Annual fall leaf pickup program to begin next Monday, October 17

Leaves have begun to fall throughout Muscatine with the Department of Public Works once again providing a valued service to the citizens of Muscatine with the annual Fall Leaf Pickup.

Leaf vacuum trucks will begin hitting the streets of Muscatine on Monday, October 17, in Zone 1 (see map) for the 2022 Fall Leaf Pickup. There are eight zones that the leaf trucks will work through on consecutive weekdays. 

The second pass begins on October 27 with leaf collection concluding with a final pass, weather permitting and if needed, starting on December 1.

Leaf trucks may be working in zones prior to pick up day but will return on (or after) the scheduled date as needed. Residents are asked to have leaves raked out next to the curb by 7 a.m. on the day of leaf pickup and to avoid parking on the street during their collection day. Leaf piles blocked by cars will not be collected until the cars are moved.  

Residents are also asked not to mix trash, branches, or other yard waste with their leaf piles.

As we move further into fall, the possibility of inclement weather increases. Leaf collection operations may be postponed as snow and ice control take priority.

The Compost Site at the Transfer Station will remain open throughout the fall season, weather permitting. The Compost Site will be open from 12-6 p.m. Sunday through Friday and from 9 a.m-6 p.m. on Saturdays.

Here are some additional guidelines for leaf collection:

  • Leaves should be placed near, but not beyond, the curb and should be within reach of the leaf vacuum.
  • Leaves should be free of tree branches and twigs as they can cause the leaf vacuums to clog up.
  • All leaves must be placed outside of fenced areas.
  • Leaves are not to be placed in the street to avoid clogging storm drains.
  • Leaves should not be placed in the street or extend into traffic lanes, thereby creating traffic hazards.
  • Leaves should not be placed around obstacles such as mailbox posts, sign posts, and light poles.
  • Crews will not pick up leaves mixed with debris, logs, branches, rocks, plastic, metal or glass containers, or any other types of refuse.
  • Leaves should not be placed on City cul-de-sacs, vacant land, or city property except on the public right-of-way along the curb/shoulder area.

For more information, contact the Department of Public Works at 563-263-8933.

Iowa DNR encourages top three ways to handle fall leaves –

Fall leaves are beautiful – until they pile up in your yard. Don’t send those precious nutrients up in smoke (it is actually illegal to burn yard waste in Muscatine on properties of two acres or less). Instead, put those nuisance leaf piles to good use. Leaves, small branches and other landscape materials can nourish your lawn, garden or community.

It’s easy:

  1. Compost. Composting leaves and food scraps is a great way to turn this waste into garden nutrients. A good compost mix needs both carbon (dead or dry leaves) and nitrogen (green materials like food scraps and grass clippings). Many types and sizes of compost containers are available. For tips on low-tech ways to compost, see a DNR tutorial.
  2. Mulch. Your lawn will love you if you chop up and leave your leaves in place. Leaves are a free, natural fertilizer that enriches your soil with organic matter. You can use your regular lawn mower. Or, use a mulching lawn mower to shred and mix leaves and grass into your yard.
  3. Bag it. If you have too many leaves or branches to compost, you can bag the leaves and tie up the branches to be collected or have a drop-off at the Muscatine Compost Facility. The upside is that anyone can pick up composted materials for their yards or gardens from the Compost Facility.
  1. Yard waste is collected on a residents refuse collection day but only in bags with the City of Muscatine logo on them. (See GUIDELINES). 
  2. Yard Waste in any paper bag along with tree limbs and other trimmings can be taken to the Compost Facility during normal hours operation. 
  3. Residents of Muscatine and Fruitland can drop off yard waste free of change with proof of residency. A small fee is charged for non-residents.

For some, burning leaves seems to capture the nostalgic smell of autumn. But breathing leaf smoke pulls pollutants such as carbon monoxide, soot and toxic chemicals into your lungs. While it may smell good, smoke is especially harmful to children, the elderly, and those with respiratory or heart problems. Turning leaves into nutrients is the healthy way to protect your and your neighbor’s lungs.