We are lucky in Fort Lauderdale to be able to enjoy gardening year round. Our abundant sunshine and rain supports some of the most beautiful plant life in the world. Plants support local wildlife, help control runoff, and significantly lower GHG emissions. It may be a surprise, though that not every aspect of gardening is green. The way we garden in a modern, urban environment can produce a lot of waste. It is important to be sure to handle each type of garden waste correctly.
The City of Fort Lauderdale provides each solid waste account holder with a 65-gallon green cart to be used for yard waste, including grass clippings, tree trimmings, and other plant material. You can also use your green cart to dispose of old fresh flower arrangements, houseplants and even some decorative fruit arrangements, as long as all containers and decorations are removed. Your green cart can even be used to dispose of carved jack-o-lanterns and real Christmas trees.
These general guidelines apply:
- Remove all non-plant material.
- Recycle containers, if they are recyclable, or donate them.
- Save clean decorations for future use, or donate to charity. Recycle paper decorations that are not going to re-use.
- Consider transplanting houseplants outside. Our beautiful climate is right for most plants-- most of which are Florida-friendly. Just determine if you need shade, partial or full sun. Donate houseplants that you no longer want. Many rehabilitation facilities and schools would accept them.
- Place all unwanted, unusable or dead plant material in your green cart and close the lid securely. Cut greenery down to size if necessary.
- If you live in an apartment or condominium with no access to a yard waste cart, please consult with building management. Often, the landscape company contracted to work with the building or development will offer a yard waste service to residents.
The environmental advantage of using the green cart is that these materials are diverted from the waste stream and recycled as mulch or other materials that can be re-used outside. If they were put in the black garbage cart, they would just end up in a landfill. And in the blue cart, these same items become contaminants!For more information on the City of Fort Lauderdale Yard Waste Collection, click here.