Winter Curbside Compost Collection

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Customer Service Center

Larcom City Hall, first floor 
7.30 a.m. to 5:30​ p.m. Monday-Friday (except holidays)

301 E. Huron St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104

Assistance by phone or email 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday-Friday (except holidays)
[email protected]

​​​​​​​​2023 winter curbside compost collection


The monthly pickups will occur the first full week of each month. Curbside compost car​t service will take place during the weeks of Jan. 2, Feb. 6 and March 6. Residents will therefore have their compost cart serviced, once a month, on their regular curbside service day. Regular weekly compost pickups will begin again on Monday, April 3, 2023. 

  • Only compost carts will be serviced during the winter months. 

  • Paper yard bags or bundled branches will n​ot be collected.​

  • ​Food scraps/waste, including meat and bones, are required to be in Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) certified​ or paper grocery bags to keep material from freezing to the carts.

Compost cart winter​ tips

The city and residents learned a great deal during the initial program. Our biggest lesson was that food, leaves, and other material can easily freeze to the inside of a cart making it unserviceable. With that in mind, please keep the following guidance in mind to help mitigate this issue: 

  • Drain as much liquid as possible from food scraps.
  • Place an opened paper yard-waste bag inside the compost cart to hold the food scraps. 
  • Put a couple pieces of flattened cardboard (1-2 large pizza boxes are perfect) at the bottom of the compost cart before adding produce. This buffer at the bottom of the cart allows the materials to slide out more easily and not freeze to the cart.
  • Place materials in a BPI certified or CMA-W certified bag and into your compost cart. It is advised that food scraps be double bagged during the winter, using both a BPI or CMA-W certified and paper yard bag. 
  • To keep the compost cart from getting messy, wrap drippy wet items (e.g., coffee grounds, melon rinds) in 1-2 sheets of compostable paper towels before putting into the compost cart.
  • Loose leaves can be left on the ground. They return nutrients to trees as well as provide cover for overwintering creatures including Lightening Bugs/Fireflies. Loose leaves can freeze to the cart, which may cause it to fall into the truck while tipping. If this happens, please contact City Customer Service to request a new cart.  
  • The city does not pick up leaves left in piles at the curb or raked into the street. In addition, it is illegal for residents or contractors to move leaves from private property into the street or onto another property, including city parks.
  • If material is frozen to the cart when the city attempts service it won't be serviced again until following month during the first full week of the month.
  • Use bungee cords to thwart clever racco​ons, remember to remove them at the curb. 
  • Rinse out carts, if temperatures allow, with non-toxic soap and water and empty onto your grass or gravel, never down the storm drain.  ​