How to get rid of your garden waste for free


I wrote an article explaining how gardeners get rid of their waste but what about the rest of us cutting our own grass and trimming our own hedges? How do we get rid of garden waste? Well I’m going to show 4 ways not only showing how you can get rid of your garden waste but also how you can get rid of it for free!

Whether you are looking at ways on how to get rid of your garden waste in small fortnightly cycles or have a whole garden worth of waste to clear after a large cut back then you will find the answers to your garden waste queries right here! We will start the list with the simplest ways of getting rid of your garden waste for free and work our way up to your large garden cut backs.

To be as transparent as possible, in this article I have included links to the Amazon store for products that will help get rid of your garden waste for free. As an Amazon affiliate partner we receive a small commission when an item is purchased via a link on this website.

Call your local council and ask for a green waste recycling bin

This may seem obvious to some, but for those who aren’t in the know, you can call your local council and ask for a green waste recycling bin which are usually green or brown in colour depending on your local council. Depending on your local council there may be an annual fee with mine in particular charging £40 for the year. This ofcourse includes the green waste recycling bin itself with fortnightly collections.

I know what your thinking – An annual fee of £40 isn’t exactly a free way to get rid of your garden waste. But not all districts will charge this fee and for those that do, you are only paying for the service of emptying your green waste bin. The bin is free and so is the waste disposal itself – Depending how you look at it ofcourse!

What waste can I put in a green waste recycling bin?

Using a green waste bin is for the disposal of all garden waste as well as cooked and uncooked food waste where its contents will be taken to a facility and turned into agricultural fertiliser and compost.

The food waste that you can throw into your green waste recycling bin can include your fruit & vegetables, meat, fish, bread as well as a wide range of other foods and even the bones! Different councils can vary on their food waste rules so it’s best to contact them for more information.

When it comes to your garden waste you can dispose of almost anything. This can include, but not limited to, grass clippings, hedge cuttings, plants, thin branches and more.

In any instance, the general rule of thumb is to avoid putting any plastic bags in your green waste recycling bin – If you have used a carrier bag to collect your green waste then simply empty it into your bin and dispose of the bag separately. It may worth asking your local council if you can use bio-degradable bags as these may help. Also avoid disposing of anything heavy such as top soil.

Use a compost bin to recycle your garden waste for free

Compost bins are a great way to give back to your garden since you will be able to dispose of your garden waste for free whilst saving you money from purchasing nutrient rich compost from your local nursery.

How long does it take for your garden waste to break down to compost I hear you say? Well providing that you regularly turn your compost over and you have a good mix if grass clippings, plants, leaves etc. then your compost could be ready in just 2 to 4 months!

You could purchase a good compost bin from around £44.99 like this one on amazon with prices varying depending on the style and size. All of which look great and would make an excellent addition to any garden.

If your not keen on buying a compost bin then why not make one? You can do this with any old wood you have lying around – In fact pallets are a great item to make a compost bin from!

Dispose of your garden waste for free at your local dump

Your local dump will allow you to take a car load of garden waste and dispose of it for free. Yes there are restrictions stopping commercial vehicles such as vans and trucks from coming in but if that’s all you drive then don’t worry! You can get a van and trailer permit allowing you to take your van 12 times per year – All you need to do is do a quick search of your local council followed by ‘van permit for dump’ and you should be presented with a link to the online application.

I’ve taken full van loads of waste at times with about 8 bulk bags of garden waste inside. For the most part, I simply show my permit and away I go although there have been a few occasions where I have been refused due to their bins being too full and have had to go to another tip 10 minutes up the road. The easiest way for me to take my garden waste to the dump is to load it up in these bulk bags;

If you only have a small car then try using some reusable heavy duty garden sacks like these as these will be hard to tear from sticks etc. And save a lot of time bagging up your garden waste compared to using the smaller bin bags and rubble sacks.

You could get rid of your garden waste for free by burning it

Burning your garden waste might sound messy but it’s easy to have a small controlled fire and turn your green waste into ashes over a period of time, depending on how much you have ofcourse. One way of doing this, which is actually the way I get rid of my garden waste for free, is by using a galvanised metal garden incinerator, also known as a fire bin.

These garden incinerators are truly amazing. There is little risk of fire spreading and allows you to somewhat keep control of smoke as well as allowing you to put out the fire quickly and safely. If you have neighbours then be sure to check with them before setting light to your garden waste as you don’t want next door’s washing smelling of smoke!

You could even get the family involved and roast marshmallows on a nice Summer evening!

Do you have other ways of getting rid of your garden waste for free? I’d love to hear from you! It’s so easy to leave your comment below, or alternatively you can visit our forum where we all talk and share our thoughts on everything gardening!

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