbs. 

You may also bundle branches and sticks with rope or twine. Bundles must be less that 1 metre (39 inches) long and 61 cm (24 inches) in diameter, and weigh less than 18 kg (40 lbs.).

Leaf and yard waste materials are taken to the City of Thunder Bay Solid Waste & Recycling Facility and made into soil-enriching compost.

You can also deliver compostable materials such as leaves, shrubs and branches directly to the landfill site compost area. No grass clippings please.

Outside of the spring and fall Leaf & Yard Waste collections, bundled branches may be placed out with your curbside waste & recycling collection at any time of year, if bundled as described above. Other yard waste (e.g. grass clippings, which are not accepted in the City's composting program) placed out for collection at these times must be packaged in plastic garbage bags. We encourage residents to compost these materials, rather than sending them to the landfill. Grasscycling is another solution - simply leave your clippings on your lawn to enrich the soil.


 

leaf & yard waste becomes compost 

compost at the City's landfillLeaf & yard waste collected during the City's Leaf & Yard Waste collection weeks is taken to the landfill site on Mapleward Road, processed into finer material and piled up to decompose further. The result is high-quality, well-aged and screened compost, which is provided free of charge to Thunder Bay residents when it is ready. This compost is ideal for landscaping, lawns and flower gardens.

Often compost is made available to residents in spring or early summer. Watch for announcements on the City's News Releases webpage, and bring your shovel!

Outdoor ComposterYou've probably heard that you can also use your own leaf & yard waste, and organic (no meat or grease) kitchen scraps to make compost at home. Need help getting started? EcoSuperior's Composting Factsheet (pdf) is a great source of information. The City provides Composters (through EcoSuperior) for a subsidized cost of $25 per unit. Proof of address is required. Pick up yours at EcoSuperior on Red River Road. See EcoSuperior's Outdoor Composters webpage for details.

Grasscycling

Recycle grass clippings by leaving them on your lawn instead of raking and throwing them away. Grass clippings are a natural, nutrient-rich fertilizer that’s good for your lawn. Grasscycling saves you time, reduces waste and promotes a healthy root system in your turf. Best of all, it gives you more time to relax and enjoy the summer! Grass clippings are not accepted in the City’s Leaf & Yard Waste Composting Program.

For more information on the special one-day-only seasonal collections, contact Infrastructure & Operations Dispatch at 625-2195.