Public Works and Environmental Services

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our administrative office is open 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Mon. - Fri.
703-324-5230 TTY 711
12000 Government Center Parkway
Suite 458, Fairfax, Va 22035
Eric Forbes
Director, Solid Waste Management

Yard Waste

backyard compostingYard waste includes grass clippings, leaves, straw, flowers, small prunings, and brush (i.e., branches and twigs smaller than 4-feet in length) generated during general yard maintenance. Yard waste does not include materials generated during tree removal, land clearing, or home renovation projects such as tree stumps, lumber treated wood, pallets, sawdust, dirt, mulch, sod, or food waste.

How to Manage Yard Waste

  • Manage it onsite
    Leave grass clippings on your lawn by grasscycling, and/or backyard composting yard waste along with other organics, such as food waste, to enrich your soil and promote healthy plants. For more information, visit Composting Organic Waste.
  • Set it out for curbside collection*
    Use a reusable container or paper yard bags. Yard waste placed in plastic bags may not be collected. If you are a county collection customer, visit Curbside Yard Waste for setout instructions. If a private hauler collects your trash, please follow their instructions. 
  • Self-haul to a county facility
    Yard waste is accepted at the county's I-95 Landfill Complex and the I-66 Transfer Station disposal sites for a fee. As of April 19, 2021, yard waste in plastic bags delivered to the I-66 Transfer Station or the I-95 Landfill will be rejected. Commercial yard waste loads containing plastic bags delivered after April 19, 2021 will be subject to a penalty fee of $132/ton. For more information regarding fees, please visit residential disposal fees and regulations. See also Tree Stumps
  • Landscapers
    Landscapers should not place yard waste in plastic bags for curbside collection. Yard waste placed in plastic bags may not be collected. 

*Please Note: yard waste is collected at curbside year-round, but only processed for recycling from March 1 through December 24. With the exception of Christmas trees which are collected and recycled the first two weeks in January, the small amount of yard waste generated is disposed of as trash. Contact your collection company regarding their service.

Exceptions to Managing Yard Waste

Large amounts of yard waste & brush: If you are a county collection customer, please see Curbside Yard Waste. If a private hauler collects your trash, please contact them or a bulk/junk removal company for collection services.

Townhome Communities: Some townhome communities that do not generate a large amount of yard waste may be exempted from county collection requirements by seeking approval of an "alternative yard waste recycling system." For more information about how to qualify, please call our office at 703-324-5230, TTY 711.

Bagging Yard Waste

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