Boise has been composting since June 2017, and the program has been an overwhelming success. Since the launch, we have collected over 70,000 tons of compostable material! Completed compost is available at our pick-up sites at the Idaho Botanical Garden and Joplin Rd. Residents can pick-up two cubic yards per year for free.
- Curbside compost collection is weekly and unlimited. Place any overflow compost in paper bags next to your cart
- No plastic please! Put your compost in paper bags or loose in the cart
- Double check your yard waste for dog toys, such as balls and frisbees
- Just because something says 'compostable' does not mean it can go in your compost cart. Compostable bags and trays are made to break down in a landfill and cannot be processed at our facility.
Watch the video below for a quick overview.
Christmas Tree Collection
Christmas trees can be set out with your compost cart at any time. Please follow the guidelines below to ensure we can collect your tree!
- Remove all ornaments, lights, tinsel, or other decorations from the tree. Wreaths and trees sprayed with artificial snow (flock) cannot be accepted.
- Cut trees into segments of no more than 4’ in length. Short lengths allow the tree to easily come out of the cart when it is emptied.
- Fill your compost cart first, then set out remaining segments (no more than 60 lbs. in weight) next to your cart on collection day.
Compost Pick Up Sites
Material is delivered to both sites Monday through Friday as available. Compost is available on a first come, first serve basis.
You can pick up compost at:
Idaho Botanical Garden | 2355 N. Penitentiary Road. Boise, ID 83702
Hours of Operation: Monday - Sunday, normal business hours – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Joplin Road Compost Site | 12142 W Joplin Rd, Boise, ID 83714
Hours of Operation: Monday-Sunday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Compost is delivered to a site as it becomes available.
Ongoing pick-up of finished compost is self-serve. Come prepared to load your own compost with shovels and sturdy containers (e.g. bags, boxes, buckets). Limit two cubic yards per customer per year. Compost is available for Boise participating compost customers only; no commercial use is permitted. For more information, please contact us.
Application for lawn improvement, mulch around trees and plants at your home for landscaping and as a soil amendment for vegetable gardens.
What Can You Compost
- Leaves, tree branches, stumps, and limbs (up to 4 ft in length and less than 60 pounds)
- Fruits and vegetables
- Yard and garden waste
- Coffee grounds, coffee filters, tea bags and egg shells
- Pine cones and needles
- Fats, oils and grease
- Pet waste
- Grains, bread and pasta
- Meat, fish, bones or any other animal by product
Keeping Your Cart Clean
Watch the video for a quick tutorial on how to keep your compost cart clean.
Other Cart Tips
A few simple steps will keep your new compost cart clean and reduce potential odors.
- Set out cart every week (even when it's not full). Regular collection will make sure material doesn't sit in your cart too long.
- Line your cart with newspaper or a piece of cardboard to keep material from sticking to the bottom of your cart.
- Store cart in cool, dry place out of direct sunlight.
- Place kitchen scraps in layers between grass, leaves or other garden material.
- Use paper bags (not plastic, biodegradable, nor compostable) to keep kitchen scraps contained.
Residential customers can request larger cart sizes, if needed. Cart sizes are available in 48, 65 and 95 gallons.
- If your cart needs to be cleaned, rinse out your cart with a hose and dump rinse water out on your lawn (not in a storm drain).
- Compost collection is unlimited. Simply fill your cart first, then place any extra materials in paper leaf bags and set out next to your cart for collection.
- Finished compost is available free to participating residents.
- Only compost program participants receive year-round leaf collection.
- By participating in the compost program, customers receive the lowest rate.
- Compost cart is conveniently serviced the same day as your trash.
Community Compost Give Back
In addition to our permanent compost giveback location at the Idaho Botanical Gardens, the City of Boise is pleased to offer neighborhood compost giveback. This is a great opportunity to build community and pick up free compost close to home. The program is free to participate for all City of Boise neighborhoods.
Applications are closed for the winter season but please check back in March 2021 for spring giveback.
How It Works
Representatives of homeowners’ associations, neighborhood associations, local organizations, or private individuals representing their communities may apply for the compost giveback. They must detail a location for drop off and a plan for distribution of the compost. Once submitted, the City of Boise will review the application to ensure that it meets requirements. If the application is approved, a City of Boise representative will contact the applicant within 12 days to finalize details and approximately 25 cubic yards of compost will be delivered at the designated site at an agreed upon date and time.
© 2021 City of Boise. All rights reserved.
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