Yard waste and trimmings account for nearly 17% of municipal solid waste. This waste consists of grass, leaves, tree, and brush trimmings – adding up to approximately 31 million tons each year. Through composting, we can reduce the amount of yard waste entering the solid waste stream.
Yard waste and debris can also clog culverts, storm drains, and pipes, causing flooding. Piles of leaves and grass clippings can overload a waterway with nutrients which cause algae blooms. These blooms can harm fish and cause toxin pollution which can affect recreation areas.
What You Can Do
The most preferable option for reducing the generation of yard waste is to switch from manicured turf grass to a landscape containing native plants those plants which have evolved over thousands of years in a particular region. As native plants require minimal or no mowing, the generation of yard wastes are significantly reduced or completely eliminated. In addition, these plants do not require fertilizers, pesticides or watering, due to the fact they are so well adapted to their environment. The reduction or elimination of lawn maintenance equipment significantly reduces air pollution. The native plants also provide shelter and food for wildlife; promote bio diversity and stewardship of our natural heritage and save money.
Some communities provide yard waste pick up at the curbside or at drop-off locations.
If you live inside the city limits of any Greenville County city you should contact their solid waste or public works division to find out more information on yard waste collection.
County residents can take their yard waste to any Twin Chimneys Landfill (preferred), Convenience Center, and some curbside is available. You can even get FREE MULCH at the Twin Chimneys Landfill. Vehicles are loaded free of charge 9am-12pm, 1pm-3pm Thursday-Saturday. ½ Scoop (1.5 cubic yards) free, $15 for additional 3 cubic yards. For more information contact Greenville County Solid Waste Division at 864-249-9672.
Yard trimmings can be transformed into compost, which can provide useful nutrients to soil. Mixing compost with soil helps control erosion, strengthens soil fertility, maintains pH balance, and encourages the development of healthy roots in plants and trees. You can construct your own composting bin in your backyard and reuse the compost. A popular type of composting, known as vermicomposting, uses earthworms to recycle organic matter into nutrient-rich vermicompost and worm castings returning organic matter to the soil.