Boise has been composting since June 2017, and the program has been an overwhelming success. Since the launch, we have collected over 40,000 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.
Leaves accumulate quickly as colder weather sets in, so start collecting leaves as soon as they begin to fall.
Leaves are collected each week, so you don't need to wait to fill leaf bags and set them out on the curb for pick up. Simply fill your compost cart first, place extra leaves in paper leaf bags and set out on the curb on your scheduled collection day. To help ensure we can pick up everyone’s leaf bags in a timely manner, we’re asking customers to set out no more than 10 leaf bags per week. If you set out more than 10 bags per week, they will still be collected, but it may take several weeks to collect the rest.
We will collect bags every week until the bags are gone. Once your compost cart has been emptied, and you still have some leaf bags remaining at the curb, feel free to take your cart inside. There will be another truck that will come by within a day to collect multiple bags.
Drop Off Locations
Residential customers can also take paper leaf bags (no plastic bags) to several drop off sites from October 28 to December 6. No contractors (landscaping companies) are permitted to use the containers.
- Elm Grove Park:Open every day
- Cassia Park: Open every day
- Boise Transfer Station - 4485 S Curtis Rd, Boise, ID 83705: Open Monday - Saturday
- Ada County Landfill (October 21st to December 9th) - 10300 Seaman’s Gulch Rd. Boise, ID: Open Monday - Saturday
- Joplin Road Compost Pick-up Site – 12142 Joplin Rd. Boise, ID (Look for large blue container just off Joplin Rd at the bottom of the hill): Open every day
- Kristin Armstrong Municipal Park: Open every day (dirt road on north end of the park)
Compost Pick Up Sites
Compost is available today.
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.
The City of Boise produces compost from residential yard debris and vegetative food scraps. Compost material in excess of resident and city facility is offered for wholesaling. The City is now accepting letters of interest to purchase the total quantity of compost produced on site which is not used for city purposes. Letters of interest must be submitted by October 1, 2019.
This opportunity is also published in the Idaho Statesman. For more information, please view the Legal Notice and Letter of Interest.
Community Compost Give Back
In addition to our permanent compost pickup site at the Idaho Botanical Garden, we offer seasonal compost giveback to neighborhood leaders, organizations, associations, or simply motivated neighbors the chance to have compost delivered to their neighborhoods. This program is now open for fall 2019 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.
Applicants are responsible for the following:
- Completing an application and waiver for compost delivery
- Designating a drop-off location for the compost delivery (see details below)
- Developing a plan and strategy to safely use/distribute all material within 72 hours of drop-off
- Collecting waivers from individuals who collect compost (the city will provide these)
- All applicants and delivery sites must be within Boise city limits.
- Each applicant must have one primary organizer to serve as a contact point.
- Compost is for personal use only. It is prohibited to sell, re-sell or trade any goods or services for compost.
Drop Off Sites
Applicants must designate a location that meets the following area requirements:
Compost placement area: 40 feet x 20 feet x 10 feet (LxWxH)
Delivery truck accessibility: At least 70 feet for turnaround and maneuvering
Site location must be on private property and must not block storm drains, roadways or sidewalks and must be safe for delivery and loading material.
Questions? Contact us.
© 2019 City of Boise. All rights reserved.
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