Yard Waste

State law prohibits the disposal of leaves and other yard waste in landfills; therefore, these materials cannot be placed in plastic garbage bags or mixed with normal garbage. Please also be aware that leaf burning is prohibited in Elgin.

Yard waste includes materials such as leaves, brush, branches, grass clippings, plants, weeds and other similar waste. Yard waste must be placed in biodegradable paper bags (maximum 33 gallons and 45 pounds) for collection. Yard waste placed in plastic bags will not be collected.

As part of Elgin’s sustainability efforts, residents are encouraged to compost leaves or mulch leaves into their lawn with a lawnmower. Mulching controls weeds, uses less fertilizer, enables better water infiltration, reduces thatch and improves soil quality.

Yard Waste Pick-Up 

Yard waste is collected weekly April 1 - November 30 on your scheduled pick-up day. 

When are stickers required? One garbage sticker must be affixed to each bag of yard waste for collection from May 1 through September 30.

Stickers are not required on bagged yard waste during the entire month of April and October 1 through December 1.

Leaf Collection Programs

Free bagged leaf collection begins October 1 and the City's on-street collection program in designated areas will begin on Monday, October 31.  Both leaf collection programs run through the first week of December. These programs help residents remove seasonal yard waste, as well as lessen the potential for flooding from excess leaves left in the street that can block storm sewer drains.

Free Yard Waste Bag Collection

October 1 - December 1, Waste Management will not require stickers for yard waste bags. Bags are collected weekly on residents’ regular garbage pickup day.

On-Street Leaf Collection

Beginning Monday, October 31, weather permitting, the City of Elgin will collect leaves raked out into the street in designated areas. Leaves should be raked along the curb by 6:00 a.m. on the designated area's special collection day, shown on map below. Leaves placed in the street after the crews have passed will not be collected until the next scheduled date. Note: The on-street collection day may differ from bagged leaf collection day.

Please do not mix trash, branches or other yard waste with leaf piles. Avoid parking on the street on scheduled leaf collection days; leaf piles blocked by cars will not be collected.  

Residents in the on-street collection areas may also place leaves in yard waste bags for free collection by Waste Management on regular garbage collection days.

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Please remember that weather and other delays may affect the published schedule.  In the event of snow, all on-street leaf collection will cease as snow and ice control operations take priority. Therefore, residents are encouraged to bag leaves for weekly collection by Waste Management whenever inclement weather is forecast.

For more information, visit the city's website or call Elgin 311. For updates throughout the leaf collection season, follow the city of Elgin on Facebook and Twitter.

Sod and Mulch
Sod and Mulch cannot be disposed of in the brown paper yard waste bags.

Sod can be placed in individual garbage bags not to exceed 50 pounds per bag. Any bags of sod or mulch not placed within the garbage cart (with the lid closed), must be placed in garbage bags curbside with a refuse sticker attached to each bag for collection.

The reason being, in many cases this type of material is contaminated with stones, and other landscaping products that does not process well, and could cause damage to the equipment used to break down the materials. 

Brush & Tree Trimmings Collection

Stickers are not required for bundled brush. All brush must be tied into bundles with biodegradable twine or string in piles not exceeding five feet in length, two feet in diameter and 45 pounds. Branches thicker than 2 inches in diameter will not be collected.  

Christmas Trees

Christmas Trees will be collected free of charge December 26 through January 15 from all residential households. Stickers are not required for Christmas trees during this period.

All decorations, stands, etc. must be removed from trees in order to be collected. Do not place trees in plastic bags. Trees in plastic bags will not be collected. After January 15, each Christmas Tree will require one visibly affixed refuse sticker to be collected.

Yard waste collection services (except Christmas Trees), are not provided to condominium and townhome units.