Green Waste

Why it is bad for water quality?

Yard trimmings, grass clippings, and leaves blown or swept into the street can reach the storm drain and can damage aquatic environments by adding too much vegetation to the water. When too many decomposing plants or lawn clippings end up in a waterbody, they take oxygen out of the water, suffocating other aquatic life like fish and frogs.

What can we do to reduce or prevent landscape waste from reaching our waterways?

  • Leaves on the streetDo not sweep or blow leaves and landscape trimmings into the street. Make sure to collect all clippings from mowing and hedge trimming and place them into the Green Waste cart for composting.
  • Avoid over-irrigating your lawn. Water is needlessly wasted and the excess will simply wash away any fertilizers or pesticides you might be using. Additionally, any water flowing down the street will pick up pollutants in the gutters and carry them to the storm drain.
  • If moving dirt during gardening activities, do not leave exposed piles of dirt on your sidewalks or driveways for extended periods of time as the dirt will end up on the street and in the storm drain.
  • The City of Oceanside has a handy flier called Gardening Tips to Prevent Storm Water Pollution  (263 KB)  for gardeners interested in a brief reference guide.
  • For more information on how to recycle your green waste please click here.

What do the laws say about lawn waste?

It is illegal for lawn waste to enter a storm drain.

Report any water running in the street when it is not raining or someone dumping something in the storm drain or curb and gutter by calling the
Urban Runoff Hotline at 760-435-4500.