Yard Trimmings, Food Waste & Compostables


Compostable waste makes up over 30% of what is currently being thrown away in the city. Compostable waste includes:
  • Non-recyclable, food contaminated paper (ex: pizza boxes)
  • Paper towels
  • Plate scrapings
  • Soiled napkins
  • Vegetable scraps
  • Yard trimmings
All of these materials are recyclable and should not be placed in the garbage. They should be placed in your green organics cart or as detailed below.

Yard Trimmings

Yard trimmings can be collected in:
  • 96 gallon organics carts (available at no charge from Recology South Valley, 408-842-3358)
  • Regular 32-gallon garbage cans
  • Bundles no larger than 3' x 3'. Individual branches must be less than 3' in length and 6" in diameter. Please tie with twine or other compostable material.
  • You may place up to 7 additional cans or bundles out each recycling day

Food Waste Storage Containers

The city will provide 2 under-the-sink containers to assist residents in storing their food wastes before taking them out to the yard trimmings cart. Find out how to get yours (PDF).


  • DO NOT put compostables in plastic bags. Plastic does not compost. Yard trimmings that are put in plastic bags will not be collected.
  • Yard trimmings will not be collected as regular trash. Recology South Valley has been instructed not to collect garbage that contains yard trimmings.