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If you do not live in an area that receives organics collections or special fall leaf collection for composting, then you must dispose of your leaves with your garbage.

You can place leaves, grass clippings, and small twigs (less than 1/2 inch in diameter) curbside to be collected as trash on your regularly scheduled trash collection days. 

Put your items in:

  • Black bags
  • Unlined trash containers

Twigs and branches greater than 1/2 inch in diameter cannot be mixed with leaves and grass clippings.

There is no limit to the amount of clippings that can be put out for collection as long as they were produced by residents and not landscapers. It is illegal for commercial landscapers to dispose of yard waste by placing it at the curb for collection. Landscapers and hired professionals must dispose of yard waste and clippings at a permitted composting facility.

Leaves may also be composted in your backyard, left on your lawn, or taken to a neighborhood-based leaf and yard waste composting site.

Learn more about leaf and yard waste.

Find composting locations.

Special Fall Leaf Collections

During the Fall, the Department of Sanitation will conduct special collections of leaves in certain districts around the City.

You can learn more about the fall leaf collection schedule, guidelines, restrictions, and more.

    The Department of Sanitation conducts two seasonal collections for leaves in November and December and turns them into compost.

    Only certain Sanitation Districts receive fall leaf collection services. There are specific guidelines you need to follow in order to have your leaves collected.

    Leaf Setout Guidelines

    During the special fall leaf collection period, leaves must be placed curbside after 4 PM on designated Saturdays for collection beginning Sunday morning according to the following guidelines:

    • Leaves should be placed in 30-gallon, brown paper lawn and leaf bags
    • Leaves may also be set out loose in unlined garbage cans labeled “yard waste”
    • Plastic bags cannot be used to discard leaves during the leaf collection period
    • Tree prunings, firewood, branches, and yard clippings from hired professionals cannot be included

    If paper leaf bags or unlined trash receptacles containing leaves are set out before the leaf collection period, they will not be collected until the period begins, or may be collected as trash.

    If you receive organics collection services, continue to discard your yard waste according to the organics collection rules on your scheduled pickup day(s).

    Fall Leaf Collection Districts and Schedule

    Queens:

    Fall leaf collections will occur in Queens Sanitation Districts 1, 3, 4, 6, and 12.

    Set leaves out curbside in paper lawn and leaf bags or unlined bins after 4 PM on these days:

    • Saturday, November 23
    • Saturday, December 7

    Bronx, Brooklyn, and Staten Island:

    Fall leaf collections will occur in:

    • Bronx Sanitation Districts 5, 7, and 9
    • Brooklyn Sanitation Districts 5, 9, 14, 17, and 18
    • Staten Island Sanitation Districts 1*, 2, and 3
      • *Castleton Corners, Graniteville, Mariners Harbor, Port Richmond, West Brighton, and Westerleigh do not receive seasonal leaf collection. These neighborhoods have weekly composting collection service year-round.

    Set leaves out curbside in paper lawn and leaf bags or unlined bins after 4 PM on these days:

    • Saturday, November 16
    • Saturday, November 30

    Learn more about special fall leaf collections.

    Organics Districts and Unserved Areas

    If you live in an area that does not receive fall leaf collection, you may put out leaves with trash.

    If you receive organics collection, place your leaves out with your organics for disposal according to the organics collection rules for yard waste.

    Paper lawn and leaf bags are generally available from hardware and home improvement stores as well as many larger supermarkets.

    There are also events in every borough where these bags will be given away for free.

    Get information on where to get paper lawn and leaf bags.