Tips for a Clean Chesapeake

Make sure that trash is placed inside the container and the lid is closed to avoid litter to fall or blow out onto the ground. It's every citizen's responsibility to keep Chesapeake clean. There are many ways which citizens and community groups can help.

  • Whenever possible, mulch grass clippings and leaves back into your lawn (see the "Let It Lay" section below.) When this isn't possible, recycle yard waste and leaves in clear plastic bags and set out for your weekly trash collection.
  • Place plastic containers, glass, metal cans, paper and cardboard in blue recycle bins for curbside collection.
  • Always make sure the lid on your trash container is closed (wet trash and rain increase disposal costs).
  • Ensure trash containers have adequate clearance (at least 3 feet) from obstacles.
  • See Rules for Disposal for specific information.

For information on programs available to protect Chesapeake's environment, check out the Chesapeake Environmental Improvement Council page.

"Let It Lay, It's Okay"

Grass recycling is a simple and easy way to help the environment. Grass recycling helps reduce disposal, labor, and fertilizer costs and most important, saves you time by not having to stop and empty the grass bag. You will also save up to 30% of your time when you aren't stopping to deal with grass clippings. Also, since you no longer need trash bags, there is no heavy lifting required.

Grass clippings are 75% to 85% water, so they quickly decompose and release nutrients to fertilize your lawn. In fact, a ton of grass clipping contains more than 1,700 pounds of water. Grass recycling helps reduce fertilizer and water usage, which can protect local streams, rivers and the ocean from pollution, since runoff from yards and gardens can contain fertilizers and pesticides.

How to Recycle Grass

Successful grass recycling requires nothing more than leaving your grass clipping on the lawn. By following these simple rules, you can have a healthy yard and be doing your part for the environment by reducing waste:

  • Keep your mowing blade sharp
  • Mow when the grass is dry
  • Never cut off more than 1/3 of the grass blade in one mowing
  • Mow every 5 to 7 days during spring and summer

Do not worry about thatch. Thatch is a matted layer of dead roots and stems usually caused by too much water and fertilizer. Since grass clippings are 85% water and decompose quickly, clippings will not cause thatch.

With collection costs at a high rate, keeping your clipping out of the garbage truck saves time and money and helps protect the environment. So, if you want to spend 40% less time in doing yard work, recycle your grass clippings.

If you follow these "Let It Lay, It's Okay" guidelines, you will have a healthy lawn and never have to bag grass clippings again.